Earthducation is primarily focused upon documenting and encouraging people around the world to participate in an ongoing conversation about the intersections (or disconnections) between education and sustainability. Given this focus, there are many ways in which educators and learners can explore, participate in, and extend the ideas presented on the Earthducation website.
These educational activities are intended to help educators and learners:
- complement the online expedition
- explore the links between education and sustainability
- encourage participation in the EnviroNetwork
From Your Home to South America
This activity invites students to explore a South American country of their choice in comparison to their home continent so that they may better understand, and perhaps appreciate, each country’s unique cultural and physical geographies.
What Is Sustainability?
This activity introduces students (and teachers) to the concept of sustainability so that they may better understand its many meanings, including what this big word means to them personally.
Share Your Voice!
This activity invites students (and teachers) to listen to what others have to say and to share their own opinion about the role that education and sustainability play in their lives.
The team will provide updates that will be posted on the Earthducation website during their travels to the field location.These updates will include text, photos, videos, and audio files. These updates are intended to showcase the local interviews being conducted in the focal region as well as to inspire conversation on the Environetwork well after the team arrives home.
Additional Lessons & Activities
Featured Resource! We’d like to especially recommend the lessons, classroom activities, and other educational resources at National Geographic Education. There, you will find many activities that tie directly to the Earthducation project, including the Human Footprint Education collection, where you and your students can explore how the choices we make impact our world, or the Sustainability collection that investigates a variety of issues tied to sustaining our natural world.
Take the Ecological Footprint Quiz to figure out “how much nature your lifestyle requires.” The free quiz consists of 27 questions and is available in English, Chinese, Russian, French and Spanish.
Changing Planet offers a nice online video set on climate change indicators with accompanying lessons for secondary school teachers.
Discovering the Arctic is an education resource for schools developed by the Royal Geographical Society with IBG and others. It’s targeted at 14 to 16 year olds but is suitable for other age groups with some adaptation.
A Role Play about Climate Change for Secondary and High School Students For this project, students role-play international climate change debates, taking on the role of representatives from various countries and organizations and negotiating a new climate agreement. There are several learning modules, a teacher’s guide, and other supplementary materials and info (such as suggested negotiation questions, facts and worksheets for each country or organization, etc.). There are even poll results showing how participating classes have voted on various issues. The website is in Norwegian but the Google Translate tools can interpret it well enough that English-speaking teachers can follow along with the lesson plans.
Energy Kids has a well-organized collection of lesson plans, plus a virtual field trips area that includes a visit to an offshore oil rig and a hydropower plant.
The EcoTipping Points Project provides models for success in dealing with issues of climate change and sustainability around the world. The site includes a teacher resources area, a list of website resources dealing with sustainability, and environmental success stories.
A Student’s Guide to Global Climate Change includes a “Take a Climate Change Expedition” area comprised of short explanatory videos about climate change issues in various locations around the world, along with climate-change-related activities and information for students.
Kids’ Crossing: Living in the Greenhouse focuses on climate, the greenhouse effect and greenhouse gasses, climate history, events, and news.
Classroom Earth offers a virtual library with websites, videos, and sample lesson and unit plans designed to help high school teachers incorporate environmental education into their daily curriculum.
Climate Classroom Kids includes a “Climate Card Activity Guide for Educators” series developed by the National Wildlife Federation (NWF) to provide fourth through sixth grade students with age-appropriate information, tools, and resources to better understand climate change and its impact on wildlife and their habitat. Designed to be used with the Climate Cards featured on the site. All content reflects the Guidelines for K-12 Global Climate Change Education proposed by NWF and the North American Association for Environmental Education.
Green Education Foundation (based in Australia) offers for-purchase sustainability curriculum packs for secondary students. Also peruse its K12 Sustainability Lesson Clearinghouse that contains free lessons and is searchable by grade level and content area.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) provides a variety of lesson plans, background information, resource links, tutorials, archived professional development seminars, media galleries, and interactive tools that can be used with grades 5-12.
The National Science Teachers Association (NSTA) provides a wide variety of lesson plans related to life science, earth and space science, and physical science. Lessons can be filtered by subject and/or grade level.
Creative Change has a variety of lessons on climate change, ecological footprints, energy, sustainability, and more, but it requires a paid subscription to access the materials.
Climate4Classrooms is a UK-based site with a clear step-by-step intro to climate change, as well as lessons and activities for classroom use.
Green Education Foundation (based in Australia) offers for-purchase curriculum packs that consist of 10-15 sustainability lessons for secondary students. Also contains a Clearinghouse of free lessons that is searchable by grade level.
The National Environmental Education Foundation has a variety of curricula specific to K-12 that is related to the environment, sustainability, energy, climate change, etc.
TVA Kids has activities, information, and resources related to a variety of energy production topics and includes a teacher resource area.
Energy Resources has info about all different types of energy resources, and includes worksheets and online quizzes.
The U.S. Energy Information Administration has a great site called “Energy Explained: Your Guide to Understanding Energy” that discusses both renewable and nonrenewable forms of energy, along with energy in general, units and calculators, etc. They also maintain the Energy Kids website.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has a resource area for teachers, including lesson plans on air, climate change, conservation, ecosystems, human health, local issues, stewardship, waste and recycling, and water. The site also includes links to other websites with teacher resources and lesson plans.
The U.S. Department of Energy has a site just for kids with games, tips, and facts related to saving energy. It includes a link to lesson plans for K-12 teachers.
The National Wildlife Federation EcoSchools Program “provides a framework to help educators integrate sustainable principles throughout their schools and curriculum. It was identified by the United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) as a model initiative for Education for Sustainable Development in 2003.”
This Home Energy Savings for Kids page was suggested to us by Danielle from Texas, and offers some nice tips on saving energy and money at home. Thanks, Danielle!