ALEX Classroom Resource

  

Earth's Atmosphere StudyJam

  Classroom Resource Information  

Title:

Earth's Atmosphere StudyJam

URL:

https://studyjams.scholastic.com/studyjams/jams/science/weather-and-climate/earths-atmosphere.htm

Content Source:

Other
http://studyjams.scholastic.com/
Type: Audio/Video

Overview:

The atmosphere is a blanket of gases surrounding the Earth. The gases are classified according to their temperature differences. The weight of those gases pressing down on earth is what creates air pressure.

The classroom resource provides a video that will describe the different layers of Earth's atmosphere, how the atmosphere supports life, and how Earth's weather occurs in the atmosphere. There is also a short test that can be used to assess students' understanding.

Content Standard(s):
Science
SC2015 (2015)
Grade: 5
14 ) Use a model to represent how any two systems, specifically the atmosphere, biosphere, geosphere, and/or hydrosphere, interact and support life (e.g., influence of the ocean on ecosystems, landform shape, and climate; influence of the atmosphere on landforms and ecosystems through weather and climate; influence of mountain ranges on winds and clouds in the atmosphere).

Unpacked Content
Scientific And Engineering Practices:
Developing and Using Models
Crosscutting Concepts: Systems and System Models
Disciplinary Core Idea: Earth's Systems
Evidence Of Student Attainment:
Students:
  • Develop a model using an example to describe ways the geosphere, biosphere, hydrosphere, and/or atmosphere interact.
Teacher Vocabulary:
  • Atmosphere
  • Hydrosphere
  • Geosphere
  • Biosphere
  • Model
  • Phenomenon
  • System
  • Earth
Knowledge:
Students know:
  • Earth's major systems are the geosphere (solid and molten rock, soil, and sediments), the hydrosphere (water and ice), the atmosphere, and the biosphere (living things, including humans).
  • These systems interact in multiple ways to affect Earth's surface materials and processes.
  • The ocean supports a variety of ecosystems and organisms, shapes landforms, and influences climate.
  • Winds and clouds in the atmosphere interact with the landforms to determine patterns of weather.
Skills:
Students are able to:
  • Develop a model, using a specific given example of a phenomenon, to describe ways that the geosphere, biosphere, hydrosphere, and/or atmosphere interact. In the model, identify the relevant components of their example, including features of two of the following systems that are relevant for the given example:
    • Geosphere (i.e., solid and molten rock, soil, sediment, continents, mountains).
    • Hydrosphere (i.e., water and ice in the form of rivers, lakes, glaciers).
    • Atmosphere (i.e., wind, oxygen).
    • Biosphere [i.e., plants, animals (including humans)].
  • Identify and describe relationships (interactions) within and between the parts of the Earth systems identified in the model that are relevant to the example (e.g., the atmosphere and the hydrosphere interact by exchanging water through evaporation and precipitation; the hydrosphere and atmosphere interact through air temperature changes, which lead to the formation or melting of ice).
  • Use the model to describe a variety of ways in which the parts of two major Earth systems in the specific given example interact to affect the Earth's surface materials and processes in that context. Use the model to describe how parts of an individual Earth system:
    • Work together to affect the functioning of that Earth system.
    • Contribute to the functioning of the other relevant Earth system.
Understanding:
Students understand that:
  • Systems, like the atmosphere, biosphere, geosphere, and hydrosphere, can be described in terms of their components and their interactions.
AMSTI Resources:
AMSTI Module:
Dynamics of Ecosystems

Alabama Alternate Achievement Standards
AAS Standard:
SCI.AAS.5.14- Identify how the atmosphere and hydrosphere interact to support life (e.g. air, water).


Science
SC2015 (2015)
Grade: 6
Earth and Space Science
13 ) Use models (e.g., diagrams, maps, globes, digital representations) to explain how the rotation of Earth and unequal heating of its surface create patterns of atmospheric and oceanic circulation that determine regional climates.

a. Use experiments to investigate how energy from the sun is distributed between Earth's surface and its atmosphere by convection and radiation (e.g., warmer water in a pan rising as cooler water sinks, warming one's hands by a campfire).


NAEP Framework
NAEP Statement::
E8.11a: The Sun is the major source of energy for phenomena on Earth's surface.

NAEP Statement::
E8.11b: It provides energy for plants to grow and drives convection within the atmosphere and oceans, producing winds, ocean currents, and the water cycle.

NAEP Statement::
E8.13a: Global patterns of atmospheric movement influence local weather.

NAEP Statement::
E8.13b: Oceans have a major effect on climate because water in the oceans holds a large amount of heat.

NAEP Statement::
P8.10a: Energy is transferred from place to place.

NAEP Statement::
P8.10b: Light energy from the Sun travels through space to Earth (radiation).

NAEP Statement::
P8.10c: Thermal energy travels from a flame through the metal of a cooking pan to the water in the pan (conduction).

NAEP Statement::
P8.10d: Air warmed by a fireplace moves around a room (convection).

NAEP Statement::
P8.10e: Waves (including sound and seismic waves, waves on water, and light waves) have energy and transfer energy when they interact with matter.

NAEP Statement::
P8.11a: A tiny fraction of the light energy from the Sun reaches Earth.

NAEP Statement::
P8.11b: Light energy from the Sun is Earth's primary source of energy, heating Earth surfaces and providing the energy that results in wind, ocean currents, and storms.


Unpacked Content
Scientific And Engineering Practices:
Developing and Using Models
Crosscutting Concepts: Systems and System Models
Disciplinary Core Idea: Earth's Systems
Evidence Of Student Attainment:
Students:
  • Explain by using models, how the rotation of Earth and unequal heating of its surface create patterns of atmospheric circulation that determine regional climates.
  • Explain by using models, how the rotation of Earth and unequal heating of its surface create patterns of oceanic circulation that determine regional climates.
  • Use experiments to investigate how energy from the sun is distributed between Earth's surface and its atmosphere by convection.
  • Use experiments to investigate how energy from the sun is distributed between Earth's surface and its atmosphere by radiation.
Teacher Vocabulary:
  • Model
  • Diagram
  • Map
  • Globe
  • Digital representation
  • Rotation
  • Heat
  • Pattern
  • Atmosphere
  • Atmospheric circulation
  • Ocean
  • Oceanic circulation
  • Climate
  • Regional climate
  • Radiation
  • Sun
  • Solar energy
  • Thermal energy
  • Water
  • Land
  • Ice
  • Temperature
  • Matter
  • Conduction
  • Latitude
  • Altitude
  • Geography
  • Geographic land distribution
  • Precipitation
  • Absorption
  • Landform
  • Atmospheric flow
  • Mountain
  • Rain shadow effect
  • Coriolis force
  • Fluid
  • Density
  • Salinity
  • Global ocean convection cycle
  • Landmass
  • Marine
  • Coast
  • Variation
  • Radiation
  • Electromagnetic wave
  • Space
  • Convection
  • Current
  • Liquid
  • Gas
  • Equator
Knowledge:
Students know:
  • Radiation from the sun (solar energy) introduces heat (thermal energy) into Earth's atmosphere, water, land, and ice.
  • Thermal energy exists in the atmosphere, water, land, and ice as represented by temperature.
  • Thermal energy moves from areas of high temperature to areas of lower temperature either through the movement of matter, via radiation, or via conduction of heat from warmer objects to cooler objects.
  • Absorbing or releasing thermal energy produces a more rapid change in temperature on land compared to in water.
  • Absorbing or releasing thermal energy produces a more rapid change in temperature in the atmosphere compared to either on land or in water so the atmosphere is warmed or cooled by being in contact with land or the ocean.
  • The rotation of Earth and unequal heating of its surface create patterns of atmospheric and oceanic circulation.
  • Patterns of atmospheric and oceanic circulation vary by latitude, altitude, and geographic land distribution.
  • Higher latitudes receive less solar energy per unit of area than do lower latitudes, resulting in temperature differences based on latitude.
  • A general latitudinal pattern in climate exists where higher average annual temperatures are found near the equator and lower average annual temperatures are at higher latitudes.
  • Latitudinal temperature differences are caused by more direct light (greater energy per unit of area) at the equator (more solar energy) and less direct light at the poles (less solar energy).
  • A general latitudinal pattern of drier and wetter climates caused by the shift in the amount of air moisture during precipitation from rising moisture-rich air and the sinking of dry air.
  • In general, areas at higher altitudes have lower average temperatures than do areas at lower altitudes. Because of the direct relationship between temperature and pressure, given the same amount of thermal energy, air at lower pressures (higher altitudes) will have lower temperatures than air at higher pressures (lower altitudes).
  • Features on the Earth's surface, such as the amount of solar energy reflected back into the atmosphere or the absorption of solar energy by living things, affect the amount of solar energy transferred into heat energy.
  • Landforms affect atmospheric flows (e.g., mountains deflect wind and/or force it to higher elevation, known as the rain shadow effect).
  • The geographical distribution of land limits where ocean currents can flow.
  • The Earth's rotation causes oceanic and atmospheric flows to curve when viewed from the rotating surface of Earth (Coriolis force).
  • Fluid matter (i.e., air, water) flows from areas of higher density to areas of lower density (due to temperature or salinity). The density of a fluid can vary for several different reasons (e.g., changes in salinity and temperature of water can each cause changes in density). Differences in salinity and temperature can, therefore, cause fluids to move vertically and, as a result of vertical movement, also horizontally because of density differences.
  • Ocean circulation is dependent upon the transfer of heat by the global ocean convection cycle, which is constrained by the Coriolis effect and the outlines of continents.
  • Because water can absorb more solar energy for every degree change in temperature compared to land, there is a greater and more rapid temperature change on land than in the ocean. At the centers of landmasses, this leads to conditions typical of continental climate patterns.
  • Climates near large water bodies, such as marine coasts, have comparatively smaller changes in temperature relative to the center of the landmass. Land near the oceans can exchange thermal energy through the air, resulting in smaller changes in temperature. At the edges of landmasses, this leads to marine climates.
  • Variations in density due to variations in temperature and salinity drive a global pattern of interconnected ocean currents.
  • Radiation is the transfer of heat energy by electromagnetic wave motion. The transfer of energy from the sun across nearly empty space is accomplished primarily by radiation.
  • Radiation from the sun (solar energy) introduces heat (thermal energy) into Earth's atmosphere, water, land, and ice.
  • Convection is the transfer of heat by a current and can occur in a liquid or a gas.
  • When air near the ground is warmed by heat radiating from Earth's surface. The warm air is less dense, so it rises. As it rises, it cools. The cool air is dense, so it sinks to the surface. This creates a convection current.
  • Convection is the most important way that heat travels in the atmosphere.
  • Convection in the atmosphere is responsible for the redistribution of heat from the warm equatorial regions to higher latitudes and from the surface upward.
Skills:
Students are able to:
  • Use a model of Earth and identify the relevant components of Earth's system, including inputs and outputs.
  • Describe the relationships between components of the model including how the rotation of Earth and unequal heating of its surface create patterns of atmospheric and oceanic circulation.
  • Articulate a statement that relates a given phenomenon to a scientific idea, including how the rotation of Earth and unequal heating of its surface create patterns of atmospheric and oceanic circulation.
  • Identify and describe the phenomenon under investigation, which includes how energy is distributed between Earth's surface and its atmosphere.
  • Identify and describe the purpose of the investigation, which includes providing evidence that energy from the sun is distributed between Earth's surface and its atmosphere by convection and radiation.
  • Collect and record data, according to the given investigation plan.
  • Evaluate the data to determine how energy from the sun is distributed between Earth's surface and its atmosphere by convection and radiation.
Understanding:
Students understand that:
  • Weather and climate are influenced by interactions involving sunlight, the ocean, the atmosphere, ice, landforms, and organisms. These interactions vary with latitude, altitude, and local and regional geography, all of which can affect oceanic and atmospheric flow patterns.
  • The ocean exerts a major influence on weather and climate by absorbing energy from the sun, releasing it over time, and globally redistributing it through ocean currents.
  • Radiation from the sun (solar energy) introduces heat (thermal energy) into Earth's atmosphere, water, land, and ice and is represented by temperature. Thermal energy moves from areas of high temperature to areas of lower temperature on Earth's surface and in its atmosphere either through radiation or convection.
AMSTI Resources:
AMSTI Module:
Understanding Weather and Climate (for both 13 and 13a)

Alabama Alternate Achievement Standards
AAS Standard:
SCI.AAS.6.13 - Use models to investigate how energy from the sun impacts Earth's surface; recognize that uneven heating of Earth's surface causes patterns in weather and climate. SCI.AAS.6.13a - Recognize that the sun's thermal energy is distributed throughout Earth's atmosphere by convection and radiation.


Tags: air pressure, atmosphere, gas, sea level
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The test may be completed as a whole group or independently on student devices. 

  This resource provided by:  
Author: Hannah Bradley