The objective of this activity is to compile the mean summer month temperatures over the last 56 years from the community of Alert, Nunavut, to answer the question: is the climate getting warmer?

Get the Data On-Line

Environment Canada has weather temperature data for Alert, Nunavut going back to 1950. You can contact them for the data, or go to their web site at:
http://www.climate.weatheroffice.ec.gc.ca/climateData/canada_e.html and do the following:

1. Move your cursor so that Nunavut is highlighted and click your mouse.

2. In the Select Options box, select "monthly" for your interval, and 1950 for the year (1950 represents the earliest available data for Alert).

3. Now click on Alert.

4. You can now see what the recorded monthly mean temperatures in Alert are for 1950. To see the following year i.e. 1951, just click on "Next Year". Summer in Alert is July and August, so the mean summer temperature is the mean of those two temperatures.

Working with the Data

You ca Read More

The objective of this activity is to compile the mean summer month temperatures over the last 56 years from the community of Alert, Nunavut, to answer the question: is the climate getting warmer?

Get the Data On-Line

Environment Canada has weather temperature data for Alert, Nunavut going back to 1950. You can contact them for the data, or go to their web site at:
http://www.climate.weatheroffice.ec.gc.ca/climateData/canada_e.html and do the following:

1. Move your cursor so that Nunavut is highlighted and click your mouse.

2. In the Select Options box, select "monthly" for your interval, and 1950 for the year (1950 represents the earliest available data for Alert).

3. Now click on Alert.

4. You can now see what the recorded monthly mean temperatures in Alert are for 1950. To see the following year i.e. 1951, just click on "Next Year". Summer in Alert is July and August, so the mean summer temperature is the mean of those two temperatures.

Working with the Data

You can use a spreadsheet  to automatically calculate the average summer temperatures. Just copy and paste the data from the website to your spreadsheet for each year and it will automatically be calculated for you in the next column 

After you have your entire data set, create a graph to visually represent the temperature trends for Alert since 1950. If you are using Microsoft Excel:

a) Insert ‘chart’
b) Chart Type: XY (scatter)
c) Sub-type: Data connected by lines
d) Highlight both the year and mean temp column
e) Make sure ‘series in column’ is selected

Now label your chart & axes, and place your graph. To add a trendline:

a) Click on your chart
b) Under ‘Chart’ find ‘Add trendline’
c) Choose linear trendline

What trends do you see? Can you think of any explanations?







© 2007, Canadian Museum of Nature. All Rights Reserved.

Learning Objectives

• Appreciate the role and contribution of science and technology in our understanding of the world
• Compile and display evidence and information, by hand or computer, in a variety of formats, including diagrams, flow charts, tables, graphs, and scatter plots
• Evaluate the relevance, reliability, and adequacy of data and data collection methods


Teachers' Centre Home Page | Find Learning Resources & Lesson Plans