Wednesday, November 06, 2019

Environmental Science Shortlist

Our team is engaged in an interdisciplinary environmental science program. Last Friday we looked deeply at the program and came up with a content shortlist:
  • What is a watershed, and how does a watershed work?
  • Why is clean water important, and what are some ways we can filter water to make sure it is clean?
  • How do organisms interact in the ecosystem; what evidence of this interdependence exists in the ecosystem?
  • What is the role of sun and plants in the ecosystem? How is energy transferred in the ecosystem?
  • What is the SUASCO watershed? Where is it and what bodies of water make up the SUASCO watershed?
  • What is climate change?
    How does climate change affect the watershed?
  • What can humans do to protect the watershed?
This shortlist is based on state standards, systemwide STEAM projects, and our systemwide science program.

We've already started teaching these standards in a variety of ways including hands-on investigations, videos, reading, lab reports, discussions, and more. Today we'll explore the role of the sun in the ecosystem with shared reading, discussion, video, the creation of solar ovens, cooking s'mores, and completing lab sheets. Of course, this is a popular project thanks to making the ovens and cooking s'mores, a favorite snack.

Next steps for the project include discussion and learning about climate change, and a nature hike that reviews our study of the watershed, water cycle, and the need for clean water, interdependence in the ecosystem, and what we can do to become good stewards of our natural environment.

Led by our naturalist coach from Massachusetts' Audubon's Drumlin Farm, students will decide on one way that they will promote knowledge about and stewardship for the environment. We'll likely have an environmental fair to showcase those projects.

There's much to do as we continue to grow and deepen this project. Onward.