- What is ESD?
- Review Process
- Take Action
- Professional Development
- A project of
This ESD resource has students analyze the global food system from a ‘systems’ perspective to develop a better understanding of the important issues related to where their food comes from.
Part. A. Students watch a video that explores the concept of local food. They create a food log to determine their own eating habits and where their preferred foods come from. They also visit a local grocery and create a list of the different foods they find. Students map the points of origin of the items on their list and discuss the environmental, social and economic consequences of the distances food travels. Students will also plant seeds suited to the local climate to give them the experience of growing their own food.
Part B. The activities focus on planting seeds, identifying the parts of a plant, the role of each part, and which parts are edible. As a culminating activity, students become acquainted with the concept of food miles by participating in a pizza making simulation. (Actual pizza making is encouraged)
Part C. The resource suggests several follow-up activities to solidify the students’ learning. A reflection journal describing events as their plant grows to full maturity is proposed as a maintenance strategy. Students are also encouraged to develop a mind map based on their lunch of the day. The mind map can serve as a summative assessment of what the students have learned throughout the project.
Part D suggests enrichment activities. One such activity is an intergenerational interview to determine common foods in the past and where they came from. A second suggestion is to conduct an audit of the local superstore to see how much of the food sold there is local. This activity encourages students not only to conduct the audit, but then to communicate the findings with the store and if necessary, request that management increase the amount of local foods being sold.
The resource explicitely teaches students how to:
The resource supplies a good quantity of background information to both teacher and students. It is very easy to use and can easily be adapted to fit the needs of various teachers with various class composition.
The resource does an excellent job of addressing the social, economic and environmental dimensions of the issue. The resource also offers a wide range of learning activities, some of which extend into the community.
Activities are best suited for younger high school students.
The following tool will allow you to explore the relevant curriculum matches for this resource. To start, select a province listed below.
|Consideration of Alternative Perspectives||Satisfactory|
The resource implies that "local is always better".
|Consideration of Alternative Perspectives: |
|Multiple Dimensions of Problems & Solutions||Good|
The resource shows clearly how all these dimensions are linked together and thus cannot be treated separately.
|Multiple Dimensions of Problems & Solutions: |
Effectively addresses the environmental, economic and social dimensions of the issue(s) being explored.
|Respects Complexity||Very Good|
|Respects Complexity: |
The complexity of the problems/issues being discussed is respected.
|Acting on Learning||Good|
The resource includes a community-based project (grocery store audit).
|Acting on Learning: |
Learning moves from understanding issues to working towards positive change — in personal lifestyle, in school, in the community, or for the planet
Students are given several opportunities to voice their values through discussion and journaling.
|Values Education: |
Students are explicitly provided with opportunities to identify, clarify and express their own beliefs/values.
|Empathy & Respect for Humans||Poor/Not considered|
|Empathy & Respect for Humans: Empathy and respect are fostered for diverse groups of humans (including different genders, ethnic groups, sexual preferences, etc.).|
|Personal Affinity with Earth||Good|
By planting and caring for their own seeds, students will gain an appeciation for plants.
|Personal Affinity with Earth: |
Encourages a personal affinity with -the natural world.
Students are asked to look at what they eat, what is sold in their grocery store, what can grow in their climate and so on. The activities are very relevant to the learners' lives.
|Locally-Focused Learning: |
Includes learning experiences that take advantage of issues/elements within the local community.
|Past, Present & Future||Satisfactory|
One of the action activities requires students to conduct an interview with an elder to compare where the food they ate growing up came from.
|Past, Present & Future: Promotes an understanding of the past, a sense of the present, and a positive vision for the future.|
Most of the answers required of students are open-ended questions that have multiple or complex answers.
Lessons are structured so that multiple/complex answers are possible; students are not steered toward one 'right' answer.
Letter-writing and interviewing skills could be incorporated in an Language Arts class. Mapping the origin of foods could be incorporated in a Geography class.
|Integrated Learning: |
Learning brings together content and skills from more than one subject area
This group of activities is largely student-led.
|Inquiry Learning: |
Learning is directed by questions, problems, or challenges that students work to address.
A variety of activities that touch on various domains is included. No accommodations are suggested however.
|Differentiated Instruction: |
Activities address a range of student learning styles, abilities and readiness.
Students will be growing plants, making a "local" pizza, conducting an interview, conducting an audit and communicating with store managers.
|Experiential Learning: |
Authentic learning experiences are provided
|Cooperative Learning: |
Group and cooperative learning strategies are a priority.
|Assessment & Evaluation||Good|
Several suggestions are made throughout the resource on how to evaluate the students' learning. Some assessment tools are also provided to do so.
|Assessment & Evaluation: Tools are provided that help students and teachers to capture formative and summative information about students' learning and performance. These tools may include reflection questions, checklists, rubrics, etc.|
|Peer Teaching: |
Provides opportunities for students to actively present their knowledge and skills to peers and/or act as teachers and mentors.
|Case Studies||Poor/Not considered|
|Case Studies: |
Relevant case studies are included. Case studies are thorough descriptions of real events from real situations that students use to explore concepts in an authentic context.
|Locus of Control||Satisfactory|
|Locus of Control: Meaningful opportunities are provided for students to choose elements of program content, the medium in which they wish to work, and/or to go deeper into a chosen issue.|