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Introduction to ISeeChange for teachers

Make ISeeChange a virtual classroom to observe and discuss climate change

ISeeChange is a fun and easy way to incorporate citizen science into your curriculum. Students can use ISeeChange on a phone or computer to journal about climate, weather and the environment alongside a global community. From members in Nigeria tracking extreme heat to those in Miami monitoring sea level rise and flooding, our community puts a human face to the everyday impacts of climate change.

At ISeeChange we encourage students and teachers to share reflections and stories of how the changing climate is impacting our daily lives. Through ongoing observation, students can experience a connection to nature, grasp basic science concepts and start to tackle the large topic of climate change through real examples from their backyard.

Climate change can be overwhelming regardless of your age! However when students observe the challenges that it poses to them, they are confidently developing the tools and knowledge to envision future solutions.

For teachers looking to meet the Next Generation Science Standards, using ISeeChange with your class can fulfill requirements.

As active members of the ISeeChange community, students help to:

  • Build a public record of lived climate and weather experiences.

Your experiences have insights and context not seen in traditional science data, such as Massachusetts middle schoolers posting about how the weather affected their health.

  • Create awareness and evidence for local climate and weather concerns.

Members in Ocean City have been tracking their tidal flooding and advocating for mitigation projects.

  • In places where we have partnerships, posts can directly influence infrastructure, policy, and education programs.

Local governments, engineers and advocacy groups rely on data that may miss critical and insightful details. Our members in New Orleans have helped with granular, real time storm details and experiences for current flooding infrastructure projects.

What makes a good ISeeChange post?

  • Tell your story and include details about how the weather or climate is affecting your life.

Today was chilly which felt normal for October. The school had not turned on heat and some students complained that it had been cold inside some of the classrooms.

Arturo Garrido

  • Show how human life intersects with nature.

We are a public charter school in New Orleans. Today due to sporadically heavy rainfall, we experienced flooding at the corner of Hickory and Monroe Streets. Inside our building, extreme weather causes a lot of humidity. Outside the rainfall causes flooding that makes safe dismissal of students and staff more challenging. #LFNO #geauxgreen #climate kids #EIUS #LFNOGSCA

Simone Feaster-Armour

  • Share something you notice that is new, surprising or unusual.

To practice piano as efficiently as possible, I have highly-focused practice sessions for a few minutes at a time until I have trouble concentrating. It appears that before the heat wave, I was having longer periods of practice and more of them. Here’s the data:
Tuesday, 7/16: 45 + 11 + 5 + 10 + 6 + 10 + 1 + 5 + 4 + 9 + 3 + 5 = 114 minutes
Wednesday, 7/17: 11 + 9 + 15 + 10 + 11 + 2 + 7 + 1 + 15 + 5 + 3 + 7 + 21 + 10 + 7 + 15 + 3 + 15 = 167 minutes
Thursday, 7/18: 10 + 27 + 6 + 2 + 8 + 15 + 24 + 15 + 5 + 13 = 125 minutes
Friday, 7/19: 10 + 7 + 5 + 9 = 31 minutes
Saturday, 7/20: 13 + 7 + 8 + 7 + 6 = 41 minutes
Sunday, 7/21: 13 + 13 + 5 = 31 minutes

Matylda Biskupski

  • Track how a part of the natural world or your community changes over time or from one area to another.

The smell, the sight, the feeling, it’s all from the greatly dreaded Red Tide bloom. Through the passing weeks there has been a different smell to the beautiful Siesta Key. A smell that is extremely dangerous and turns away thousands of people to the beach each day. The change is great and the danger is high causing a decrease in family’s leaving it very quiet with no life brought to the beach . The sunsets people travel from far to see is not the same, it has changed greatly. The vibrant orange and pink that reveals laughter and enjoyment has not been appearing in the sunsets. Instead, we see dark greys and dirty waters with rough sand that holds the hundreds of washed up innocent fish on shore.

isabella stroschein

Good posts also create conversation! Teachers and students are encouraged to comment on sightings from their classmates and across the community. You can use the comments section as an extension of classroom discussion.

Notes on privacy

We find that individual accounts for students are the ideal way for classes to participate in terms of informing climate trends, inspiring conversation and contributing to climate adaptation planning. We understand that this may not be possible within all grade levels. For now, we encourage ISeeChange use in middle and high school.

Location data will never be made publicly available. On our platform the location of ISeeChange posts is generalized for privacy. Similarly, emails associated with ISeeChange accounts are not publicly available.

Since we are a public record of the climate experience, our posts can come up in google searches. If there are any concerns around this, we suggest teachers have students sign up with their first name and last initial or a pseudonym.

If you have questions about how to use ISeeChange in your classroom, don’t hesitate to reach out to us at community@iseechange.org.

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