Making Climate Connections - Climate Science Alliance Supports Teaching Native Waters Program

Over the winter quarter, the Climate Science Alliance was excited to collaborate with the Desert Research Institute in engaging with Native educators across the Southwest for the Teaching Native Waters professional development program. Through our module, “Making Climate Connections”, educators discovered how you can use phenomena based learning to launch a series of student-driven questions around regional climate impacts to local species and communities.



Over the winter quarter, the Climate Science Alliance was excited to collaborate with the Desert Research Institute in engaging with Native educators across the Southwest for the Teaching Native Waters program.


Teaching Native Waters is a professional development program, headed by the Desert Research Institute that supports educators in making science actionable in classrooms. This is done by building a network of educators serving Native students to learn together, exchange ideas and adapt science to the needs of classrooms in a place-based way. Teaching Native Waters brings together formal educators serving Native students, Indigenous and non-native scientists working on relevant projects, and specialists in educator support.


Dr. Kyle Bocinsky discusses drought and climate resilience

as an anchoring phenomenon for educators.


In our six-week module, Making Climate Connections, we helped guide educators to discover how they can use phenomena based learning to launch a series of student-driven questions around regional climate impacts to local species and communities. We helped connect educators with regional climate scientists to unpack regional climate data, learn how to make it relevant to their students, and inspire hope in the context of a changing climate. Throughout the module, educators worked to develop their own lesson plan built around a single climate impact in their region and garnered helpful feedback from other educators serving Native students.