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Make Space for Nature

Why Biodiversity is Key to Achieving the Global Goals

Elementary, Middle

Description

Make Space for Nature is one of many lessons from The World's Largest Lesson. This resource includes a four part introductory lesson plan that looks at how the planet's biodiversity impacts the achievement of the Global Goals. In this lesson, students will:

  • understand the importance of the natural world through a series of questions that they will be asked to answer.
  • be introduced to biodiversity by watching a short video and then discussing what they have seen.
  • make a link to the Global Goals 
  • take action to bend the curve

Make Space for Nature also has five follow up action activities to extend student learning that look at the question: How can we create a future in which both people and nature can thrive?

General Assessment

What skills does this resource explicitly teach?

As part of the extension activities, students could learn to participate in a debate, create a campaign film, and create a speech. 

Strengths

  • The resource, as well as the videos, are available in both official languages
  • The videos offer closed captioning for students with hearing impairment
  • The resource includes extension action activities
  • The reproducible hand outs are included in the appendix
  • An extensive guide is provided for the teachers which includes details and questions for each part of the lesson
  • The videos provided in the lesson are of quality and at grade level

Weaknesses

  • Assessment activities are not included in this resource
  • The action activities are extensions and not part of the original lesson therefore would demand more time 

Recommendation of how and where to use it

This is an excellent resource to spark conversations on biodiversity in Science classes. 

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 3
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • 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 4
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Exploring connections strengthens our understandings of relationships to help us make meaning of the world.
        • Investigating change and the diversity of Earth’s systems helps us to develop understandings of the conditions necessary to sustain life.
    • Grade 5
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Wetland Ecosystems
    • Grade 6
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Trees and Forests
    • Grade 7
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Interactions and Ecosystems
  • British Columbia
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    • Grade 3
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Science 3: Living things are diverse, can be grouped, and interact in their ecosystems
    • Grade 4
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Science 4: All living things sense and respond to their environment
  • Manitoba
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    • Grade 4
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Habitat and Communities
    • Grade 6
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Diversity of Living Things
    • Grade 7
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Interactions Within Ecosystems
  • New Brunswick
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    • Grade 3
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Science 3.Our Local Environment: Science Technology Society and Environment (STSE)
        • Science 3: Our Local Environment:Scientific Literacy
  • Newfoundland & Labrador
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    • Grade 4
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Habitats
    • Grade 6
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Diversity of Life
    • Grade 7
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Interaction of Ecosystems
  • Northwest Territories
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    • Grade 4
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Life Systems: Habitats & Communities
    • Grade 6
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Life Systems: Diversity of Living Things
    • Grade 7
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Interactions and Ecosystems
  • Nova Scotia
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    • Grade 4
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      • Science
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        • Science 4: Habitats
    • Grade 6
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Science 6: Diversity of Life
    • Grade 7
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Life Science: Interactions Within Ecosystem
  • Nunavut
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    • Grade 4
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Life Systems: Habitats & Communities
    • Grade 6
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Life Systems: Diversity of Living Things
    • Grade 7
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Interactions and Ecosystems
    • Grade 8
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Interactions in Our Environment
  • Ontario
  • Prince Edward Island
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    • Grade 4
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Habitats
    • Grade 6
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Diversity of Life
    • Grade 7
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Interactions Within Ecosystems
  • Quebec
  • Saskatchewan
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    • Grade 4
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Habitats and Communities
    • Grade 6
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Science 6: Life Science: Diversity of Living Things
    • Grade 7
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Science 7: Life Science: Interactions within Ecosystems
  • Yukon Territory
    • Step 2Select a grade level
    • Grade 3
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Science 3: Living things are diverse, can be grouped, and interact in their ecosystems
    • Grade 4
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Science 4: All living things sense and respond to their environment

Themes Addressed

  • Ecosystems (4)

    • Appreciating the Natural World
    • Biodiversity
    • Habitat Loss
    • Wildlife Protection

Sustainability Education Principles

Principle Rating Explanation
Consideration of Alternative Perspectives Very Good

Students will form their own opinion and take informed positions on different subjects based on videos and information they've received on the topic. Student discussion on the subject is at the center of this lesson.

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 Very Good

The videos provided look at the environmental, the economic and the social effects of loss of biodiversity. 

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

The videos and other resources provided respect the complexity of the loss of biodiversity. 

Respects Complexity:

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

Acting on Learning Satisfactory

At the end of the introductory lesson, students need to discuss what actions they could take to bend the curve. However, students do not put into action their ideas, except if the teacher decides to do the extension activities. 

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

This lesson is centered on students' opinions and discussions on the issue of biodiversity.

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 lesson is centered on preserving biodiversity therefore the natural world. Students complete all activities indoors. 

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

Students get to observe their environment, which is relevant to them. 

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
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 are encouraged to develop and share their opinions during class discussions. 

Open-Ended Instruction :

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

Integrated Learning Good

Parts of this lesson could be used in other subject areas like language. 

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

Students are asked to come up with ways to lessen the loss of biodiversity. 

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 diversity of the learning activities addresses a range of student learning styles. However, strategies for learners with difficulties are not included in this lesson. 

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 Satisfactory
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 have to work in groups during this lesson. 

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

Assessments are not provided in this 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 Good

If action activities are completed, students can perform their speeches to one another. Teachers can record the videos of the speeches or send written copies of student poems to members of local government to call for action.

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

The video included in this lesson depicts real events from the natural world. 

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 Good
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.