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Living on the Edge

Overview - Ecology/Sustainability Theme

This module addresses the mathematical concepts of fractions, ratios and proportions, data tables and graphs, and statistics with experimental and theoretical outcomes in the context of ecology and sustainability. Students gather data about the state of their environment and draw conclusions of the impacts of our technological world. They design and test various alternatives to our unsustainable practices.

Module Objective

Examine the effects that influence the symbiotic relationships between human-made and natural worlds; and between populations and their environment.

Key Concepts

  • Ecology
  • Agriculture/Biotechnology
  • Data Analysis

Challenge Activity

Teams of students are each assigned 25 square meters of land around the school building. They are to collect all of the trash found in that area, recording type and quantity. Data is analyzed to determine the extent of the litter problem.

Learning Cycles

Mathematics

1. A Tour of Your Trash

Students will investigate the rate at which trash is generated and compare this information to the rate at which landfills are reaching capacity. Students will flexibly convert between fractions, decimals, and percents to create visual representations of the trash data they collect.

A Tour of Your Trash

Objectives

On completing this learning cycle, the students will be able to:

  • Convert between fractions, decimals, and percents to solve problems
  • Use ratios and proportions to represent quantitative relationships
  • Develop an understanding of large numbers by recognizing and appropriately using exponential, scientific, and calculator notation
  • Calculate area and volume of various shapes

Time

The following guidelines are based on a 50-minute class period:

  • Exploring: 3-4 class periods
  • Applying the Idea: 2 class periods
  • Assessment: 1-2 class periods

Equipment / Materials

The following equipment and materials will be needed to conduct this activity with a classroom of 28 students:

Exploring

  • Chart paper
  • Markers
  • Internet access
  • Printed research materials
  • Pairs of disposable latex or plastic gloves
  • Newspaper, plastic, or other materials to cover work area
  • Several extra garbage bags
  • Trash
  • Glue
  • Paper plates or card stock for creating circle graphs
  • 28 protractors
  • 28 compasses
  • 28 rulers

Applying the Idea

  • Internet access
  • Printed research materials
  • Glue
  • Paper plates or card stock for creating circle graphs
  • 28 protractors
  • 28 compasses
  • 28 rulers

Assessment

  • 28 cups mixed birdseed
  • Internet access or printed research materials
  • Glue
  • Paper plates or card stock for creating circle graphs
  • 28 protractors
  • 28 compasses
  • 28 rulers

2. Fall Haul

Students will play the role of an accountant to determine the success of a blue corn farmer. They will use both contrived and real data to determine the financial status of Mr. Swaggerty’s farm at the end of a fiscal year.

Fall Haul

Objectives

On completing this learning cycle, the students will be able to:

  • Model and solve conceptualized problems using various representations, such as graphs, tables, and equations
  • Develop real-life meaning for integers
  • Create appropriate graphical representations of data

Time

The following guidelines are based on a 50-minute class period:

  • Exploring: 4 class periods
  • Applying the Idea: 1 class period
  • Assessment: 2 class periods

Equipment / Materials

The following equipment and materials will be needed to conduct this activity with a classroom of 28 students:

Exploring

  • 14 calculators
  • 14 copies of Simulation #1 receipts
  • 14 copies of Simulation #2 receipts
  • 28 business envelopes
  • Internet access, newspaper, or access to radio news station or television news station

Applying the Idea

  • Access to printed and/or online research materials
  • 14 calculators

3. Made To Order

Students will complete a simulation to discover the meaning of theoretical and experimental outcomes as they relate to probability.

Made to Order

Objectives

On completing this learning cycle, the students will be able to:

  • Understand and use appropriate terminology to describe theoretical and experimental outcomes

Time

The following guidelines are based on a 50-minute class period:

  • Exploring: 3 class periods
  • Applying the Idea: 2 class periods
  • Assessment: 2-3 class periods

Equipment / Materials

The following equipment and materials will be needed to conduct this activity with a classroom of 28 students:

Exploring

  • 100 blue beads
  • 100 red beads
  • 2 paper sacks

Applying the Idea

  • Access to printed and/or online resource materials

4. The Balancing Act

In this learning cycle, students will discover the components of a balanced environment. Students should understand that natural environments contain living plants and animals that will eventually die for one reason or another. Students will uncover the positive and negative factors that affect various populations. They will also discover the complexity of the dependencies found in various ecosystems and determine what affects the livelihood of the living components.

The Balancing Act

Objectives

On completing this learning cycle, the students will be able to:

  • Formulate questions, design studies, and collect data about characteristics within one population
  • Use conjectures to formulate new questions and utilize reasoning skills to reach logical conclusions
  • Construct a scaled map
  • Develop an understanding of population density

Time

The following guidelines are based on a 50-minute class period:

  • Exploring: 3 class periods
  • Applying the Idea: 2 class periods

Equipment / Materials

The following equipment and materials will be needed to conduct this activity with a classroom of 28 students:

Exploring

  • 60 sheets of centimeter graph paper
  • 30 copies of each article Brown Bears, White-tailed Deer, and Raccoons
  • Colored pencils
  • Research materials

Applying the Idea

  • Research materials

Science

1. What's That Smell?

The focus of this learning cycle is ecological relationships. Students will identify parts of composting that will help to support plants in healthy ways through experimentation. They will address concepts such as why certain elements are essential and in what proportions these elements should be distributed to encourage healthy plant growth. Also, students will begin to understand how soil properties affect plant growth.

Students will also determine how composting provides other benefits and how the process can be easily incorporated into a household. Testing factors will allow students to understand the process. It may be possible to use the compost after this module is completed. How is energy transferred from the ingredients to the soils? How do you know energy has been transferred? Students will conduct a soil test with different types of soils to determine nitrogen, potassium, and phosphorus levels in the samples. They will also test pH and begin to see how different soils can help different kind of plants. They will relate soil nutrients to the needs of the plant to survive as well as the natural processes to develop the nutrients.

Students will conduct a controlled experiment to examine light, heat, water, temperature, and soil effects on a plant's health. Students will project how healthy plants will multiply quickly in the right conditions. They should understand that different plants need different conditions, compare these results with the composting and soil testing results, and determine some factors for good growing.

What's That Smell?

Objectives

On completing this learning cycle, the students will be able to:

  • Describe the conditions that must be present for a plant to grow
  • Identify nutrients that promote plant growth that are typically found in soil

Time

The following guidelines are based on a 50-minute class period:

  • Exploring: 3 class periods
  • Applying the Idea: 2 class periods
  • Assessment: 3 class periods

Equipment / Materials

The following equipment and materials will be needed to conduct this activity with a classroom of 28 students:

Exploring

  • 7 craft knives or heavy scissors
  • 28 2-liter bottles
  • Old panty hose or cheesecloth
  • Composting materials such as lettuce, vegetable peelings, coffee grounds, grass clippings, and fruit scraps shredded
  • Large bag of potting soil or topsoil or local soil from outside
  • Different soils for testing
  • Water
  • Liquid thermometers
  • 35 rubber bands
  • Plastic wrap or baggies
  • Masking tape or labels
  • 28 nails
  • Earthworms or red worms
  • Measurement tools for mL
  • Balance scale
  • pH test strips
  • Soil test kits
  • Tap water

Applying the Idea

  • Heat and light sources for good plant growing
  • Pots or growing containers
  • Covers for the containers
  • Soils
  • Distilled water
  • Trowels
  • Plants
  • Compost that is already established or fertilizer
  • Thermometers
  • Liquid-measuring tools
  • Gloves

Assessment

  • Writing materials or computer

2. Growing Up

Students will be investigating the process of seed germination in this learning cycle. Students will explore how seeds germinate and what conditions are needed for the process. They should grow as many kinds of seeds as possible in different conditions and examine the seeds at various stages of growth, particularly for germinating.

Students will be designing a control experiment to examine seed germination and the effects of different soil types. Encourage your students to begin their experimental design with a hypothesis. You will want to find a variety of seeds for this experience. Perhaps some of your student’s parents collect seeds and can share some with your class. You also might try using Wisconsin Fast Plants for this learning cycle so that students can witness the entire growth cycle of a plant. More information about Fast Plants can be found on the Internet.

Growing Up

Objectives

On completing this learning cycle, the students will be able to:

  • Describe the process of seed germination
  • Select the best soil types for seeds to grow beyond the germination process

Time

The following guidelines are based on a 50-minute class period:

  • Exploring: 2 class periods
  • Applying the Idea: 2 class periods
  • Assessment: 2 class periods

Equipment / Materials

The following equipment and materials will be needed to conduct this activity with a classroom of 28 students:

Exploring

  • 14 scalpels
  • 14 tweezers or forceps
  • Various types of seeds
  • Various containers
  • Zipper baggies with paper towel
  • Various types of soil
  • Water
  • Liquid measuring devices

Applying the Idea

  • Various types of seeds
  • Various types of soil
  • Containers for experiments

Assessment

  • Research information from the Applying the Idea activity.

3. To Be Or Not To Be (Organic)

For this activity, students will use diseased plants or insect-infested plants. Students will confirm and monitor the diseased plant by examining how disease affects the structure and function of plants by experimenting on plants with disease. They will explore the concept of disease and what disease does to the cells, structure, and function of an organism. Such exploration occurs through examination of diseased plant cells under a microscope compared to healthy cells. Students will explore various organic and inorganic techniques for helping the plant and compare these methods to nature’s ways of fighting pests. The balance between plants is also explored. Students will consider how diseases, pests, and plants interact to maintain a balance system.

By capturing the run-off water from watering the plants students will look for traces of insecticides, pesticide and fertilizer using HACHE water test kits. What do changes in the water condition tell us about the environmental effects of these chemicals?

To Be or Not to Be (Organic)

Objectives

On completing this learning cycle, the students will be able to:

  • Compare the effects of organic and manufactured products used in promoting plant growth
  • Describe how populations can increase at rapid rates without disease, as is the case in agriculture
  • Explain how disease affects plants at the cellular level

Time

The following guidelines are based on a 50-minute class period:

  • Exploring: 5 class periods
  • Applying the Idea: 3 class periods
  • Assessment: 7 class periods

Equipment / Materials

The following equipment and materials will be needed to conduct this activity with a classroom of 28 students:

Exploring

  • Soil
  • Containers for growing
  • Diseased plants
  • Microscopes
  • Hand lenses
  • Slides
  • Scalpels
  • Slide covers
  • Treatment materials for the health of the plant; determined by the students

Applying the Idea

  • Research materials including brochures from local garden centers on plants and disease control, the Internet, books related to plant disease

4. Millions and Millions of Species

Students will choose from the plant, animal, or protozoan kingdom to research to determine the roles of the population, function, structure, classification of groups, and roles in the group. The information they have learned about classification and population is based on overall characteristics in the research. They will determine what a population really is by exploring daphnia population in their classes, using many possible controls for experimentation. The daphnia reproduce rapidly and can easily be watched over a week to see effects of the environment on these organisms.

Students will make comparisons between groups of populations living in small habitats in a local area or schoolyard and collect data about populations in their locale and what the populations need in order to survive there. Students will take population counts, if possible, and look at ratios of groups. They will make comparisons between what makes a habitat and what makes an ecosystem. They will use what they know about daphnia to make comparisons and connections between populations and the environment in which they live. What effects might be happening to the local habitat that affects the population? They will use the grid information from the math section to map out the location of the area studied.

Millions and Millions of Species

Objectives

On completing this learning cycle, the students will be able to:

  • Describe how different animal and plant species live together in an ecosystem
  • Describe the factors that limit and promote population growth
  • Compare general characteristics of living organisms including classification systems used to organize and sort them

Time

The following guidelines are based on a 50-minute class period:

  • Exploring I: 3 class periods
  • Exploring II: 3 class periods
  • Applying the Idea: 4 class periods
  • Assessment: 1 class period

Equipment / Materials

The following equipment and materials will be needed to conduct this activity with a classroom of 28 students:

Exploring I

  • 2 aquariums
  • 2 air bubbles or air stones
  • 2 pumps for the bubbles
  • Lights for aquariums
  • Thermometers for aquarium
  • 7 liquid thermometers
  • Plastic aquarium tubing
  • Aquarium rock
  • Rams horn snail
  • 150 or more daphnia
  • Green algae
  • Yeast
  • Soy flour
  • De-chlorinator
  • Shrimp nets or finely meshed aquarium fish nets
  • Microscopes
  • Hand lenses
  • Small plastic vials with lids
  • Plastic compartments to count populations
  • Microscope slides
  • Ringers solution
  • Rubber washers
  • Petroleum jelly
  • Eyedroppers
  • Basters or some type of siphon for the daphnia
  • mm rulers
  • Timer for the lights
  • pH testers
  • Ways to vary temperature such as ice supply

Exploring II

  • Numerous references for species information
  • Internet access

Applying the Idea

  • Grid paper
  • Plot of land
  • Measurement tools
  • Binoculars
  • Hand lenses

5. Needing Each Other

Students simulate the food web with an activity that uses cards and string. They will make connections between a food chain and a food web to examine relationship of prey/predator. Other connections to real situations are also possible. For instance, students will observe what happens over time in the local habitat. They will use organisms in the module to set up a habitat in the classroom for evidence of food chains/food webs. They will make links to energy transfer during the Getting the Idea phases.

Students will conduct an investigation where the relationship between the carbon dioxide and oxygen cycle of plants and animals can be observed. They will examine factors that might disrupt the balance in the system and theorize about what could happen to each species involved. Aqua systems are a good way to determine these connections.

Needing Each Other

Objectives

On completing this learning cycle, the students will be able to:

  • Describe how balance between organisms and resources can be maintained in a given ecosystem
  • Trace how all living creatures acquire energy from the sun
  • Identify species that depend on oxygen and those that produce oxygen

Time

The following guidelines are based on a 50-minute class period:

  • Exploring I: 1 class period
  • Exploring II: 3 class periods
  • Applying the Idea: 1 class period
  • Assessment: 3 class periods

Equipment / Materials

The following equipment and materials will be needed to conduct this activity with a classroom of 28 students:

Exploring I

  • Local habitat for observation
  • Yarn or string
  • Index cards or paper to make labels for your class
  • Masking tape
  • Blank wall or chalkboard

Exploring II

  • 4 jars and lids large enough to hold approx. 200 ml of water each
  • BTB (bromothymol blue) solution
  • 4 drinking straws
  • De-chlorinated water
  • 1 water snail
  • 2 pieces of elodea
  • Light source
  • Aquarium or container for snail and elodea

Applying the Idea

  • Aquarium
  • De-chlorinated water
  • Aeration system
  • Snails, elodea, Daphnia, algae from previous experiments
  • Aquarium gravel
  • Light sources
  • Yeast if necessary for Daphnia

Technology

1. What Should We Do With All the Garbage?

Each day the average American family throws out about ten pounds of garbage. The question is, what happens to all the garbage?Most garbage is burned or buried - both having negative environmental effects. Incinerated garbage leaves behind polluted air. Buried garbage leaves behind leachate. Leachate is the liquid produced from the decomposition of waste in a landfill. It is commonly poisonous and can sometimes seep into groundwater drinking supplies.

Many of the products that we use daily use materials that are nonrenewable. What happens when nonrenewable materials are depleted? As world population continues to rise (over 7 billion now... possible 10 billion by 2050) raw material usage will continue to grow. A fine line exists between sustaining economic growth, maintaining a high standard of living, and saving the earth for future generations.

What Should We Do With All the Garbage?

Objectives

On completing this learning cycle, the students will be able to:

  • Identify and trace a product’s lifecycle - from inception to disposal
  • List several alternative routes for waste products to reenter as useful products

Time

The following guidelines are based on a 50-minute class period:

  • Exploring: 2 class periods
  • Applying the Idea: 2 class periods
  • Expanding the Idea: variable
  • Assessment: 2 class periods

Equipment / Materials

The following equipment and materials will be needed to conduct this activity with a classroom of 28 students:

Exploring

  • 7 2-liter bottles
  • 7 1-gallon milk jugs
  • 7 aluminum soda cans
  • 7 empty food cans
  • 70 pieces of used paper
  • 14 cardboard paper towel tubes
  • 7 complete newspaper editions
  • 7 cereal boxes
  • 7 old t-shirts
  • 7 sandwich baggies
  • 21 tree leaves
  • 7 worn out ball point pens
  • 7 single serving disposable containers
  • 7 pieces of poster board paper
  • 7 scissors and/or utility knives
  • 7 hot glue guns
  • Hot glue sticks
  • Markers
  • Internet or library resources

Applying the Idea

  • Various products that are headed into the waste stream

Assessment

  • 7 pieces of poster board paper
  • Markers
  • Misc. drawing utensils
  • Internet or library resources

2. Control Your Environment

Humans create technological systems. Technological systems are driven from human wants and needs. Technology is the human-made world that surrounds us. The core concepts (universals) of technology are systems, resources, requirements, optimizations, and trade-offs, processes, and controls. During this learning cycle, systems and controls will be emphasized. A system is comprised of a group of interrelated components working together to accomplish a goal.

Controls in a system often cause change. A control may be a mechanical device (for example, a switch) or a person. Quality control engineers ensure that products meet certain specifications and criteria. People also occupy inventory, process, and material resource control positions. Control devices manage the direction, speed, and quantity or a certain item in a system. Three main types of control devices are mechanical (linkages), electrical (switches), and fluid (valves in hydraulic and pneumatic systems). Students experience controls everyday. They switch off a light or turn on a faucet, and change gears on their bikes.

Hydroponics is the process of growing plants without soil. To successfully do this, we need to put certain controls in place to make the system work. In a sense, we are controlling the environment in which plants grow. In a hydroponics system plants and nutrients need:

  • A container to serve as a support system for the plants
  • A system to monitor and adjust the temperature
  • Sunlight
  • Oxygen for the roots
  • A system to provide nutrients to the plants

Hydroponic systems are commonly used to grow flowers, vegetables, and herbs. Hydroponic systems are usually classified into two different types of systems: aggregate cultures and water cultures. Typically soil contains the necessary nutrients and provides the support for the plants. Roots grow in the ground providing footing for the plant. In hydroponics, however, aggregates provide support, but not nutrients to the plant.

Common aggregates in hydroponic systems include sand, perlite, gravel, vermiculite, rockwool, peat moss, marbles, and small pieces of bricks, sawdust, hay, straw, and Styrofoam. In aggregate systems the roots are buried. In water culture methods, the roots hang in the nutrient solution. Some water culture systems use aggregates just near the top of the plant to assist in its support. Other methods of supplying support to plants include using stake, trellises, string, or wire. In this learning cycle, students will experiment with fluid controls and apply them to a basic hydroponic system.

Control Your Environment

Objectives

On completing this learning cycle, the students will be able to:

  • Describe the purpose of controls in systems
  • Design, build, and use a human-made ecosystem

Time

The following guidelines are based on a 50-minute class period:

  • Exploring: 2 class periods
  • Applying the Idea: 3 class periods
  • Expanding the Idea: variable
  • Assessment: 2 class periods

Equipment / Materials

The following equipment and materials will be needed to conduct this activity with a classroom of 28 students:

Exploring

  • 14 milk jugs
  • 14 2-liter soda bottles
  • 14 feet clear ¼” to 5/16” diameter tubing
  • 7 hot glue guns
  • Hot glue sticks
  • 7 stopwatches
  • 7 scissors
  • 7 hobby knives
  • 7 water beakers
  • 7 hose clamps to fit over the clear tubing
  • Styrofoam®
  • Steel coat hangers
  • String
  • Various aggregates

Applying the Idea

The following materials are suggested: The Applying the Idea is open-ended to allow you and your students the opportunity to design a hydroponic system utilizing materials that you have available. The following supplies are available at most hardware stores or home centers.

  • 7 2-liter soda bottles, milk jugs, or other containers that can be used to hold and supply the nutrient solution
  • 20 feet 3” PVC plumbing pipe
  • 7 90 degree 3” PVC fitting
  • 7 3” PVC plumbing caps
  • PVC primer and glue
  • Metal strapping (plumber’s strap)
  • Misc. screws
  • 28 round single serving pudding containers (at the time of printing this text, Swiss Miss® brand had round containers)
  • 7 hot glue guns
  • 14 feet clear tubing
  • 7 clamps
  • Drill
  • 2 ½” hole saw (or the diameter of the pudding containers directly under the top lip)
  • Crosscut saw or miter box saw
  • 2” x 4” x 8’ wood stud

Assessment

  • Drawing and drafting supplies

3. The Booming World, The Depleting Resources

In 2001, the world population growth rate (counting births and deaths) hovered around 1.2% - adding about 76,000,000 people to the earth in that year (that’s over 200,000 people per day). Why should we discuss population growth rate in the technology discipline? Because as population grows, so does resource usage. It simply takes more resources to sustain a larger population. It is projected that by the year 2050 there may be as many as 10 billion people on the planet. The advancement of technological devices will surely play a huge role in conserving non-renewable energy resources and for providing enough food for the population.

Some people might assert that on average developing countries are growing much faster than industrialized (developed) countries. For the most part this is true, but we must realize that a person living in an industrialized country consumes a considerable amount more energy than someone living in a developing country. For instance, the United States only has about 5% of the world’s population but consumes 25% of its resources. So if you think in terms of resources used, for each American born the resources used are equal to five citizens in developing countries.

The Booming World, The Depleting Resources

Objectives

On completing this learning cycle, the students will be able to:

  • Describe the global distribution of natural resources
  • Identify various ways that technology and its uses affect humans

Time

The following guidelines are based on a 50-minute class period:

  • Exploring: 3 class periods
  • Applying the Idea: 3 class periods
  • Expanding the Idea: variable
  • Assessment: 1 class period

Equipment / Materials

The following equipment and materials will be needed to conduct this activity with a classroom of 28 students:

Exploring

  • 8 energy bars
  • Poster board

Applying the Idea

  • Video recorder
  • Web publishing software
  • Presentation software (e.g., PowerPoint®) or other presentation type equipment and materials

Assessment

This learning cycle does not have a separate assessment. A rubric is provided to assess the Applying the Idea activity.

4. Alternate Ways

Non-renewable energy resources are those, which in all practical terms, cannot be replaced when gone. Fossil fuels (i.e., coal, oil, and natural gas) are non-renewable energy resources.

Less than 10% of the energy used in the United States comes from renewable energy resources. Solar power, wind power, water power, geothermal, ocean thermal energy conversion, and biomass will play a large role in supplying our energy needs in the future. Using renewable energy resources has less environmental impact than using non-renewable fossils fuels. Using energy that is already here, like solar and wind energy, allows countries to be more energy independent, supplying their own energy needs. In the future, supplies of fossil fuels will become depleted. The instability in fossil fuel producing countries is unpredictable causing great concern for relying heavily on them as our main energy source.

During this learning cycle, students will learn about various renewable energy resources. Students will experiment with photovoltaic cells, windmills, and waterwheels.

Alternative Ways

Objectives

On completing this learning cycle, the students will be able to:

  • Identify renewable energy resources
  • Describe the characteristics of series and parallel circuits
  • Illustrate how energy can be converted from one form to another
  • Describe the type of direct energy conversion devices that can be made to minimize negative social, cultural, and environmental impacts in our world

Time

The following guidelines are based on a 50-minute class period:

  • Exploring: 3 class periods
  • Applying the Idea: 3 class periods
  • Expanding the Idea: variable
  • Assessment: 2 class periods

Equipment / Materials

The following equipment and materials will be needed to conduct this activity with a classroom of 28 students:

Exploring

  • 14 photovoltaic cells
  • 7 multimeters
  • Various materials to build windmills which may include pop cans, soda bottles, paper cups, hot glue, hot glue guns, tape, cardboard, scissors, string, craft sticks, clay, paper, construction paper

Applying the Idea

  • 1 meter section of rain guttering
  • Several 2-liter bottles
  • 1 garbage can or plastic tub
  • 50 pennies
  • Various materials to build waterwheels- which may include pop cans, soda bottles, paper cups, hot glue, hot glue guns, tape, cardboard, scissors, string, craft sticks, clay, paper, construction paper
  • 7 metal coat hangers
  • Single serving size pudding containers

Assessment

  • Video camera
  • 7 videotapes

5. Driving On Empty

This learning cycle emphasizes using human power to do work. All too often society attempts to develop highly technological devices to complete simple tasks. Sometimes we jump into an automobile just to go a couple of city blocks! Every time we do this we use a large amount of resources. Bicycles are simple machines that students are familiar with; they will understand that in order to operate a bicycle they must use human power. We can conserve resources by using bicycles for some short trips rather than cars. In fact, in many parts of the world the bicycle is used as a main source of transportation. This is even true in some highly developed countries.

In previous learning cycles, ecological sensitivity was discussed. Resources are being used at a faster pace than they can be replenished. This learning cycle explores the idea that simple technology powered by humans may be better than complex technology powered by non–renewable resources. Technology-enhanced inventions can be small and provide solutions using local resources to solve local problems.

Driving on Empty

Objectives

On completing this learning cycle, the students will be able to:

  • Define appropriate technology
  • Design a device utilizing appropriate technology

Time

The following guidelines are based on a 50-minute class period:

  • Exploring: 2 class periods
  • Applying the Idea: 2 class periods
  • Assessment: 1 class period

Equipment / Materials

The following equipment and materials will be needed to conduct this activity with a classroom of 28 students:

Exploring

  • 7 bicycles
  • 7 meter sticks
  • 7 stopwatches

Applying the Idea

  • Drafting paper
  • Simple drafting tools (triangles, templates, straight edges, pencils, etc.)

Assessment

  • The Applying the Idea is used as the assessment in this learning cycle. 

Readings

Making Connections

Landfills
The Value of Ecosystems
Rice, Rice, Everywhere There's Rice
Wildlife Management
Ditching the Dinosaur - Recycling Electronic Equipment
Driving on French Fries

Assessment

Assessment of the content in each learning cycle varies. In some cases, specific tasks are assigned or problems are presented. In others, a rubric is used to assess work completed in the Applying the Idea section. Each module has an “End of Module Assessment” that addresses the Module Objective and key concepts.

2016-07-13T05:14:17.06-05:00 2016