My Environment, My Sustainable Solutions
Understanding Life Systems
In these inquiry activities, students will first experience a local ecosystem to practice observations and generate their own questions which may become a focus of inquiry.
Students will then be challenged to design and build a model ecosystem using a variety of tools and materials. Recording qualitative and quantitative data will be used to assess the viability of their ecosystem and propose changes to the design.
Students will also propose and act on a local environmental, sustainability, or protection initiative. They will research an environmental problem, propose solutions, contact an organization with similar goals, and put their own plan in action.
Shaping Structures for Sustainability
Understanding Structures and Mechanisms
In this inquiry activity, students will explore structures around their environment and pose questions related to form and function. They will use the technological problem-solving process to design and build a workable structure to investigate form and function concepts. They will relate their findings to established scientific facts and produce a scaled model of a structure, or the structure itself.
Mix it up! Split it up! Drink it up!
Understanding Matter and Energy
Students first get introduced to the concepts of pure substances and mixtures, and the particle theory by doing a photo-hunt for matter in their home and exploring the world of particles through images from electron microscopes. Then students design their own experiments following the scientific method to answer questions about the properties of matter. Scaffolding can be used to encourage gradual release of responsibility for choices of materials and methods. In a second activity, students are required to design and build a water purifying system using basic materials to separate the various “pollutants”, with a focus on disposal of the “refuse” of the experiment in an eco-sensitive manner.
Exploring Green Houses
Understanding Earth and Space Systems
In this design project, students generate scientifically relevant questions concerning efficient buildings, heat transfer, and the conservation of heat. Students will obtain evidence that supports or refutes their response by experimentation, and provide explanations for what they observe. They will conduct inquiry by designing and building a structure to test their hypotheses. They will link the results to accepted facts about heat and temperature, and communicate their results in an acceptable format.