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Curricula for Global Sustainability Education

Ignite your students' learning and inspire them to take action in their communities with our hands-on, standards-aligned global sustainability curricula!

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Water, Science, and Civics: Engaging Students with Puget Sound, Grades 6-8 - Lesson Plan PDF
Water, Science, and Civics: Engaging Students with Puget Sound, Grades 6-8 - Lesson Plan PDF

Teacher Lesson Plan PDF | Free
This free series of five lessons leads your students through an exploration of the significance of Puget Sound and the impact humans have on this valuable resource. Students creatively use technology throughout the unit and the culminating lesson is an action project in which students create a digital public service announcement to educate others about the significance of the Sound and ways to address pollution. 

            



 

Free Downloads & Table of Contents

This download (a $14.95 value) is available for free thanks to generous contributions from the following funders: The Russell Family Foundation and ERM Foundation. Thank you! Your support will empower thousands of students in all types of schools and communities to build a more sustainable future.

Water, Science, and Civics: Engaging Students with Puget Sound (complete unit)

Download the entire unit for FREE.


 
Table of Contents and Introduction

Preview the introduction, overview, and table of contents.


 

Lesson 1: A Sound Introduction

Through an interactive slideshow activity, students are challenged to determine connections among various images of Puget Sound. Students distinguish different types of ecosystems in the region. In a mapping activity, students learn about physical features of the region while identifying their own location within the region.

You will also need to download the accompanying PowerPoint.
  


Lesson 2: Ecosystem Services and Sustainability

Students discover the importance of ecosystem services in the Puget Sound region. Working in small groups, students critically analyze how various ecosystem services support environmental, social, or economic systems in the Sound.
  


Lesson 3: Pollution in My Backyard? No Way!

Students learn to distinguish between point and nonpoint source pollutants while they learn about real pollutants in Puget Sound. Through a demonstration exercise, students understand how stormwater runoff can carry nonpoint source pollution to Puget Sound. Students then determine how this pollution could be prevented.

You will also need to download the accompanying Stormwater Diagram.
 


Lesson 4: Town Hall Meeting

Students take on perspectives of different stakeholders to explore how to decrease the amount of pollution in Puget Sound. Stakeholder groups are encouraged to form alliances in order to reach consensus on the plan that will be the best for the entire community.
  


Lesson 5: Make a Sound Impact!

Students develop strategies to prevent pollution and improve water quality in Puget Sound and create digital public service announcements (PSAs) that inform others of how they can be part of solutions.
  

Resource Details

Why Use Water, Science, and Civics?

Imagine a classroom where students are mastering social studies and science content as they:

  • create digital public service announcements that educate the local community about how to decrease water pollution
  • propose solutions at town hall meetings to keep Puget Sound healthy

Water, Science, and Civics engages students in these types of lessons. Not only do students master standards, but they also develop 21st century skills such as critical thinking, collaboration with peers, digital literacy, and problem solving. They become thoughtful leaders who participate in problem-solving activities similar to ones they will encounter as active citizens in the future.

Recent research suggests that student engagement can help support student achievement now and in the future. Students who are engaged are more likely to excel in the classroom. 1 Learning core content that helps them make real world connections can highly motivate students.

Washington State Standards Addressed
  • Science Grade Level Expectations (GLEs)
  • Social Studies Grade Level Expectations (GLEs)
  • Technology Grade Level Expectations (GLEs)
  • Language Arts Grade Level Expectations (GLEs)
  • Environmental and Sustainability Education standards

Key Concepts
  • Ecosystem services
  • Media literacy
  • Point and nonpoint source pollution
  • Stormwater runoff
  • Sustainability
  • Sustainable development
  • Watershed

 

How to Use Water, Science, and Civics

Water, Science, and Civics: Engaging Students with Puget Sound is a one-week unit comprised of a series of five interdisciplinary lessons. Though the lessons are designed as a comprehensive unit, each lesson can also stand alone. The lessons were pilot tested and reviewed by Washington educators, and all are aligned to science, social studies, and sustainability standards. Included in each lesson are ideas for discussion questions, background readings, and additional resources. All lessons are SMARTBoard compatible and have a number of integrated technology components including Google Maps and PowerPoint.

Water, Science, and Civics will lead your students through an exploration of the significance of Puget Sound. Students will learn specifically about the services the Sound provides for humans economically, socially, and environmentally. They will engage in activities that range from understanding the scientific impacts of human behavior on the Sound to activities that allow them to consider the many points of view involved in Puget Sound pollution prevention. The culminating lesson is an action project in which students create solutions to pollution in their local community.

Teaching your students about local and global issues that impact their lives can help them to create effective solutions. Water, Science, and Civics will help you do just that in a uniquely engaging way as students learn core social studies and science skills.

Compatible subject areas:
  • Science
  • Social Studies
  • Technology
  • Language Arts

State Standards

Educator Quotes

 Facing the Future’s new Puget Sound focused lesson plans are engaging, meaningful and fully aligned with state standards in multiple content areas. As a marine focused educator, I see daily how disconnected many young people are from this amazing place that we live. This curriculum can have a major impact on the Puget Sound Region and help create a new generation of educated, committed and engaged Puget Sound citizens. I am hopeful it will be integrated into schools throughout the region. 

- Susie Richards, Co-Executive Director of Service, Education, & Adventure (SEA)

 

 These lessons are an active complement to lessons about the ecology of the Puget Sound and allow students to engage in their local environment through multiple means. 

- Matthew John Brewer, Science Teacher, Eckstein Middle School

 

 ...Facing the Future has put together lessons on Puget Sound pollution in Notebook for SMARTboard files, that are interesting and engaging, and that would take very little prep time to integrate into your projects. 

- Troy Hilton, Educational Technology Program Manager, TAF

 

 [This resource is] a good introduction to the Puget Sound Region and how it supports the communities around it. 

- Kristin Moore, Science Teacher, Explorer West

Professional Development

Facing the Future offers the following professional development opportunities to help you learn more about Water, Science, and Civics: Engaging Students with Puget Sound:

Water, Science, and Civics Webinar

Engage students with Puget Sound and 21st century skills. Using hands-on lessons, digital storytelling, and service learning, middle and high school students will be empowered to take action to strengthen the Sound’s ecosystems. Through interdisciplinary lessons, students investigate watersheds and stormwater pollution, explore local geography, and develop civic engagement.

Speakers

To learn more about our webinars, please visit our Webinar page. If you are interested in scheduling a webinar email or call us at 206-264-1503.



Water, Science, and Civics Workshops

Engage students with Puget Sound and 21st century skills. Using hands-on lessons, digital storytelling, and service learning, middle and high school students will be empowered to take action to strengthen the Sound’s ecosystems. Through interdisciplinary lessons, students investigate watersheds and stormwater pollution, explore local geography, and develop civic engagement.

Participants will take part in lessons that include:
  • Technology-integrated components including interactive whiteboards, data analysis, and video storytelling,
  • Resources to engage multiple learning styles (e.g., role-plays and interactive maps),
  • Local service learning links for action projects,
  • Correlations to Washington State science, social studies, and environmental and sustainability education standards,
  • A digital video contest students can participate in between July and December, through which they can voice their opinions around how to keep Puget Sound healthy,
  • Resources for learning about sources of stormwater pollution,
  • Information on controlling and treating point and nonpoint pollution,
  • Opportunities to explore interconnections between stakeholder needs and mitigation planning, and
  • Connections to 21st century skills including collaboration, systems thinking, critical thinking, and taking multiple perspectives.


Additional Professional Development Opportunities

 

To learn more about our upcoming workshops, webinars, and conferences, please visit our Workshop Calendar. If you are interested in having Facing the Future present at your next event, please contact us.

Supplementary Materials

To complement Water, Science, and Civics, this section contains background information and additional resources to help educators and students learn more about global issues and sustainability.

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Nonprofit Facing the Future is an international leader whose mission is to create tools for educators that equip and motivate students to develop critical thinking skills, build global awareness and engage in positive solutions for a sustainable future.
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