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Ocean Trash Talk

Kindergarten to Grade 3

Elementary

Description

Ocean Trash Talk is a one-class introduction for primary students on the topic of litter in our oceans. During the activities, the students are encouraged to identify ways in which plastics are harming our oceans and to brainstorm and complete specific actions to address the problem.The students will begin the lesson with a discussion about ocean plastic pollution with a number of questions. The students will then brainstorm ways in which plastic is harming the ocean and share their ideas with the class via a piece of writing or a drawing. After watching a four-minute video, the students will discuss follow-up questions related to the video content. They will then brainstorm positive actions to help decrease the amount of plastic consumed. The students will then choose and commit to one new action and share it with family, friends and the school community.

General Assessment

What skills does this resource explicitly teach?

As this resource is focused on the development of an awareness of the plastic litter issue, it does not explicitly teach any skills.

Strengths

  • There is a fair quantity of background information provided for the teacher.
  • The video will engage students and give them ideas on actions that they make want to take.
  • The material is straight forward and presented in a manner that is easy to understand.

Weaknesses

  • There are no assessment tools provided.

Recommendation of how and where to use it

This lesson plan is a great way to introduce young students to the topic of plastic litter and its effects.  A teacher could tie this lesson to the book "Join the No-Plastic Challenge" by Scot Ritchie. 

The lesson could also be used to highlight the following eco-friendly dates:

  • World Oceans Day in early June
  • Waste Reduction Week in mid-October 
  • Earth Day in mid-April. 

Relevant Curriculum Units

The following tool will allow you to explore the relevant curriculum matches for this resource. To start, select a province listed below.

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  • Alberta
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    • Kindergarten
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Investigating change and the diversity of Earth’s systems helps us to develop understandings of the conditions necessary to sustain life
    • Grade 1
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Investigating change and the diversity of Earth’s systems helps us to develop understandings of the conditions necessary to sustain life
    • Grade 2
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Investigating change and the diversity of Earth’s systems helps us to develop understandings of the conditions necessary to sustain life.
    • Grade 3
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Investigating change and the diversity of Earth’s systems helps us to develop understandings of the conditions necessary to sustain life.
  • British Columbia
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    • Grade 1
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Science 1: Living things have features and behaviours that help them survive in their environment
    • Grade 2
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Science 2: Water is essential to all living things and it cycles through the environment
    • Grade 3
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Science 3: Living things are diverse, can be grouped, and interact in their ecosystems
  • Manitoba
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    • Grade 1
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Characteristics and Needs of Living Things
    • Grade 2
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Air and Water in the Environment
  • New Brunswick
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    • Grade 1
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • You and Your World: Our Environment
    • Grade 2
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      • Science
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        • You and Your World: Change and the Physical Environment
  • Newfoundland & Labrador
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      • Science
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        • Needs and Characteristics of Living Things
    • Grade 2
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Air and Water in the Environment
  • Northwest Territories
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    • Grade 1
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Life Systems: Characteristics and Needs of Living Things
    • Grade 2
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Earth and Space Systems: Air and Water in the Environment
  • Nova Scotia
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    • Grade 1
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Science 1: Living Things and the Environment
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Science 2: Air and Water in the Environment
  • Nunavut
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    • Grade 1
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Life Systems: Characteristics and Needs of Living Things
    • Grade 2
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Earth and Space Systems: Air and Water in the Environment
    • Grade 3
      • Step 3Select a subject
  • Ontario
  • Prince Edward Island
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    • Grade 1
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Needs and Characteristics of Living Things
    • Grade 2
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Air & Water in the Environment
  • Quebec
  • Saskatchewan
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    • Grade 1
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Needs & Characteristics of Living Things
    • Grade 2
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Air and Water in the Environment
  • Yukon Territory
    • Step 2Select a grade level
    • Grade 1
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Science 1: Living things have features and behaviours that help them survive in their environment
    • Grade 2
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Science 2: Water is essential to all living things and it cycles through the environment
    • Grade 3
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Science 3: Living things are diverse, can be grouped, and interact in their ecosystems

Themes Addressed

  • Waste Management (2)

    • Rethink, Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
    • Source Reduction
  • Water (2)

    • Marine Environments
    • Water Quality

Sustainability Education Principles

Principle Rating Explanation
Consideration of Alternative Perspectives Good
Consideration of Alternative Perspectives:
  • Satisfactory: absence of bias towards any one point of view
  • Good: students consider different points of view regarding issues, problems discussed
  • Very good: based on the consideration of different views, students form opinions and  take an informed position
Multiple Dimensions of Problems & Solutions Good

Through the discussion questions, the students are able to gain an understanding of the environmental, economic and social issues around the topic.

Multiple Dimensions of Problems & Solutions:

Effectively addresses the environmental, economic and social dimensions of the issue(s) being explored.

  • Satisfactory: resource supports the examination of  these dimensions
  • Good:  resource explicitly examines the interplay of these dimensions
  • Very Good:  a systems-thinking approach is encouraged to examine these three dimensions
Respects Complexity Good
Respects Complexity:

The complexity of the problems/issues being discussed is respected.

Acting on Learning Very Good

The students commit to one new action to help reduce plastic pollution.  They will share this action with their school community, their friends and family as well as the community.

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

  • Satisfactory: action opportunities are included as extensions 
  • Good: action opportunities are core components of the resource
  • Very Good: action opportunities for students are well supported and intended to result in observable, positive change
Values Education Good

This resource allows opportunities for the students to identify and express their values through the discussion questions and with the commitment to one new action to help diminish the amount of plastic litter they create.

Values Education:

Students are explicitly provided with opportunities to identify, clarify and express their own beliefs/values.

Empathy & Respect for Humans Poor/Not considered

This is not a focus of this resource.

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

The resource aims to educate, inspire and empower students to take actions to protect our oceans.

Personal Affinity with Earth:

Encourages a personal affinity with -the natural world.  

  • Satisfactory: connection is made to the natural world
  • Good: fosters appreciation/concern for the natural world
  • Very Good: fosters stewardship though practical and respectful experiences out-of-doors 
Locally-Focused Learning Satisfactory
Locally-Focused Learning:

Includes learning experiences that take advantage of issues/elements within the local community. 

  • Satisfactory: learning is made relevant to the lives of the learners
  • Good: learning is made relevant and has a local focus
  • Very Good: learning is made relevant, local and takes place ‘outside’ , in the community 
Past, Present & Future Good

The teacher may have to develop with the students a more complete understanding of the past and how our dependence on plastics came to be but the sense of the present and a positive vision for the future is good within the resource.

Past, Present & Future: Promotes an understanding of the past, a sense of the present, and a positive vision for the future.

Pedagogical Approaches

Principle Rating Explanation
Open-Ended Instruction Good

The resource provides a variety of starter and follow-up discussion questions. Students are not geared toward one correct answer.

Open-Ended Instruction :

Lessons are structured so that multiple/complex answers are possible; students are not steered toward one 'right' answer.

Integrated Learning Good
Integrated Learning:

Learning brings together content and skills  from more than one  subject area

  • Satisfactory: content from a number of different  subject areas is readily identifiable
  • Good:  resource is appropriate for use in more than one subject area
  • Very Good:  the lines between subjects are blurred 
Inquiry Learning Satisfactory
Inquiry Learning:

Learning is directed by questions, problems, or challenges that students work to address.   

  • Satisfactory: Students are provided with questions/problems to solve and some direction on how to arrive at solutions.
  • Good: students, assisted by the teacher clarify the question(s) to ask and the process to follow to arrive at solutions.  Sometimes referred to as Guided Inquiry
  • Very Good:  students generate the questions and assume much of the responsibility for how to solve them.  . Sometimes referred to as self-directed learning.

 

Differentiated Instruction Good
Differentiated Instruction:

Activities address a range of student learning styles, abilities and readiness.

  • Satisfactory:  includes a variety of instructional approaches
  • Good: addresses  the needs of visual, auditory &  kinesthetic learners
  • Very Good: also includes strategies for learners with difficulties
Experiential Learning Good
Experiential Learning:

Authentic learning experiences are provided

  • Satisfactory: learning takes place through ‘hands-on’ experience or simulation
  • Good: learning involves direct experience in a ‘real world context’
  • Very good: learning involves ‘real world experiences’ taking place’ beyond the school walls.
Cooperative Learning Satisfactory

Students brainstorm ideas with a partner or in groups.

Cooperative Learning:

Group and cooperative learning strategies are a priority.

  • Satisfactory:  students work in groups
  • Good: cooperative learning skills are explicitly taught and practiced
  • Very Good: cooperative learning skills are explicitly taught, practiced and assessed
Assessment & Evaluation Poor/Not considered

Unfortunately, there are no tools or suggestions for assessment provided with the resource.

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 Satisfactory
Peer Teaching:

Provides opportunities for students to actively present their knowledge and skills to peers and/or act as teachers and mentors.

  • Satisfactory: incidental teaching that arises from cooperative learning, presentations, etc.
  • Good or Very Good: an opportunity is intentionally created to empower students to teach other students/community members. The audience is somehow reliant on the students' teaching (students are not simply ‘presenting')
Case Studies Poor/Not considered

This is not the focus of this resource.

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

There are some extension activity ideas provided that the teacher could offer to those students who wish to explore the topic more in depth; however, they are not part of the core resource.

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.