Investigate permafrost characteristics : for High School

  • Use a set of hands-on classroom and computer-based activities to teach about permafrost and use various web-based scientific data portals to help the students to investigate permafrost distribution, characteristics of permafrost, and the effects of thawing permafrost on the atmosphere and the environment.
  • The plan includes 3-4 activities; one or more of these activities can be conducted. The time required for each activity is specified in the summary table of the laboratory plan.

Use the laboratory plan 'Changing Planet: Permafrost Gas Leak' to:

  • investigate permafrost characteristics

  • understand borehole data and identify the trends in the data observed

  • find a correlation between atmospheric methane data and permafrost thawing data

    Follow the instructions provided in the plan to complete these laboratory activities. Each activity can be conducted separately. The relevant reading material and links for datasets and worksheets are given in the main text or in the table (under the “Materials” section).

Much of the Alaskan tundra is permafrost. The polygon shapes in the snow are a sign that this permafrost is thawing.

Laboratory plan 'Changing Planet: Permafrost Gas Leak', developed by Missy Holzer, Jennifer Bergman, and Roberta Johnson, Windows to the Universe team members from the National Earth Science Teachers Association (NESTA)