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Type: FireWorks activities
Availability: Public access
Date Created: July 16, 2018
  • FireWorks Educational Program
  • Ilana L. Abrahamson
    US Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station, Fire, Fuel, and Smoke Science Program

Lesson overview: In this activity, students assemble a graphical model of the forest communities on a mountainside in the northern Rocky Mountains/North Cascades region. They use the model to describe specific forest communities and to assess the potential for tree distributions to change in response to climate change. Then they read and take a stand on the use of assisted migration to conserve species.

Lesson Goal: Increase students’ understanding that species with similar needs may occur together, that forest communities occur in locations with specific environmental conditions, and that species distributions and community composition may change as climate conditions change.


  • Students can list tree species that are likely to occur together and comprise unique forest communities.
  • Students can predict some potential effects of climate change on the distributions of tree species.
  • Students can express their observations and opinions about assisted migration, a method that could be used to mitigate the effects of climate change on species.

Cataloging Information

Partner Sites:
  • climate change
  • forest communities
  • tree distribution
Record Last Modified:
Record Maintained By: FRAMES Staff (
FRAMES Record Number: 56190