Activity Introduction

antartica-footstep1-hero-260x300Quick summary: In this activity students investigate the different properties of solids, liquids and gases. They explore what happens when rising temperatures cause ice on land and in the sea to melt. They conduct two experiments, one looking at sea ice and the other looking at land ice and observe how the melting of this ice affects the sea level.

Earth Hour LogoFollowing this lesson plan is an ideal way for your school to take part in Earth Hour. You’ll be joining thousands of amazing teachers in making a difference and creating positive environmental change.

 

 

 

Learning goals:

  • Students build an understanding of states of matter
  • Students explore changing states of matter
  • Student apply their scientific knowledge to predict how rising temperatures will impact our climate.

General capabilities: Critical and creative thinking

Australian Curriculum content description:

Year 5 Science

  • Solids, liquids and gases have different observable properties and behave in different ways(ACSSU077)
  • With guidance, pose questions to clarify practical problems or inform a scientific investigation, and predict what the findings of an investigation might be (ACSIS231)
  • With guidance, plan appropriate investigation methods to answer questions or solve problems (ACSIS086)
  • Compare data with predictions and use as evidence in developing explanations (ACSIS218)
  • Communicate ideas, explanations and processes in a variety of ways, including multi-modal texts(ACSIS093)

Year 6 Science

  • Changes to materials can be reversible, such as melting, freezing, evaporating; or irreversible, such as burning and rusting (ACSSU095)
  • With guidance, pose questions to clarify practical problems or inform a scientific investigation, and predict what the findings of an investigation might be (ACSIS232)
  • Use equipment and materials safely, identifying potential risks (ACSIS105)
  • Compare data with predictions and use as evidence in developing explanations (ACSIS221)
  • Communicate ideas, explanations and processes in a variety of ways, including multi-modal texts (ACSIS110)

Syllabus OutcomesSC4-15LW, SC4-12ES, SC4-10PW

Topic: Climate change

Time required: 60 mins

Level of teacher scaffolding: High – conduct experiment, facilitate discussion and oversee activity

Resources required: Ice cubes, waterproof tray, plastic sheet, sticky tape, scissors, water, black marker, ruler long enough to fit most of the width of the tray, gravel (optional), internet access, student worksheet.

Digital technology opportunities: Digital sharing capabilities, infographic creation (e.g. Piktochart), DIY infographic background information.

Homework and extension opportunities: This activity includes opportunities for extension.

Keywords: Sea ice, ice bergs, land ice, melting, experiment, Antarctica, Arctic.

 Cool Australia’s curriculum team continually reviews and refines our resources to be in line with changes to the Australian Curriculum.

 

Worksheets

Teacher Worksheet

Teacher preparation:

Overarching learning goal: In this activity students explore states of matters and investigate what happens when rising temperatures cause ice on land and in the sea to melt. Students will understand the difference between sea ice and land ice and will recognise that melting land ice will affect sea levels, but that melting sea ice won't cause as much of a rise in sea levels.

Teacher content information: 

We need greenhouse gases in our atmosphere to keep the Earth at a temperature suitable to live. However, due to human activity increased levels of greenhouse gases are being trapped in our atmosphere, causing it to warm up (global warming). This is causing our climate to change and one of the impacts of this is melting ice at our poles. While this melting ice will dramatically affect the poles it will also affect sea levels. However, not all ice will have the same affect: land ice flowing into the sea will cause the total volume of water in the ocean to rise, w

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Student Worksheet

Thought starter: Is there a difference between the ice that you see in this picture? 

Calving-Glaciers-in-summer-Arctic-waters-Kongsfjord-Svalbard-Norway-©-Peter-Prokosch-WWF-Canon-copy

What do you SEE?

What does it make you THINK?

What do you WONDER?

Making predictions

In this activity you will be looking at how sea levels are affected by melting sea ice (such as icebergs) and melting land ice (ice that is found on land in places like Antarctica and Greenland). Before you begin the experiment, you need to describe what you think will happen to the sea level.

What do you think will happen to the sea level when the sea ice melts?

 

What do you think will happen to the sea level when the ice on the land melts and flows into the sea?

Reflection questions

What happened to the sea level when the sea ice melted? Did it go up, down or stay level?

 

What happened to the sea level when the land ice melted? Did it go up, down or stay level?

 

Can you imagine what would happen to the sea if all the ice in the Arctic melted?

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