A new bilingual educational resource developed by academics from the School of Earth and Ocean Sciences to help Welsh secondary schools deliver stimulating lessons about climate change has been launched by the Chair of Climate Change Commission for Wales.The "pack" entitled Adapting to Climate Change in Wales is intended both for teachers, and for children at "key stage 4", that is between the ages of 14 and 16. The CU "Learning about climate change" news page continues
The Climate Change Educational Resource Pack for Key Stage 4 explains the scientific basis of climate change and explores how changes in climate could impact citizens of Wales. In particular it looks at how citizens could adapt to living in a different climate.
Aimed at pupils and teachers, the multidisciplinary pack is tailored to meet the requirements of the Welsh national curriculum. It will be distributed to at least 100 secondary schools in Wales to help teachers deliver high quality, balanced information and inspire young people to adapt their behaviour to ensure their future sustainability. Although the focus is on Wales, this packs draws on examples from all over the world and covers everyday issues such as how food supply, settlement, transport and health may be affected.In the second paragraph, note "high quality, balanced information". How does the "pack" meet that description? Not too well, it seems. Right at the beginning of "Theme 1: The Global Climate Perspective" we find
Key learning outcomes
1. To understand key components of the greenhouse effect
2. To understand the influence of humans on climate
3. To understand predicted global climate changes... and on the following page (page 7) is this, relating to item 1 of the "Key learning outcomes"
Principle of the “Greenhouse Effect”
The sun shines down on the surface of the earth. About half the heat naturally reflects back out into space. When greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide and methane are released into our atmosphere, they trap heat and stop it reflecting back out into space. This causes additional warming of the earth surface, ocean and atmosphere… just like a greenhouse!That would seem to encompass and explain precisely none of the "key components of the greenhouse effect", in my opinion. A greenhouse doesn't trap reflected heat. The glass transmits incoming solar radiation and traps the warmed air. Greenhouse gases don't trap reflected heat. The phrasing implies that they do that only when "released into our atmosphere" and not otherwise. It isn't difficult to briefly describe the essential components of the "greenhouse effect" for all 14-16 year-olds in a similarly short paragraph, though since this is intended as the scientific basis for the entire "pack", surely it deserves a longer (and accurate) description?