Climate Change / Global Warming Science Demonstrations, Activities and Labs

Avoiding Flawed, Problem Science Demonstrations -- Greenhouse Effect in a Bottle; Heating Carbon Dioxide vs. Air;
Example of Faulty Demos:
As seen on BBC TV Newsnight-- "Putting the science of global warming to the test"
Hands-on Science Avoiding Flawed Demos > Greenhouse Effect > Problem Examples > BBC TV

home -- climate change education.org

Avoiding Flawed
Demonstrations:

Greenhouse Effect
Intro/Index

Faulty Demos
Errors, Misconceptions
Testing, Lab Results
Scientifically Strong
Resources
Rebuttals
Acknowledgements
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Index and Introduction (Special section's home page)
Overview of Flawed Demo Examples
Menu of the individual examples: Analysis and testing of flawed demo designs
Being most heavily promoted: Need -- National Energy Education Development     Keystone Center
Prominent demos:     CLEAN     Bill Nye & Al Gore    On BBC TV    AMNH -- American Museum of Natural History
Many examples currently on-line:    Spin on That   PBS's Nova Capturing Carbon    Pico Tech     CIRES        
Flawed demos of this variety have been carefully reviewed, tested and analyzed by other reputable scientists: Lueddecke et.al.
Common errors with these relatively rare variations: Using other heat trapping (greenhouse) gases    Sunlight as the energy source variations


BBC Newsnight: "Putting the science of global warming to the test"
[Demo starts at 1:48, ends at 4:12]
Very worthwhile video, especially to listen to comments made by members of the public.
For example, the man at the beginning expressing that he is skeptical in believing in something that he can't see.
Is he off base? Should not scientists and educators address that? Is it bad, or unintelligent, when people want to see the evidence themselves?
Science regularly makes the invisible visible, the difficult to measure measuable.
Science can produce quality science demonstrations, but outside of a few areas of the United States, the public never sees them.
Is not the ability to produce evidence a central characteristic of science's power?

Host does open video stating this is segment represents a "very unscientific experiment". Yet, the demo is centerpiece. It is possible to do demos scientifically.
There are great demos that address each of the factual questions raised by people in the video

Science Explained: Greenhouse effect in a bottle [BBC News webpage focusing on the demo.]
on Youtube [same video]
Presenter: Dr. Maggie Aderin-Pocock, a respected space scientist in Britain.
AGU Blog entry about the demo --4 July 2010


Developer, sponsor-promoter:
EADS Astrium (The parent company, EADS is based in the Netherlands. Astrium in an aerospace manufacturer.)




Introduction and Index
>>  Faulty demonstrations being heavily promoted -- over a dozen examples <<
Errors and misconceptions commonly found in flawed demonstrations
Testing the demos, mistakes revealed -- lab & field results from scientists and hundreds of students & teachers

Scientifically strong demonstrations engaging millions. Powerful, fun, dramatic, unforgettable.
Resources & Further Background
Encouraging rebuttal: welcoming sponsor-promoters to defend if demos are scientifically valid.
Testing the evidence for everyone to see, experience for themselves -- that's what has made science demonstrations so very powerful in history

Acknowledgements, Thank You's            Contact



2011 ClimateChangeEducation.org: Climate Education Specialists, since 1999
We are a team of teachers, docents, scientists, engineers, techs, artists, students and parents providing
pro bono services for thousands of climate education programs worldwide. While primarily based at science museums
and the University of California, we work with hundreds of schools, programs and science institutions around the world
to strengthen the climate education community.  If we should be working with you too, let us know.


For over ten years: we have been designing, developing and presenting hands-on science demonstrations for 100,000's of participants.
Sharing experiences, mutual learning with science education programs worldwide..
If you are part of designing, teaching, presenting and/or supporting sound science hands-on demonstrations on climate change, perhaps we should be working together.