On April 18th, 2019, the team at Washington Green Schools hosted their latest in a series of Climate Science STEM Seminars. This session focused on the relationship between agriculture and the changing climate and was hosted at the Windy Hills Winery in Ridgefield, WA.
The room was filled with 32 K-12 teachers, many of whom had traveled up to two hours to attend the training. They were very eager to get their hands on the latest climate science data and speak with Dr. Heidi Roop, our visiting climate scientist from UW Climate Impacts Group. The teachers also heard from two local vintners about the impacts of climate on local grapes as well as grape growers east of the Cascades.
Throughout the day, teachers engaged in the NGSS science and engineering practices. For example, they modeled the greenhouse gas effect and revised their models throughout the day after acquiring a better understanding of the effect and its impacts on agriculture. Additionally, teachers read, synthesized, and communicated out recent news coverage of the relationship between climate change and local agriculture.
Finally, teachers conducted a data gallery walk, analyzing and interpreting data related to climate change and agriculture in Washington state. It was a day that culminated in some deep thinking and work around how best to bring these practices, resources, and local phenomena back into the classroom at various grade levels to address age-appropriate performance expectations.