Teachers use analogies, metaphors, and models to teach about how things work in the world. The greenhouse analogy, for example, provides a visible image to help students understand an abstract concept such as the greenhouse effect. By having students discuss what happens in a greenhouse, teachers can help them make sense of how radiation, or heat, could be trapped inside the atmosphere like heat trapped inside a greenhouse. However, this analogy can lead to another misconception about climate change that is connected to confusion about global warming and ozone depletion.
Watch this video of 6th grade students in South Gate, California—an urban community. The purpose of this classroom video is to see how the greenhouse analogy brings out misconceptions about the ozone hole.
For additional classroom context, video analysis, and reflection opportunities, read the Picture of Practice page for "Greenhouse Gases and the Ozone Hole" in the Changing Climate Environmental Literacy Teacher Guide, page 22.