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Students conduct 3 activities that explore agricultural inputs and outputs in an effort to better understand some of the challenges involved in producing enough food to meet a growing human population while protecting the environment. General descriptions of two additional ‘cross curricular’ activities have been included to encourage students to connect with schools in other jurisdictions.
Activity 1. Students conduct their own research to determine the types of crops and livestock raised in their region as well as the various farming methods used. In doing so, students will also explore the role of “inputs” and “limiting factors” (climate, altitude, water) in determining agricultural outputs in food production. They can share and compare their findings with students from other parts of the world by connecting with the publisher’s facebook page, Schools Online.
Activity 2. Students conduct an experiment to demonstrate the effect of soil salinity on seed germination to better understand the impact of arid climates and irrigation on productivity. The activity also provides students with insight into hypothesis testing and controlling variables in an experimental setting.
Activity 3. In this experiential activity, students build floating gardens to test their effectiveness as a solution to growing food in landscapes prone to flooding made more frequent due to climate change.
Students are provided with a list of materials and instructions required to carry out the experimental procedures in activities 2 and 3. The resource also includes background information to provide an overview of the problem of food security, the challenges it presents, and some possible solutions.
Conducting a controlled experiment.
This resource would prove appropriate in helping students participate in World Food Day. It has application in those courses that include outcomes addressing food security, world hunger, climate change, interactions in ecosystems, agriculture and population growth.
The following tool will allow you to explore the relevant curriculum matches for this resource. To start, select a province listed below.
|Consideration of Alternative Perspectives||Very Good|
Students conduct their own research and investigations to answer questions and establish a context for further discussion of food security.
|Consideration of Alternative Perspectives: |
|Multiple Dimensions of Problems & Solutions||Satisfactory|
While the background information provided to introduce this resource and its activities effectively describes the issue of food security in the multidimensional framework of sustainable development, the activities themselves are focused on very specific aspects of growing food. Connecting student findings to the broader discussion of food security will require support not included in the activities themselves.
|Multiple Dimensions of Problems & Solutions: |
Effectively addresses the environmental, economic and social dimensions of the issue(s) being explored.
The complexity of the challenges relating to food security with a growing human population is effectively presented in the background to the student activities. Teachers will need to include or incorporate this information in the discussion following completion of the activities.
|Respects Complexity: |
The complexity of the problems/issues being discussed is respected.
|Acting on Learning||Poor/Not considered|
This criterion is not addressed.
|Acting on Learning: |
Learning moves from understanding issues to working towards positive change — in personal lifestyle, in school, in the community, or for the planet
This is not a strength of this resource.
|Values Education: |
Students are explicitly provided with opportunities to identify, clarify and express their own beliefs/values.
|Empathy & Respect for Humans||Satisfactory|
Opportunities exist for students to discuss the plight of those individuals living in regions of the world without food security. Teachers will need to highlight and act on these opportunities.
|Empathy & Respect for Humans: Empathy and respect are fostered for diverse groups of humans (including different genders, ethnic groups, sexual preferences, etc.).|
|Personal Affinity with Earth||Good|
The activities and suggested extensions do a good job in connecting students to the natural world through the lens of agriculture and producing enough food to feed a growing population.
|Personal Affinity with Earth: |
Encourages a personal affinity with -the natural world.
All three of the core learning activities address relevant issues. Suggested activities extend the learning into the community.
|Locally-Focused Learning: |
Includes learning experiences that take advantage of issues/elements within the local community.
|Past, Present & Future||Good|
Again, it is the background information to the student activities that presents the chronology of events significant in the past, present and future challenges relating to food security.
|Past, Present & Future: Promotes an understanding of the past, a sense of the present, and a positive vision for the future.|
|Open-Ended Instruction||Very Good|
Students conduct their own research and investigations. They are not steered in any particular direction.
Lessons are structured so that multiple/complex answers are possible; students are not steered toward one 'right' answer.
The resource offers opportunities to address outcomes in science, geography, social studies and health.
|Integrated Learning: |
Learning brings together content and skills from more than one subject area
The 3 core activities involve students in guided inquiry.
|Inquiry Learning: |
Learning is directed by questions, problems, or challenges that students work to address.
Students carry out research, hypothesis testing, hands-on activities, as well as oral, written and on-line communication.
|Differentiated Instruction: |
Activities address a range of student learning styles, abilities and readiness.
The core activities are experiential and relevant to the lives of the students. Suggested activities take the learning into the community.
|Experiential Learning: |
Authentic learning experiences are provided
The activities are structured to accommodate cooperative learning. Students are encouraged as well to work cooperatively with students from other parts of the world.
|Cooperative Learning: |
Group and cooperative learning strategies are a priority.
|Assessment & Evaluation||Poor/Not considered|
Assessment tools or suggestions are not included.
|Assessment & Evaluation: Tools are provided that help students and teachers to capture formative and summative information about students' learning and performance. These tools may include reflection questions, checklists, rubrics, etc.|
The activities encourage students to share their findings with classmates and other young people around the world through social media.
|Peer Teaching: |
Provides opportunities for students to actively present their knowledge and skills to peers and/or act as teachers and mentors.
|Case Studies||Poor/Not considered|
|Case Studies: |
Relevant case studies are included. Case studies are thorough descriptions of real events from real situations that students use to explore concepts in an authentic context.
|Locus of Control||Satisfactory|
Some general areas and ideas for extension are included but are not well supported.
|Locus of Control: Meaningful opportunities are provided for students to choose elements of program content, the medium in which they wish to work, and/or to go deeper into a chosen issue.|