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Quest for Clean Shorelines (Secondary)

Secondary

Description

"Quest for Clean Shorelines" is an action-oriented resource that supports a national initiative to clean up the litter that affects our community shorelines.  Students  investigate the reasons why so much litter is present in and along our waterways and collect valuable data which they use to pinpoint the most problematic litter sources. The activities challenge students to take action to reduce a particular source of litter so that there will be less and less of it each year. The resource is divided into the following parts:

Part A: Getting Ready - Asking Why? These introductory activities will take a week to complete. Students discuss needs and wants to help them realize that we all need water to survive. The movie "Tapped Out: The World Water Crisis" introduces them to key water issues. Students then explore where on earth we find water and how much of it is potable. They choose a local waterway to clean up and predict the results of a preliminary water audit of the site.

Part B: Clean-Up Day - This key component of the resource can be completed in a few days. Safety instructions and a trivia game help prepare students for their clean-up day and a reflection activity is provided as a follow-up. In addition, students are challenged to use the results of their clean-up efforts to create a work of art.

Part C: Sharing the Learning: These activities involve tallying and analyzing the results of the audit and choosing a way to represent them.  Questions explored include why did we find a certain type of litter? and how can we reduce it?  In this section, students must also develop an action plan to reduce a particular type of litter found during their clean-up. This plan must reach out to the whole school community and possibly the community at large.

Part D includes extensions for those who wish to go further than the class action plan. Ideas include adopting a shoreline and further investigation of a the water or waste disposal theme.

General Assessment

Strengths

"Quest for Clean Shorelines" is very relevant and interesting for students since it relates the water crisis to their own lives and their own communities. The introductory movie is well developed and even more important, its author is a teenager - making it that more relevant to high school students.

All aspects of the project are supported with background websites for the teacher, and students when necessary. Assessment tools are provided as well as accommodations and extensions. 

All the activities are clearly linked to each other and prepare the students well for the culminating point: the action project. The activities are well explained, easy to follow and simple to execute with various high school groups. All activities are sufficiently developed, but at the same time, their is room for flexibility and personal preferences (in regards to the teacher) in this project.

What important ideas are implied by the resource, but not taught explicitly?

It is clearly implied that humans cannot continue to use water the way we currently do; rather, we must find ways to make our water usage more sustainable.

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
    • Step 2Select a grade level
    • Grade 9
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      • Environmental Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Environment and Outdoor Education: Environmental Investigations
  • British Columbia
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    • Grade 10
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Life Science: Sustainability of Ecosystems
    • Grade 11
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      • Science & Technology
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Science and Technology 11:Science Module: Natural Resources and the Environment
    • Grade 12
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      • Geography
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Geography 12:Resources and Environmental Sustainability
  • Manitoba
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    • Grade 10
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      • Science
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        • Senior 2 Science: Dynamics of Ecosystems
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      • Geography
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        • World Geography: A Human Perspective - World Resources, Energy, and Environment
      • Social Studies
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        • Citizenship and Sustainability: Area of Inquiry: Environment
        • Global Issues
  • New Brunswick
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    • Grade 10
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      • Science
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        • Sustainability of Ecosystems
    • Grade 12
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      • Environmental Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Environmental Science 120: Sustainable Development
      • Geography
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        • Canadian Geography 120:Managing Natural Resources
      • Social Studies
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • World Issues 120: Introduction to the Global Village
        • World Issues 120: Issues Facing the Global Village
  • Newfoundland & Labrador
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    • Grade 10
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Science 1206: Sustainability of Ecosystems
    • Grade 11
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      • Science
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        • Science 2200: Ecosytems
    • Grade 12
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      • Environmental Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Environmental Science 3205: Introduction to Environmental Science
        • Environmental Science 3205: Water Use & the Environment
  • Northwest Territories
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    • Grade 10
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Science 14:Investigating Matter and Energy in the Environment
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      • Civic Studies
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Challenges in the Global Environment
  • Nova Scotia
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      • Science
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        • Science 10: Sustainability of Ecosystems
    • Grade 12
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      • Geography
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Global Geography: Planet Earth
  • Nunavut
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    • Grade 10
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Science 14: Investigating Matter and Energy in the Environment
    • Grade 12
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      • Environmental Studies
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Environmental Studies 35: Northern Environmental Issues
  • Ontario
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    • Grade 9
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Geography
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Issues in Canadian Geography (Academic): Interactions in the Physical Environment
        • Issues in Canadian Geography (Academic): Managing Canada's Resources and Industries
        • Issues in Canadian Geography (Applied): Interactions in the Physical Environment
        • Issues in Canadian Geography (Applied): Liveable Communities
        • Issues in Canadian Geography (Applied): Managing Canada's Resources and Industries
      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Science (Academic):Biology: Sustainable Ecosystems
        • Science (Applied): Biology: Sustainable Ecosystems and Human Activity
    • Grade 10
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      • Civic Studies
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        • Civics and Citizenship (Open): Civic Engagement and Action
    • Grade 11
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      • Environmental Science
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        • Environmental Science (Univ/College Prep.) Human Health and the Environment
        • Environmental Science (Univ/College Prep.) Reducing and Managing Waste
        • Environmental Science (Univ/College Prep.) Scientific Solutions to Contemporary Environmental Challenges
        • Environmental Science (Workplace Prep.) Human Health and the Environment
        • Environmental Science (Workplace Prep.) Human Impact on the Environment
        • Environmental Science (Workplace Prep.) Natural Resource Science and Management
    • Grade 12
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      • Geography
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Global Connections
        • The Environment & Resource Management (Workplace Preparation): Human-Environment Interactions
        • The Environment & Resource Management (Workplace Prfeparation)
  • Prince Edward Island
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    • Grade 9
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      • Social Studies
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Interdependence: Atlantic Canada in the Global Community: Citizenship in the Global Community
    • Grade 10
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      • Science
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        • Science 421A: Sustainability of Ecosystems
        • Science 431A: Ecosystems
    • Grade 12
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      • Environmental Science
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        • Environmental Science 621A: Environmental Challenges and Successes
      • Geography
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        • What can I do?
        • Geography 621A Global Issues
        • Geography 621A Global Issues : Inquiry- What are the issues?
  • Quebec
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    • Grade 10
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        • Environmental Science & Technology: The Earth and Space
  • Saskatchewan
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    • Grade 10
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Science 10: Climate and Ecosystem Dynamics
  • Yukon Territory
    • Step 2Select a grade level
    • Grade 10
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Life Science: Sustainability of Ecosystems
    • Grade 11
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Science & Technology
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Science Module: Natural Resources and the Environment
    • Grade 12
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Geography
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Geography 12: Resources and Environmental Sustainability

Themes Addressed

  • Citizenship (2)

    • General Guide to Taking Action
    • Sustainable Consumption
  • Human Health & Environment (1)

    • Environmental Contaminants & Health Hazards
  • Water (2)

    • Water Use
    • Watershed Protection

Sustainability Education Principles

Principle Rating Explanation
Bias Minimization Good

The focus of the resource is on the individual and what each of us can do to make things better.

Bias Minimization: Presents as many different points of view as necessary to fairly address the issue(s).
Multiple Dimensions of Problems & Solutions Good

The resource effectively addresses the environmental aspects of water quality and healthy watersheds.  Economic and social ramifications of access to clean water are raised in the movie Tapped Out.  There are opportunities for teachers & students to explore the interplay among the three dimensions.

Multiple Dimensions of Problems & Solutions:

The resource effectively addresses multiple dimensions of problems and solutions. These should include the environmental, economic and social dimensions of the issue(s) being explored.

Respects Complexity Good

The introductory activities do a good job of presenting the problem and its many facets. A proper planning period precedes the actual clean-up activity. There is analysis of what was found during the clean-up and thus what can be done to change those results in the future.

Respects Complexity: The complexity of problems is respected. A systems-thinking approach is encouraged.
Action Experience Very Good

Students are not only given the chance to participate in a clean-up activity but also to do an in-depth analysis of what was found, where it came from and how they can improve the situation so that the next clean-up yields better results. This last part includes reaching out of the classroom and into the community.

Action Experience: Provides opportunities for authentic action experiences in which students can work to make positive change in their communities.
  • Poor = action activities poorly developed
  • Satisfactory = action opportunities are extensions instead of being integral to the main part of the activity
Action Skills Good

The project explicitly teaches students how to perform an audit (data collection) which is essential before any action can be taken.

Action Skills: Explicitly teaches the skills needed for students to take effective action (e.g. letter-writing, consensus-building, etc.).
Empathy & Respect for Humans Satisfactory

The movie Tapped Out: The World Water Crisis will foster empathy for people in other countries, especially poorer countries.

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 conducting the clean-up students will have an opportunity to gain greater respect for other life forms that depend on the same water they use.

Personal Affinity with Earth: Actively encourages a personal affinity with non-humans and with Earth. For example, this may involve practical and respectful experiences out-of-doors.
Locally-Focused Good

Most communities have a watershed that can be central to this action project, thus making the resource very relevant to all learners.

Locally-Focused: Encourages learning that is locally-focused/made concrete in some way and is relevant to the lives of the learners.
Past, Present & Future Good

Although the resource presents facts and images that may be hard to accept at first, especially those concerning poorer countries, the focus is on the future and that it is possible to alter our habits and improve our water situation. It also gives tools and skills to students to become activist so they feel empowered to change things on a global level.

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 Very Good

All of the activities in this resource from the simplest (vocabulary exercise) to the complex (action project) are structured so that multiple, complex answers are possible.

Open-Ended Instruction :

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

Interdisciplinary and Multidisciplinary Learning Good

The resource focuses on science (environmental). In addition, students are required to create a sculpture using the litter collected during the clean-up thus integrating art into the project. Math elements (graphing) and some writing are included.

Interdisciplinary and Multidisciplinary Learning: Multidisciplinary= addresses a number of different subjects Interdisciplinary= integrated approach that blurs subject lines Good: The resource provides opportunities for learning in a number of traditional 'subject' areas (eg. Language Arts, Science, Math, Art, etc.). Very Good: The resource takes an integrated approach to teaching that blurs the lines between subject boundaries.
Discovery Learning Good

Students will discover the main causes of pollution for their chosen waterway and try to come up with possible solutions to reduce those causes within their community.

Discovery Learning:

Learning activities are constructed so that students discover and build knowledge for themselves and develop largely on their own an understanding of concepts, principles and relationships. They often do this by wrestling with questions, and/or solving problems by exploring their environment, and/or physically manipulating objects and/or performing experiments.

  • Satisfactory = Students are provided with intriguing questions, materials to use & some direction on how to find answers. The learning involves unique experience & provides some opportunity for an 'ah-hah' event
  • Good = Students are provided with intriguing questions, materials to use, & make their own decisions on how to find answers. The learning involves unique experience & provides definite opportunity for an 'ah-hah' event.
  • Very Good = Students choose what questions to investigate as well as the materials/strategies to use to answer them.
Values Clarification Good

During the action part of the project  students will clearly be given a chance to focus on what is important to them and their community.

Values Clarification: Students are explicitly provided with opportunities to identify, clarify and express their own beliefs/values.
  • Poor = Students are not explicitly given an opportunity to clarify their own values.
  • Satisfactory = Students are given a formal opportunity to clarify their own values. The range of perspectives in the resource is limited, therefore, students do not have an appropriate amount of information to clarify their own values.
Differentiated Instruction Good

Activities address both the cognitive and affective domains. In addition, accommodations are suggested throughout the resource as are idreas for extending the learning.

Differentiated Instruction: Activities address a range of learning styles/different intelligences. They teach to both cognitive and affective domains. Accommodations are suggested for people with learning difficulties.
Experiential Learning Very Good
Experiential Learning: Direct, authentic experiences are used.
  • Satisfactory = simulation
  • Good = authentic experience
  • Very Good = authentic experience related to the primary goal of the lesson
Cooperative Learning Satisfactory
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 Very Good

Several assessment activities are built into the activities, both formative and summative. Several tools are included to help with the assessment portion of the project (rubrics, etc.).

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 Very Good

Students will be sharing their findings of the clean-up as well as their action plan with the community.

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 Good

Case studies are included both in the introduction and the final parts of the action project to help students gain a deeper understanding of the issue.

Case Studies: Relevant case studies are used. Case studies are thorough descriptions of real events in real situations that can be used to examine concepts in an authentic context.
Locus of Control Very Good

Students are able to choose in several aspects of this project from the daily preparatory activities to the project itself and its solutions.

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.