Electricity & Climate Change MacroStoryline

Grade Level

  • 6-8
  • 9-12


  • Curricula & Storylines
cover of ECC storyline

Driving questions: How are humans impacting the climate by turning on this lamp? What can we do about it?

Do you know where your electricity comes from, how its generation affects climate, AND what we can all do to reduce negative impacts? The ECC kit includes a massive collection of scientific equipment and resources that support middle and high school students in answering those questions. The NGSS-aligned storyline that supports this kit begins with a three-part anchoring phenomenon, prompting students to consider our impacts on climate with compelling multimedia displays. Students will run a Two Earths modeling investigation, collecting data to see the correlation between greenhouse gases and atmospheric temperature. Students will investigate how electricity has been generated historically, as well as a variety of modern renewable technologies. After learning how efficiency and conservation can help us reduce our impacts, students are encouraged to develop an action plan for a civic engagement project that encourages sustainability.

Middle School NGSS Standards Addressed

MS-ESS3-3 Earth and Human Activity: Apply scientific principles to design a method for monitoring and minimizing a human impact on the environment.

MS-ESS3-4 Earth and Human Activity: Construct an argument supported by evidence for how increases in human population and per-capita consumption of natural resources impact Earth's systems. 

High School NGSS Standards Addressed

HS-ESS2-4 Earth's Systems: Use a model to describe how variations in the flow of energy into and out of Earth’s systems result in changes in climate.

HS-ESS3-1 Earth and Human Activity: Construct an explanation based on evidence for how the availability of natural resources, occurrence of natural hazards, and changes in climate have influenced human activity. 

HS-ESS3-6 Earth and Human Activity: Use a computational representation to illustrate the relationships among Earth systems and how those relationships are being modified due to human activity. 

HS-PS2-5 Motion and Stability: Plan and conduct an investigation to provide evidence that an electric current can produce a magnetic field and that a changing magnetic field can produce an electric current. 

HS-PS3-3 Energy: Design, build, and refine a device that works within given constraints to convert one form of energy into another form of energy.

MS-ESS3-5 Earth and Human Activity: Ask questions to clarify evidence of the factors that have caused the rise in global temperatures over the past century.

MS-PS2-3 Motion and Stability: Ask questions about data to determine the factors that affect the strength of electric and magnetic forces. 

MS-PS2-5 Motion and Stability: Conduct an investigation and evaluate the experimental design to provide evidence that fields exist between objects exerting forces on each other even though the objects are not in contact.