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- A project of
“Producing Garbage” is one of a series of lessons that uses active learning to teach young children concepts associated with understanding their ecological footprint. Students explore the environmental impacts of garbage from the perspective of reducing waste through smart consumer choices, recycling and re-using household items. As they critically examine their own waste production learners will participate in an educational experience where they:
This resource supports Science and Social Studies outcomes related to exploring human impacts on the environment, pollution, stewardship and global issues. The lesson could become the basis of a multi-faceted project that involves the class involved in creating positive change in school. A waste audit would provide information about where performance could improve. A detailed list of action items could include:
As the school achieves their waste reduction goals the class could prepare and post public awareness articles in local community newsletters and encourage local citizens to also reduce the amount of waste they produce.
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||Good|
The activities support the development of new learning where students are able to link how garbage can pollute air, water and the land and understand the relationship between human decisions and a healthy environment.
|Consideration of Alternative Perspectives: |
|Multiple Dimensions of Problems & Solutions||Good|
Students will gain an understanding that consumer demand can influence product development and supply. The recent elimination of plastic bags in many communities is used as an example of how personal choice can support the environment.
|Multiple Dimensions of Problems & Solutions: |
Effectively addresses the environmental, economic and social dimensions of the issue(s) being explored.
Many Canadians understand the importance of recycling but this lesson emphasizes that the best environmental choice is to reduce our consumption of single use items and products with excess packaging.
|Respects Complexity: |
The complexity of the problems/issues being discussed is respected.
|Acting on Learning||Good|
The culminating activity "Count Yourself In" has students identify 5 personal goals to reduce the amount of garbage they produce. The achievement of these objectives is tracked in class.
|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
|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|
One of the extension ideas suggests a garbage walk where students collect litter around their community. This exercise will encourage concern about nature as learners observe visible evidence of pollution.
|Personal Affinity with Earth: |
Encourages a personal affinity with -the natural world.
The lesson challenges students to think about their own impact on the natural world.
|Locally-Focused Learning: |
Includes learning experiences that take advantage of issues/elements within the local community.
|Past, Present & Future||Satisfactory|
Student driven strategies for reducing their environmental impact support looking towards the future and the likelihood of long-lasting changes in the way they think about sustainability.
|Past, Present & Future: Promotes an understanding of the past, a sense of the present, and a positive vision for the future.|
Exploration with hands-on activities supports evidence based learning to foster dialogue about an important conservation issue.
Lessons are structured so that multiple/complex answers are possible; students are not steered toward one 'right' answer.
Although developed as a Science lesson, the relay race could be incorporated into a Physical Education class.
|Integrated Learning: |
Learning brings together content and skills from more than one subject area
The hands-on aspect of the lesson actively involves students in new learning to support independent decision making.
|Inquiry Learning: |
Learning is directed by questions, problems, or challenges that students work to address.
The physical activity component of this lesson will appeal to kinesthetic learners.
|Differentiated Instruction: |
Activities address a range of student learning styles, abilities and readiness.
The experiential nature of the hands-on activities could be further developed by involving learners involved in a complete waste audit of the school to define areas of improvement.
|Experiential Learning: |
Authentic learning experiences are provided
|Cooperative Learning||Poor/Not considered|
|Cooperative Learning: |
Group and cooperative learning strategies are a priority.
|Assessment & Evaluation||Poor/Not considered|
|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.
Individuals actively reflect on how they deal with garbage in their own lives and will likely develop a new awareness of how they could reduce what they throw away with conscious choices.
|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|
Students have a great deal of choice in the decision-making process where they identify strategies for lowering their environmental footprint.
|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.|