Grade Levels: 3-5, 6-8

In this lesson plan, adaptable for grades 3-12, students explore BrainPOP resources to learn about climate change. Using what they learn, including the causes and effects of climate change, and solutions to this problem, students write and present a persuasive speech about why and how their schools should address climate change.


Students will:

  1. Brainstorm what they know about climate change.
  2. Identify the causes and effects of climate change.
  3. Identify the solutions to climate change.
  4. Write and present a persuasive speech.
  5. Plot out a graph. (extension activity)



adapt, amplify, climate, conserve, drought, extinct, fossil fuels, glacier, live stock, weather


Lesson Procedure:

  1. Write “Climate Change” on a whiteboard or other display. Ask students to brainstorm what they know about climate change. Many may say rise in temperature. That’s fine, but encourage them to also consider what might cause climate change, and possible solutions to this problem.
  2. Tell students that today they will learn about climate change, including what it is, how it differs from weather, its causes and effects, and finally solutions to this problem.
  3. Show the movie Climate Change on an interactive whiteboard or other large display to the whole class once through without pausing.
  4. Next, if you have access to multiple computers or devices, have students open the Make-a-Map feature. Or, if limited computers or devices, distribute the Cause and Effect graphic organizer.
  5. Students are to watch the movie again within the Make-a-Map feature. As they watch, have them construct a concept map identify the causes of climate change, and its effects. If limited computers, you can show the movie again to the whole class as they take notes offline on a Cause and Effect graphic organizer.
  6. After completing their concept maps, have students review the end of the movie within Make-a-Map, starting at time code 5:42. Have them create a second concept map identify solutions to climate change, including both what they can do individually and more global solutions.
  7. Tell students to imagine they are the President of the United States and that they are delivering a speech to the country on the important issue of climate change. The goal of the speech is to persuade Americans, both individuals and companies, to make changes they can make that will help solve the climate change problem. To support why change is important,  the speech must describe what climate changes is and its detrimental effects. Remind them to use details from their concept maps to write their speeches. They may want to use the Climate Change T-Chart to organize their notes. Encourage students to review and edit each other’s speeches.  Allow time for this process and for revisions.
  8. Finally, have students present their speeches to the class.

Extension Activities:

Working individually or with a partner, have students complete the Graph It activity by constructing a line graph identifying the monthly average concentration of carbon dioxide recorded at Hawaii’s Mauna Lao Observatory. Then, answer the questions.
Filed as:  3-5, 6-8, Climate Change