In this activity, students read fictional social media posts about the climate and practice spotting and responding to that false information about climate change.
Students respond to the posts with accurate and reliable information.
This activity stimulates interaction and critical thinking skills, which makes it more fun and responsive for students.
It’s short but can invite good conversation, so it can be completed in a class period and explores different topics within climate change.
Make sure students are using accurate and reliable sources like those linked at the bottom of each page or on the StC website.
Allow students to use other credible resources to research and respond to the statements or to other topics that come up in discussion.
Some students know more than others, so there will likely be a difference in how the sources are interpreted and understood.
This lesson is a gateway to talk about many topics related to climate change, so students could continue this conversation in another class or outside of the classroom to gain additional perspectives or examples.
Students may be inspired to find myths to talk about in class, which could be used during the lesson as a media literacy exercise.
Allow students to talk about their experiences with these myths to expand the lesson. Did they believe them or not? If students have been misled like this, ask them to identify the source so that other students can avoid similar content.
Encourage students to learn more about the misinformation and what they can do about it. Create a post to counter one that is spreading misinformation.
Teachers can challenge students to bring in a post about climate change they encounter in their lives. These can be used as additional practice to screen for false information.
Students can create a guide for spotting false information that they share with their school or community.
To expand on this lesson, teachers can introduce greenwashing using this video or this lesson plan.
It can often be difficult to know how credible information can be. This activity will give students the skills to judge the scientific credibility of common false climate change claims. The sources for this activity are excellent and scientifically accurate. This resource is recommended for teaching.
Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS)
ESS3: Earth and Human Activity
MS-ESS3-5 Ask questions to clarify evidence of the factors that have caused the rise in global temperatures over the past century.
College, Career, and Civic Life (C3) Standards
Dimension 3: Gathering and Evaluating Sources
D3.1.6-8 Gather relevant information from multiple sources while using the origin, authority, structure, context, and corroborative value of the sources to guide the selection.
D3.2.6-8 Evaluate the credibility of a source by determining its relevance and intended use.
Common Core English Language Arts Standards (CCSS.ELA)
Reading: Science & Technical Subjects (6-12)
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RST.6-8.8 Distinguish among facts, reasoned judgment based on research findings, and speculation in a text.