Resources for Focus on Risk Activity 1 – What Is Risk?

We encounter many types of risks every day. What is meant by the term risk? What types of risks do we encounter daily? Are all risks equally likely to occur? Are they all harmful? Why are we willing to take some risks but not others? Is anything really 100 percent risk free? In this activity, students will work together to explore these and other questions as they discuss, develop, and refine their definition and concept of risk and of risk assessment.

This is one of 11 activities that can be found in PLT’s Exploring Environmental Issues: Focus on Risk. To get the activity, attend a training and receive PLT’s Focus on Risk secondary module. Below are some supporting resources for this activity. 


Download the copyright-free student pages that are included with this activity:

Group Responsibilities (PDF)


The following tools and resources may be used to enhance the activity.

  • Animals at Risk from Climate Change Poster

    This poster captures the complex interaction of biological traits and environmental conditions that cause a species to be susceptible to climate change. Thoroughly documented to studies from reliable sources, including the IUCN Climate Change Specialist Group, NASA, NOAA, the US EPA, and the IPCC, the poster features 25 animals that highlight the fundamental impacts of greenhouse gases—causes, effects and risk of extinction—on all forms of life on the planet.

  • Death by Design Documentary

    Consumers love – and live on – their smartphones, tablets and laptops. However, even the tiniest devices have deadly environmental and health costs. From the electronics factories in China, to the high-tech innovation labs of Silicon Valley, Death by Design tells a story of the fast-approaching tipping point between consumerism and sustainability.

  • RadTown USA

    EPA’s Radiation Protection Program has launched the RadTown USA website, created to allow middle and high school students to explore radiation- where it is found and how it is used- in four different environments. The website also has Common Core supported content, including the history of radiation protection, ways to reduce exposure risk, careers in radiation protection, and the benefits of radiation.