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Gen-Z Media, Earth Rangers


9th, 10th, 11th, 12th, AP® / College


Science, Biology, Earth and Space Sciences, English Language Arts, Social-Emotional Learning

Resource Type

  • Podcast, 25 minutes, 24 seconds

Regional Focus


Tipping Points

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  • In this episode of The Big Melt podcast, the host opens with a story, discusses her feelings about climate change, climate tipping points, how we can avoid them, and how to deal with climate anxiety.
  • With the help of Dr. Simon Donnor, a professor of climatology, students will learn that is it not too late to avoid many of the worst impacts of climate change but that we must act quickly to reduce emissions.
  • The podcast highlights the power of the younger generations in the fight against climate change and inspires students to be part of the solution.
Teaching Tips


  • The opening will hook students, as the host describes the climate crisis like it's a disaster movie.
  • The podcast discusses climate change topics in a casual, conversational, and humorous way to better engage teenage listeners.

Additional Prerequisites

  • Many students may feel anxious, overwhelmed, or frustrated while listening. The podcast touches on how to manage these emotions and teachers should create a safe space for processing.
  • If students listen to this as a homework assignment, have them write down their feelings or thoughts as they listen.
  • The podcast could be divided into three shorter sections for use in the classroom.


  • There is a segment of the episode called climate myths, where the host addresses misinformation about climate change. Teachers can challenge students to find other examples of misleading or false information about climate change in the media.
  • The guest, Dr. Donnor, tells listeners that most climate change solutions already exist. Students can explore these solutions using this table of solutions or this interactive simulation.
  • The podcast encourages students to talk to friends and family about climate change. Students can write a letter to their families, create fliers to share in their community, write in the school or local newspaper, share a post on social media, or find their own creative way to spread the word.
  • Other related resources include this video on the mathematical concept of tipping points and this video about tipping points with deforestation and melting permafrost.
Scientist Notes
In this podcast episode, the host introduces the topic of climate change "tipping points" and offers an interview with climate scientist Dr. Simon Donner, who helps to explain what scientists mean by this term. The information presented in this podcast is factual. This podcast episode is recommended for teaching.
  • Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS)
    • ESS3: Earth and Human Activity
      • HS-ESS3-4 Evaluate or refine a technological solution that reduces impacts of human activities on natural systems.
  • College, Career, and Civic Life (C3) Standards
    • Dimension 4: Taking Informed Action
      • D4.6.9-12 Use disciplinary and interdisciplinary lenses to understand the characteristics and causes of local, regional, and global problems; instances of such problems in multiple contexts; and challenges and opportunities faced by those trying to address these problems over time and place.
      • D4.7.9-12 Assess options for individual and collective action to address local, regional, and global problems by engaging in self-reflection, strategy identification, and complex causal reasoning.
  • Common Core English Language Arts Standards (CCSS.ELA)
    • Speaking & Listening (K-12)
      • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.9-10.2 Integrate multiple sources of information presented in diverse media or formats (e.g., visually, quantitatively, orally) evaluating the credibility and accuracy of each source.
      • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.11-12.3 Evaluate a speaker's point of view, reasoning, and use of evidence and rhetoric, assessing the stance, premises, links among ideas, word choice, points of emphasis, and tone used.
  • Related Resources


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