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Circular Economy, Sustainability and Climate Action

Secondary

Description

This resource is one of twelve found in Green Learning's ECO 360, a curriculum that provides a comprehensive study of the circular economy. 

In Circular Economy, Sustainability and Climate Action, students will learn about the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. Learners will explore how a circular economy for plastics fits within the climate action goals of a country

By the end of this activity students will be able to: 

  • identify and describe United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals 
  • understand how a circular economy for plastics should be an important aspect of climate action goals of a country
  • understand Canada’s climate action goals and strategy for tackling plastic waste

At the end of this activity, students will be asked consolidation questions that can be used an an evaluation of learning by the teacher. 

General Assessment

What skills does this resource explicitly teach?

This lesson is focused on content and therefore does not teach skills.

Strengths

  • Background information on the issue is provided for teachers and students
  • This resource is one of twelve on a circular economy which provides the option for teachers to expand on the subject 
  • The lesson is well planned for teachers
  • At the end of the activity, students are asked to consolidate their learning by answering reflection questions that could be used to assess their learning
  • The resource is up to date and relevant to learners

Weaknesses

  • Teachers will need to register with Green Learning to access this resource
  • This resource does not provide modifications for learners with difficulties

Recommendation of how and where to use it

The lesson may be used as part of a larger unit on the study of the role of plastics in climate change and our society. 

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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    • Grade 9
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      • Environmental Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Environment and Outdoor Education: Environmental Core
    • Grade 10
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      • Social Studies
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Social Studies 10-1(Perspectives on Globalization) Globalization & Sustainable Prosperity
        • Social Studies 10-2 (Living in a Globalizing World) Globalisation and Sustainable Prosperity
        • Social Studies 10-4 (Living in a Globalizing World) Globalisation and Sustainable Prosperity
    • Grade 12
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      • Biology
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        • Biology 30: Population and Community Dynamics
      • Geography
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        • World Geography 30: World Patterns of Physical Elements
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      • Science
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        • Science 9: The biosphere, geosphere, hydrosphere, and atmosphere are interconnected, as matter cycles and energy flows through them.
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Earth Science 11: The transfer of energy through the atmosphere creates weather and is affected by climate change
    • Grade 12
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      • Environmental Science
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        • Environmental Science 12: Human activities cause changes in the global climate system
        • Environmental Science 12: Living sustainably supports the well-being of self, community, and Earth.
      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Specialized Science 12: Climate change impacts biodiversity and ecosystem health
      • Social Studies
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        • Physical Geography 12: Interactions between human activities and the atmosphere affect local and global weather and climate
  • Manitoba
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      • Science
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        • Senior 2 Science: Weather Dynamics
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        • Citizenship and Sustainability: Area of Inquiry: Environment
        • Global Issues
  • New Brunswick
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    • Grade 9
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        • Science 9 Ecosystem Dynamics: Learning and Living Sustainably (STSE)
        • Science 9 Ecosystem Dynamics: The Nature of Science
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        • Learning and Living Sustainably (STSE)
        • Science 10 Science for Sustainable Societies
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      • Geography
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        • Physical Geography 110: The Atmosphere
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      • Environmental Science
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        • Introduction to Environmental Science 120: An Overview of Environmental Science
        • Introduction to Environmental Science 120: Investigating Environmental Issues
        • Introduction to Environmental Science 120: Sustainable Development
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    • Grade 10
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      • Science
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        • Science 1206: Weather Dynamics
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      • Science
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        • Science 2200: Weather Dynamics
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      • Environmental Science
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        • Environmental Science 3205: Introduction to Environmental Science
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        • World Geography 3200/3202: World Climate Patterns
  • Northwest Territories
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    • Grade 10
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      • Science
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        • Experiential Science 10, Terrestial Systems: Climatology and Meteorology
      • Social Studies
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        • Social Studies 10-1(Perspectives on Globalization) Globalization & Sustainable Prosperity
        • Social Studies 10-2 (Living in a Globalizing World) Globalisation and Sustainable Prosperity
        • Social Studies 10-4(Living in a Globalizing World) Globalisation and Sustainable Prosperity
  • Nova Scotia
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        • Atlantic Canada in the Global Community: Environment
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        • Science 10: Weather Dynamics
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      • Environmental Science
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        • AP Environmental Science: Global Change
  • Nunavut
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    • Grade 10
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      • Science
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        • Experiential Science 10, Terrestial Systems: Climatology and Meteorology
      • Social Studies
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        • Social Studies 10-1(Perspectives on Globalization) Globalization & Sustainable Prosperity
        • Social Studies 10-2 (Living in a Globalizing World) Globalisation and Sustainable Prosperity
  • Ontario
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    • Grade 9
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      • Geography
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        • Issues in Canadian Geography (Academic): Interactions in the Physical Environment
        • Issues in Canadian Geography (Academic): Managing Canada's Resources and Industries
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      • Science
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        • Science (Applied): Biology: Sustainable Ecosystems and Human Activity
    • Grade 11
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      • Environmental Science
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        • Environmental Science (Workplace Prep.) Human Impact on the Environment
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        • Forces of Nature: Physical Processes and Disasters (Univ./College Prep.): The Physical Environment: Sustainability and Stewardship
        • Regional Geography (Univ./College Prep.): Sustainability and Stewardship
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      • Geography
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        • Living in a Sustainable World (Workplace Prep.) Ecosystems and Human Activity
        • Living in a Sustainable World (Workplace Prep.) Community Action
        • The Environment & Resource Management (Univ./College Prep) : Ecological Systems: Interactions and Interdependence
        • The Environment & Resource Management (Univ./College Prep.):Sustainability and Stewardship of Natural Resources
        • The Environment & Resource Management (Workplace Preparation): Human-Environment Interactions
        • World Geography: Urban Patterns & Populations (Univ. / College Prep.): Sustainability and Stewardship
        • World Issues: A Geographic Analysis (College Prep.):Sustainability and Stewardship
        • World Issues: A Geographic Analysis (Univ. Prep.):Sustainability and Stewardship
  • Prince Edward Island
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    • Grade 10
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      • Science
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        • Science 431A: Earth and Space Science, Weather Systems
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      • Environmental Science
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        • Environmental Science 621A: Environmental Challenges and Successes
        • Environmental Science 621A: Introduction to Environmental Science
  • Quebec
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    • Grade 9
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      • Social Studies
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        • The Contemporary World: Environment
  • Saskatchewan
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    • Grade 10
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      • Geography
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        • Geography 10: Climate
      • Science
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        • Science 10: Climate and Ecosystem Dynamics
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      • Social Studies
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        • Social Studiees 20:World Issues - Environment
  • Yukon Territory
    • Step 2Select a grade level
    • Grade 9
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Science 9: The biosphere, geosphere, hydrosphere, and atmosphere are interconnected, as matter cycles and energy flows through them.
    • Grade 11
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Environmental Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Environmental Science 11: Human practices affect the sustainability of ecosystems
      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Earth Science 11: The transfer of energy through the atmosphere creates weather and is affected by climate change
    • Grade 12
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Environmental Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Environmental Science 12: Human activities cause changes in the global climate system
        • Environmental Science 12: Living sustainably supports the well-being of self, community, and Earth.
      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Specialized Science 12: Climate change impacts biodiversity and ecosystem health
      • Social Studies
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Physical Geography 12: Interactions between human activities and the atmosphere affect local and global weather and climate

Themes Addressed

  • Air, Atmosphere & Climate (1)

    • Climate Change
  • Citizenship (1)

    • Sustainable Consumption
  • Waste Management (2)

    • Rethink, Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
    • Source Reduction

Sustainability Education Principles

Principle Rating Explanation
Consideration of Alternative Perspectives Very Good

After looking at case studies, students will have a good understanding of the connection of plastic pollution to climate change and the sustainable development goals. They will be able to dive into Canada’s climate action goals, and how tackling plastic pollution is addressed there. Students will have the chance to form their own opinion and answer consolidation questions based on what they believe. 

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 Satisfactory

The issue of plastic pollution and climate change has economic, environmental, and social implications. The exploration of these considerations is however beyond the objectives of this lesson. 

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 Very Good
Respects Complexity:

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

Acting on Learning Satisfactory

This resource does not ask students to take action. It does however look at what Canada is doing to take action on reducing plastic pollution. 

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 Very Good

At the end of the lesson, students will answer some consolidation questions where they will be able to clarify and express their own beliefs on the issue of plastic pollution and climate change. 

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

While learning about the connection between plastic pollution and climate change, students will gain an appreciation for the natural world. However, all learning will take place inside the classroom. 

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 Good

Students will be looking at case studies based in Canada. Students will also learn what Canada is doing to act on this issue making it relevant to Canadian learners. 

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 Very Good

Students will gain an understanding of what caused climate change, where we are at in the present on this issue, and how the UN sustainable goals are building a positive vision for the future. 

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

Students will get to share their opinion on the topic throughout the lesson in discussions as well as their reflections in their workbook. 

Open-Ended Instruction :

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

Integrated Learning Satisfactory

Although this lesson is mostly geared toward Science courses, it could be used to spark some debates in language classes. 

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 Poor/Not considered

This lesson is mostly prescribed activities however it may promote students to think about what actions they could take to help with reducing plastic pollution and climate change. 

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

The variety of activities in this lesson will adress well the needs of visual, auditory, and kinesthetic learners. However, strategies for learners with difficulties are not provided. 

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 Poor/Not considered

This is not a focus of this resource.

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 will work in groups to complete activities in this resource. 

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 Satisfactory

Consolidation questions are provided at the end of the lesson to help teachers assess student learning, however checklists and rubrics are not provided. 

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 Poor/Not considered
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

Students will explore how plastic pollution is connected to climate change. This is a real life problem and current in society at the moment. 

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

The lesson is very directed and moves tightly through a series of steps. Many resources are provided in the lesson if students want to further explore the issue. 

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.