Klimafolgen Online

Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, Climate Impacts & Vulnerability, Potsdam, Germany

The educational web portal www.klimafolgenonline-bildung.de is a tailor-made climate service to make climate and climate impact data and scientific knowledge of climate impacts and adaptation applicable for secondary and vocational schools in Germany. Climate science fundamentals and worksheets combining the interactive experience exploring climate data in the web portal with other sources have been designed for the school context to enable teachers to educate the complex relationships of climate change and its impacts [1]. In addition, as an easy-to-use compendium for the multitude and heterogeneous teaching materials, we have set up the separate web site www.klimabildung-pik.de. This site includes as well handouts, explanations and a tutorial. Here, we follow a competence-oriented approach, directed at everyday experience and the direct regional reference of students, enabling them to come to reasoned decisions.

To test and improve the developed learning lessons, to make them more self-explanatory and to tailor them for disciplinary school lessons, we performed more than 40 workshops and surveys with teachers. In secondary schools, nearly for all subjects we found entrance points for climate change learning units. In vocational schools, we developed learning units for economics, social studies, politics, healthcare management and insurance brokerage.

During the development process, we identified a number of challenges related to climate education with an interactive web portal approach (see as well [1]): the requirement to break down the scientific information when using a web portal, the usability of scientific visualizations for non-expert users, the communication of uncertainties and the integration of interactive web portals in school lessons in general. A specific observation is that in some cases the gap between the media skills of teachers and students can be a problem while interactively orienting in a complex space of climate scenarios, sectors and parameters. The additional time requirements for teachers integrating new interactive material into a rigid school curriculum and the level of attention span of some students can be further obstacles using the provided teaching material. For vocational schools, we observed much less hurdles and a higher motivation of students even without teacher support.

For future work, we plan to integrate the teaching material into our new international portal version (currently available at kfo.pik-potsdam.de), providing teaching material tailored to climate impact information as well outside of Germany and for teachers and students in other world regions.

[1] Blumenthal, I., Schlenther, C., Hirsbrunner, S., Stock, M., Nocke, T. (2018): Climate Impacts for German Schools – An Educational Web Portal Solution. – In: Filho, W. L., Manolas, E., Azul, A. M., Azeiteiro, U. M., McGhie, H. (Eds.), Handbook of Climate Change Communication: Vol. 3 – Case Studies in Climate Change Communication, Cham : Springer, 209-223.

How to cite: Hoffmann, P., Blumenthal, I., Hauf, Y., and Nocke, T.:  Climate Education in conjunction with a Climate Data Web Portal: a Field Report, EMS Annual Meeting 2022, Bonn, Germany, 5–9 Sep 2022, EMS2022-670, https://doi.org/10.5194/ems2022-670, 2022.