By examining the historical attitudes of American Indians and American pioneers toward the environment and natural resources, students can reflect on their own lifestyles, and identify trade-offs between simple subsistence and the modern technology-based living.
This is one of 96 activities that can be found in PLT’s PreK-8 Environmental Education Activity Guide. To get the activity, attend a training either in person or online and receive PLT’s PreK-8 Guide. Below are some supporting resources for this activity.
Engage students in real-world applications of STEM (science, technology, engineering, math) education.
Try these STEM Connections for this PLT activity:
Expand your students’ learning and imaginations. Help students meet their reading goals while building upon concepts learned in this activity with the following children’s book recommendations:
Every month we carefully select new tools and resources that enhance PLT’s lessons. These include educational apps, videos, posters, interactive websites, careers information, and teacher-generated materials. Browse a chronological listing below:
Climate Challenge Board Game
Games4Sustainability can help you incorporate a sustainability-themed game in your activities to improve our understanding of important global issues today. Narrow your search from among 100+ games and simulations by filtering the games by the UN Sustainable Development Goals or use the advanced search for more options. Challenges include topics of food, climate, security and public health. For example, in the Climate Challenge, players face the crucial trade-off between long term sustainability and short-term economic growth. Provide your students with a unique challenge to problem solve and practice decision making.
Our Relationship with Energy
Energy makes everything we do possible. In this TEDxMileHighWomen event, energy journalist Joran Wifs-Brock talks about Our Relationship with Energy, or as she explains, the broken relationship. Use this presentation with high school students to help them consider the ways we use energy in our own life and the communication breakdown between flipping a switch and the resources we use lighting our homes.
The Garden of Wisdom: Earth Tales From the Middle East
This first-hand account of nature and environmental issues in the middle east is great for ages 7 and up. Written by award-winning author Michael Caduto and illustrated by Odelia Liphshiz, The Garden of Wisdom: Earth Tales From the Middle East brings together traditional stories about earth, stewardship, and protecting endangered species. Gathered from oral tradition, stories range from themes of Animal, Plants, Friendship, Stewardship, and Wisdom. The book offers sections for parents and teachers to draw connections to lessons from each story and dig deeper into the sources. ISBN: 978-0-9727518-5-8.
Learn about wilderness history, the values and benefits of wilderness, and threats to wilderness at this website. This interagency repository of information about the more than 750 Bureau of Land Management, Fish and Wildlife Service, Forest Service, and National Park Service wilderness areas contains K-12 classroom resources. At the website, you will find webquests, quizzes, and links to wilderness programs, along with blogs, legislation, agency policies, scientific literature, and research.
Teaching the Food System
Resources from The Johns Hopkins Center for a Livable Future introduces students to food-system topics and issues. Explore questions such as: What are the strengths and weaknesses of local food systems? How is our food supply dependent on ecosystems? Find slides, handouts, and other supplemental materials on their Teaching the Food System website.
Plant for the Planet Video
Inspired by Wangari Maathai, 9-year-old Felix Finkbeiner founded “Plant for the Planet” and has planted more than 500,000 trees in Germany which he says will help sequester carbon and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Watch Felix’s video, part of the Young Voices on Climate Change series, to learn about his efforts to plant trees for a healthier world.
Energy Quest is an effort by the California Energy Commission to provide resources to teachers and students all about energy: its different forms, how it is generated, its sources and how to protect and conserve it. The Energy Quest website is arranged in easy-to-use tabs that lead to a rich, comprehensive supply of teaching material. The website’s interactive interface is useful and educational to both teachers and students alike.
Learn Sign Language
Learn sign language by using a free app that can be downloaded on Apple or Android devices. This app introduces users to the world of communication by sign language. You learn from video clips, choosing from a wide variety of topic areas, including weather, colors, animals, shapes, feelings, family words, and more. Other free language apps are also available (Spanish, French, Italian, German, etc.)