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Database Provider

Author

My NASA Data

Grades

6th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th

Subjects

Science, Social Studies, Biology, Earth and Space Sciences, Geography

Resource Types

  • Lesson Plan, 90 minutes
  • Worksheet

Regional Focus

North America, United States, USA - West

Format

Jamboard, Google Docs, PDF

Analyzing Land Changes Over Time

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Synopsis
  • This 90-minute lesson guides students through analyzing land cover changes in Phoenix, Arizona, using NASA satellite imagery from their Landsat program in 1984 and 2018.
  • Students will classify land cover, record this data in a table, calculate the change over time, and discuss the ecological impacts of land cover changes.


Teaching Tips

Positives

  • Students use real-world data from NASA satellite technology to explore environmental concepts.
  • The lesson plan is detailed and provides excellent facilitation tips to lead discussions.
  • The lesson is interdisciplinary, connecting geography, technology, math, and science.

Additional Prerequisites

  • The resource includes a PDF of the lesson plan, a PDF of background information for teachers, and Google Docs and Jamboard versions of the student sheet.
  • If students are unfamiliar with analyzing satellite imagery, there is a link to a different lesson titled "Exploring Satellite Imagery and False Color Images" which could be completed first.

Differentiation:

  • Students will need to complete a percent change calculation when analyzing land cover change.  The formula is provided in the student worksheet, but some students may need assistance to plug in the correct values.
  • Some students may need assistance in articulating their findings in the "Interpreting the Data" section.  Consider having students work in pairs to discuss their data and formulate their responses.  Then have a class discussion of their findings where students may revise their recorded responses and explanations.
  • Teachers can expand on the concepts of pervious and impervious surfaces by doing a lab exploration of different materials and land surfaces.
Scientist Notes
The resource will deepen students understanding in analysing and interpreting satellite imageries on land cover land use (LCLU), classifying and reclassifying of changes in earth's feature including vegetation, rate of urbanization, water etc. from two satellite imageries of Phoenix, Arizona (1984 and 2018). The resource is recommended for teaching
Standards
  • Science
    • ESS2: Earth's Systems
      • HS.ESS2.2 Analyze geoscience data to make the claim that one change to Earth’s surface can create feedbacks that cause changes to other Earth systems.
    • ESS3: Earth and Human Activity
      • 6.ESS3.3 Apply scientific principles to design a method for monitoring and minimizing a human impact on the environment.
      • 8.ESS3.4 Construct an argument supported by evidence for how increases in human population and per-capita consumption of natural resources impact Earth’s systems.
      • HS.ESS3.1 Construct an explanation based on evidence for how the availability of natural resources, occurrence of natural hazards, and changes in climate have influenced human activity.
    • LS2: Ecosystems: Interactions, Energy, and Dynamics
      • 7.LS2.4 Construct an argument supported by empirical evidence that changes to physical or biological components of an ecosystem affect populations.
  • Social Sciences
    • Geography (K-12)
      • HS.39 Use maps, satellite images, photographs, and other representations to explain relationships between the locations of places and regions and their political, cultural, and economic dynamics.
      • HS.47 Assess the impact of human settlement activities on the environmental and cultural characteristics of specific places and regions.
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