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King's Centre for Visualization in Science


9th, 10th, 11th, 12th


Science, Chemistry, Earth and Space Sciences

Resource Types

  • Interactive Media
  • Ebooks

Regional Focus

Global, Polar Regions

Ice Core Research

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  • This interactive digital text provides in-depth information about why and how ice cores are important indicators of climate change.
  • Students will learn how scientists collect ice cores and how they analyze them to understand more about Earth's climate history.
Teaching Tips


  • The interactive digital text's home page has a linked table of contents, so students can click on the topic they want to learn about.
  • The resource includes several interactive modules that help students understand how tools such as an isotopic ratio mass spectrometer work.
  • Students can click on the "i" icons throughout the text to read more about certain topics.

Additional Prerequisites

  • Teachers may want to introduce students to the topics of ice cores and climate change in a group setting before they use this self-paced resource.
  • The graphics and layout of the resource look a little dated, but the interface is easy to navigate.


  • Teachers could create comprehension questions in a Google form or on paper for students to complete as they work through the self-paced text.
  • Before assigning this lesson, ask students to write down their responses to the following questions:
    • How do scientists know what Earth's climate was like in the past?
    • What could ancient ice tell us about the climate?
    • Can scientists access ancient ice? How?
  • Consider pairing this resource with this interesting video tour of the National Ice Core Lab.
Scientist Notes
Research into ice cores provides information on subtle changes in our climate. This resource is recommended for teaching.
  • 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.
      • HS-ESS2-4. Use a model to describe how variations in the flow of energy into and out of Earth’s systems result in changes in climate.
      • HS-ESS2-6. Develop a quantitative model to describe the cycling of carbon among the hydrosphere, atmosphere, geosphere, and biosphere.
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