Green Teacher 91, Winter 2010-2011
From Footprints to Thoughtprints by Stephen K. Goobie
While most environmental teaching focuses on actions required to solve environmental problems, it does little to challenge the underlying attitudes and assumptions which led to these problems in the first place. Stephen K. Goobie encourages educators to tackle not only our ecological footprints, but also our ecological “thoughtprints”.
Going Out by Joyce Nett
Incorporating simple nature walks into elementary class schedules can provide a number of benefits for children, including increased interest in learning and attention span. The author draws inspiration from Montessori principles and offers practical tips for successfully introducing such walks into the curriculum.
Creating Poetry with an Environmental Theme by Bert Murphy
A class activity for grades 4-6 in which students learn about basic elements of poetry, such as rhyme and meter. After reading several poems, the class creates an environmental poem by having each student write a line of the poem anonymously. Doing so allows students to overcome apprehension of peer judgment of their work.
Climate Change Treasure Hunt by Chris Summerville
An engaging, awareness-raising activity for grades 4-10 in which students learn about the positive and negative impacts on climate change of various things and places on school campuses and at nature centres and other sites. Young people are given the opportunity to think of ways of using or doing these things differently to reduce their environmental impact.
Step Outside For Learning by Pamela Gibson, with Bryan Bibby & Janice Haines
A description of how an elementary school made student-led outdoor learning part of their everyday curriculum, and how this has benefited student learning, collaboration between staff and students in different grades, overall morale in the school, and community collaborations.
Dig, Measure and Observe by Natalie Stern
Independent work stations develop science skills during guided reading group instruction in the primary grades.
A Plastic Bottle Greenhouse by Vanya Orr and Mohan Kumar
A middle school in rural India removes water bottle litter from a local forest picnic site, and uses the discarded bottles to construct a greenhouse. Saplings are grown in the greenhouse to help regenerate the same forest from which the plastic bottles came.
Learn from My Mistakes by Brad Daniel
A “dialectical” approach for training educators on how to teach more effectively in outdoor settings. The trainer models a poorly taught lesson, works with the students to identify the mistakes made, and provides solutions for correcting those mistakes. Aims to help highlight some of the common mistakes that outdoor educators make, such as those related to group position, delivery, content, pace, and professionalism.
From Newcomer to Environmental Citizen by Galina Vakhromova
Demonstrates one method of incorporating environmental ethics into an English-as-a-second-language classroom, using the teachings of Albert Schweitzer as a vehicle.
Transformation is in Our Hands by Lisa Lipsett
A creative process for deepening teachers’ and students’ connection to nature through drawing, painting, and dialogue, called “Creative Nature Connection”. This process emphasizes the importance of observing both nature outside of ourselves and our inner feelings in creating nature artwork.
Participatory Eco-Drama by Dalia Levy
Unconventional dramatic forms that foster critical thinking and environmental learning in children 7 and up. Allows children to unpack environmental frustrations and to foster creative local solutions. Participants learn how to use alternative modes of decision-making that promote equal participation and respect.
Educational Resources Reviewed
The Human-Powered Home: Choosing Muscles Over Motors (Tamara Dean)
The Atlas of Water: Mapping the World’s Most Critical Resource (Maggie Black and Jannet King)
Granted! A Teacher’s Guide to Writing & Winning Classroom Grants (Chris Taylor)
Earth Worm Disco CD (Shira Kline)
The Climate Challenge: 101 Solutions to Global Warming (Guy Dauncey)
Try This at Home: Planet-friendly Projects for Kids (OWL Magazine)
World Ocean Census: A Global Survey of Marine Life (Darlene Trew Crist, Gail Scowcroft, and James M. Harding)
Seasons of Peace (Carolyn Pogue)
Earth Under Fire: How Global Warming is Changing the Earth (Gary Braasch)
Peak Oil –The End of the Industrial Era poster (The Community Solution)
Healthy Neighborhoods/Healthy Kids Guide (Shelburne Farms)
Growing Greener Schools DVD (Media & Policy Center Foundation)
The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate (Jacqueline Kelly)
The Shore Tour: Living Responsibly on the Edge of the Ocean activity kit (LaMotte company)
Oxford Dictionary of Environment and Conservation (Chris Park)
Cyclist BikeList: The Book for Every Rider (Laura Robinson)
Where Fires Dance (Alison Clark and Eric Howe)
Forces of Nature DVD (Earth Island Institute)
Get Out! 150 Easy Ways for Kids and Grown-Ups to Get Into Nature and Build a Greener Future (Judy Molland)
An Environmental Guide from A to Z (Tim Magner and Aubri Vincent)
Ella: A Baby Elephant’s Story (Ron Berry) and Leo: A Baby Lion’s Story (Kathleen Duey and Lara Gurin)
Engineering the City: How Infrastructure Works, Projects and Principles for Beginners (Matthys Levy and Richard Panchyk)
Climate Change from Pole to Pole: Biology Investigations (Juanita Constible, Luke Sandro, and Richard E., Jr. Lee)
Western Soundscapes Archive website (University of Utah Institute of Museum and Library Services)