National & International Environmental Management
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National & International Environmental Management
What are we as global citizens doing to manage our unique environments?
These resources I have curated are Stage 2 appropriate, and are in line with the K-6 HSIE environment outcome ENS2.6 and the content point ‘Management and care of features, sites, places and environments’.
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Coastal Environment Centre-Education

Coastal Environment Centre-Education | National & International Environmental Management | Scoop.it

The CEC provides educational services for the community and schools (including teachers) through excursions, fieldtrips, walks, workshops, reference material, online resources and curriculum support.

Gabriella Jones's insight:

This resource is a link to a special sector in the Pittwater Council. This website/resource is dedicated to Coastal Environment Education and Care. The site provides many examples and resources about different environmental management strategies that are being used in the local community. This resource can be used by teachers in many ways. For example-

Community Events: The resource has lists and events where students can participate in council endorsed community environmental events. These events will create a connectedness and allow the students to access primary sources of information surrounding environmental management.

Teacher Resources: The website also provides teachers with project ideas, online HSIE themed games developing environmental awareness and other things such as links to other educational and environmental sites.

Excursions: The resource has curriculum linked excursions that are stage specific. Each excursion makes HSIE and Science and Technology links. They teach students about the environment, human impact on the environment, what is being done to help the environment and finally environmental management.

Environment Links:  The resource also provides a lot of information for the teacher on environmental management and what strategies are being used in the local community. Some of these strategies, along with the Councils help and support, can be implemented into your school.

A resource such as this which has many different uses crossing different mediums is changing how teachers interact in the classroom. These resources allow for a multi-dimensional teaching strategy that is catering to each students need. New technologies and their impact has been commented on by Mishra and Koehler in their work ‘Technological Pedagogical Content Knowledge: A Framework for Teacher Knowledge’, stating that “new technologies have changed the nature of the classroom” (Mishra & Koehler, 2006, pg. 1023). The teacher has a plethora of information, activities and resources a mouse click away as a result of using this website. The teacher has the ability to “engage students in activities that go beyond the more passive and individual forms of learning” (Gibert & Hoepper, 2011, pg. 143). The theory that supports this kind of learning is ‘Experiential Learning’ where students are involved, active and engaged in the learning experiences in the classroom (Gibert & Hoepper, 2011). The students are at the centre of the learning experience, not the teacher. Students are “learning by doing” (Gibert & Hoepper, 2011, pg. 143) and this resource provides plenty of ideas for teachers to get their students ‘learning by doing’.

One of the issues raised regarding environmental management on this resource is the amount of waste going to landfill. An activity that a teacher might want to do with their class is to have their students’ start a recycling collection at their school to reduce the amount of waste their school produces. This activity will be having the students ‘learning by doing’, teaching the students that recycling is a strategy to alleviate the impact humans are having on the environment. A numeracy link could be to have the student’s estimate the volume of recycling that the school produces each day/week. This can be recorded and students can the judge and see what weeks were the ones when high quantities of recycling was occurring. An assessment idea linked to these two teaching activities is to have the students create a flow chart of the life of a piece of paper- from forest to the bin. The flow chart should show two alternate endings: one ending in landfill and not being disposed of properly and one ending showing the paper being recycled and being turned into something new. Students should be left with the idea that if there is proper environmental management then we all benefit. This assessment of course would have to occur after there have been learning experiences surrounding the resource system of paper production.  

 

Reference:

Gilbert, R. & Hoepper, B. (2011). Teaching Society and Environment. 4th Edition. South Melbourne: Cengage Learning Australia.

Mishra, P. & Koehler, M.J. (2006). Technological Pedagogical Content Knowledge: A Framework for Teacher Knowledge. Teachers College Record Volume 108, Number 6, pp. 1017-1054

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Calendar of Environmental Events

Calendar of Environmental Events | National & International Environmental Management | Scoop.it

Environmental Events

Gabriella Jones's insight:

This is a valuable resource because it is a complied list of environmental events (each date is a hyperlink to the home page of the event) that the world, the local community and the school can get involved in. This resource can be used to develop a global perspective if, for example, Wold Environment Day is investigated and participated in. The calendar has a number of events that promote environmental management on a school and community level. Students are learning about how to responsibly interact with the environment and how to care for their local or school area. The resource is a great way to get the whole school community involved in environmental awareness days. Each event is promoting a different environmental strategy whether it is Clean Up Australia Day or Keep Australia Beautiful Week. The teacher should talk with the students and investigate the chosen events. It is important for students to be involved in events that promote environmental awareness as it makes the students have a more active role in caring for the environment.

The use of the environmental calendar and the participation in the events creates and ‘authentic learning’ experience as the learning is relevant to the student and applicable to be used outside of school. Gibert and Hoepper define ‘authentic learning’ as “the idea that learning activities need to be closely related to their context of use to facilitate their application in everyday situations beyond school” (Gibert & Hoepper, 2011, pg. 143). Knowledge that can be applied outside of school includes how to responsibly interact with the environment, how to be an aware and knowledgeable global citizen and how to care and manage their environment.

Teachers could use this resource in many ways. One way might be to as a class, create an environmental calendar. All the events are put into the calendar and then different months are assigned to different groups. This group is then responsible for reminding the class about the events and when they occur. For an assessment, students across the grade could select an environmental day or week for the whole school to participate in. For example, Schools Clean Up Day.  Students can then create posters, announcements and banners to display throughout the school. This will create whole school awareness and involvement. Teachers can make this assessment fun and exciting, whilst teaching students how to care for and manage the school environment. This is an authentic learning experience with an assessment for learning as the students are active participants in an event that is firmly based in a relative context (Gibert & Hoepper, 2011, pg. 143). For a literacy link and activity that could be conducted. Have the students write a newsletter to take home to their families explaining all about their chosen day. Students should remember to include appropriate images, details, and facts in their newsletter.  

 

 

Reference:

Gilbert, R. & Hoepper, B. (2011). Teaching Society and Environment. 4th Edition. South Melbourne: Cengage Learning Australia.

 

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'Mother Earth' law to protect Bolivia forests

Bolivia has one of the fastest rates of deforestation in the world, losing more than 300,000 hectares a year. Bolivia has recently approved a law called 'Mother Earth' to fight this rapid deforestation.

Gabriella Jones's insight:

This YouTube video is reporting on the new law that Bolivia has just installed, “The ‘Mother Earth’ law holds the land as sacred and defines it as a living system with rights to be protected from exploitation”. The video is appropriate for the outcome ENS2.6 (content point ‘Management and care of features, sites, places and environments’) as it is showing a global perspective on how people and organisations are interacting and managing environment. In a journal entitled Computers in Schools, the value of YouTube and showing videos within the classroom was questioned. Jones and Cuthrell, the authors of the article in focus, ‘YouTube: Educational Potentials and Pitfalls’, found that “YouTube is becoming an educational tool to enhance learning in innovative ways” (Jones & Cuthrell, 2011). Videos in the class are beneficial to all learners, but especially students who are audio or visual learners (Jones & Cuthrell, 2011). In saying that, technology in the classroom needs to be about more than just passively watching a video. There needs to be further investigation and evaluation by the students to be active and in control of their own learning (Mishra & Koehler, 2006). Therefore, it is beneficial to show videos in the classroom as long as it is a part of a well designed learning experience where students are engaging and applying knowledge that they have learnt. Teachers must also be aware of how to use the technology appropriately and have clear in their planning knowing what they want the students to achieve from watching the video (Mishra & Koehler, 2006).

Within the YouTube video there is a lot of conflicting opinion regarding how the environment should be managed. Discuss with the class how different people have different points of view, different interactions with the environment and want different courses of action. These conflicting opinions should be highlighted to demonstrate to the students how difficult it is to find just one solution regarding environmental management. Before the YouTube video is shown to the class, a few key words must first be explained. Such as, use a map to show the students where Bolivia is, what countries surround it, what type of environment it has. There is also some vocabulary that needs to be explained to the students, such words include, toiling, cultivate, deforestation, and genetically modified.

This video also makes links to another HSIE stage two outcome, that is, Resource Systems SSS2.7. In the video it is commenting on how the environmental management procedures are impacting on the farmers, on the native peoples, and the animals. The farmer says how his livelihood depends on the land, that he takes his coffee berries to the market in the village to sell in order to buy groceries. This is commenting on how technology, the environment and the people are interacting to meet their needs.

 

Have the students compete an assessment where they write in a PMI chart (evaluating the pluses, minuses and interesting issues raised in the video). This assessment is linking to the pedagogical idea that students must engage with videos in order for their learning to be meaningful. Students should be given the opportunity to watch the video a couple of times, have had discussions with their peers and an in-depth discussion teacher before completing this task. The teacher should also play the video, pausing it where necessary, so that the students can refer to it as they write. The student’s attention should be drawn to the difference in opinion within the video. This will help the students write the pluses and minuses raised in the video.

 

As a part of this law a number of rights were given to Mother Earth. They include:

“the right to maintain the integrity of life and natural processes
the right to not have cellular structure modified or genetically altered
the right to continue vital cycles and processes free from human alteration
the right to pure water
the right to clean air
the right to balance, to be at equilibrium
the right to be free of toxic and radioactive pollution
the right to not be affected by mega-infrastructure and development projects that affect the balance of ecosystems and the local inhabitant communities”

Retrieved from: Wall, D. (2011, April 24). Another Green World. Retrieved April 12, 2013, from http://another-green-world.blogspot.com.au/2011/04/bolivia-celebrates-law-granting-rights.html

A literacy strategy could be for the students to write their own laws for their school environment. Students should write laws or rights that promote environmental management and care. An extension of this task would be to observe how well the students adhere to these rules throughout the year. The teacher might also like to write down the 10 most meaningful laws and display it within the classroom.

 

Reference:

Jones, T. & Cuthrell, K. (2011). YouTube: Educational Potentials and Pitfalls. Computers in Schools, 28(1), 1-5. Retrieved from Academic Research Library database: Taylor & Francis Group http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/07380569.2011.553149.

Mishra, P. & Koehler, M.J. (2006). Technological Pedagogical Content Knowledge: A Framework for Teacher Knowledge. Teachers College Record Volume 108, Number 6, pp. 1017-1054

Wall, D. (2011, April 24). Another Green World. Retrieved April 12, 2013, from http://another-green-world.blogspot.com.au/2011/04/bolivia-celebrates-law-granting-rights.html

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Sydney’s Botanic Gardens- Aboriginal Trail

Sydney’s Botanic Gardens- Aboriginal Trail | National & International Environmental Management | Scoop.it
Gabriella Jones's insight:

I selected this resource with the selection criteria for the evaluation of Aboriginal studies and Torres Strait Islander studies in mind. The resource is an excursion idea where teachers take their students to the Sydney’s Botanic Gardens (or other locations identified on the website) to find out about traditional Aboriginal land management. Students will be lead by Aboriginal education officers through specially designed gardens to explore not only traditional land management practices but also “plants that Aboriginal people have used for food, tools and weapons and provide an Indigenous perspective on living with, and from, the native bushland” (www.rbgsyd.nsw.gov.au, 2013). The material and content taught on the excursion and presented on the website is up to date and are closely linked to curriculum requirements and the syllabus outcomes. The excursion values the complexity and the connection to land of the Indigenous people and seeks not to over simplify things, but instead to show the diversity and ingenuity of Indigenous Australians. The information presented on the excursion should not be distressing to any Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander students.

This resource is on a national level focusing, as stated above, on the Indigenous Australians traditional land management practices. In conjunction with this students will also be experiencing the subject matter for the outcome ENS2.6. It states that students: ‘examines some of the practices used by Aboriginal peoples to care for land and water environments’ and also ‘recognises that Aboriginal peoples have a special relationship with the land’. These two points are being demonstrated on the excursion meaning that the excursion is presenting the students with a rich array of knowledge and information.

Excursions are a particularly good learning experience for many reasons. Some reasons include that students are highly engaged with the new setting and experience so that they tend to remember fieldwork and outdoor visits for many years (Dillon et al, 2006, pg. 107). Another is that students are being exposed to environments, cultures, languages and information that they might not normally be exposed to. Teachers must be careful though, “to be effective, fieldwork needs to be carefully planned, thoughtfully implemented and followed up back at school” (Dillon et al, 2006, pg. 110). Therefore, when planning excursions, teachers must make explicit plans and “take account of factors such as students’ fears and phobias, prior experience and preferred learning styles” (Dillon et al, 2006, pg. 110).

During the excursion an Aboriginal education officer will be providing work sheets and teaching your students on the various learning points, once the students get back to the classroom students must be given a chance to affirm this new knowledge and to organise it in some way. An assessment idea is to have the students create a 5 square flow chart. Within the squares, students must draw and write the main steps taken by Aboriginal Australians to manage the land.  This activity has a pedagogical link as it is stated by Dillon et al that field work must be followed up back in the classroom in order for the excursion to be effective (Dillon et al, 2006, pg. 110). Linked with this idea, students should be asked to write a reflection of what they did, saw and experienced during the excursion, noting their favorite parts and plants.

Reference:

Dillon, J., Rickinson, M., Teamey, K., Morris, M., Coi, M., Sanders, D., Benefeild, P. (2006). The value of outdoor learning: evidence from research in the UK and elsewhere. School Science Review (pp. 107-110). Retrieved from Ebrary database http://www.outlab.ie/forums/documents/the_value_of_school_science_review_march_2006_87320_141.pdf.

 

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International Green Roofs policies

International Green Roofs policies | National & International Environmental Management | Scoop.it
Gabriella Jones's insight:

This resource is another site that promotes a global perspective. The site lists different countries and their involvement in the green roof movement. The green roof movement sees roofs across the world being turned into gardens filled with flowers, vegetable patches, fruit trees and other greenery. The green roofs help to remove airborne particles and reduce NOx (atmospheric pollutants). The green roofs also “provide the ability to support plants and invertebrates, and habitat for several birds” (www.livingroofsworld.com, 2013). This environmental management movement is sweeping the world; the countries range from Germany to China. The most interesting part of the green roof project is that it is showing the students how densely populated international cities are managing the environment. These cities are fighting pollution, carbon poisoning and other atmospheric pollutants, but they don’t have the space to install parks or even plant trees in their concrete jungles to help absorb some of these toxins. The green roof movement is an environmental management solution that is economical and using dead space on tops of office buildings. It would be an interesting class project and teaching idea to investigate each country and how they are interpreting the green roof movement. These international efforts can be compared to what is happening in Australia. This sequence of lessons can easily be linked to science outcomes and the information surrounding photosynthesis.

Captured in Gibert and Hoeppers text ‘Teaching society and environment’ are educational researchers Newmann and Wehlage. Their research was surrounding ‘authentic pedagogy’, that is, what strands and concepts led to successful schools and students. One of the five aspects that teachers should develop in their students, as found by Newmann and Wehlage, was a ‘connectedness to the world’ (Gibert & Hoepper, 2011, pg. 143). By investigating as a class what environmental movements are happening internationally and comparing it to what is happening nationally, students are thinking about “contexts beyond school” (Gibert & Hoepper, 2011, pg. 143); which in turn is making them more aware global citizens. Students are “addressing real world public problems or issues” (Gibert & Hoepper, 2011, pg. 143) that are presented in this resource and are investigating what is being done to help solve these problems.

An Assessment idea is to have the students participate in the activity of making a green wall at their school: preferably outside their classroom (teacher note- if a green wall is not appropriate a green floor can be made with students planting flora within a set square). Students are then tasked with the maintenance of the wall throughout the year. During or after this assessment there should be questions and a discussion (and perhaps follow up lessons) about what processes are being used to manage this green wall (e.g. Where does the water in the tap come from? Where does the fertilizer come from? Etc.). One literacy activity that could be linked to this assessment is to have the students keep a weekly journal about the green wall. Another literacy activity is to have the students write an opinion piece on whether or not they think the green walls to be a viable environmental management solution. Students should be assessing their own beliefs and making a judgement on the value of the Green Wall.

 

Reference:

Gilbert, R. & Hoepper, B. (2011). Teaching Society and Environment. 4th Edition. South Melbourne: Cengage Learning Australia.

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