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In this guided inquiry, students explore the relationship between coronavirus and climate change. Four lessons guide students in a thorough and introspective investigation of the relationship between COVID-19 and the climate crisis with the goal of moving students from anxiety to understanding and empowerment. The design allows students to conduct this inquiry in the classroom or at home. Each lesson is delivered as a power point that guides students through the inquiry with questions, activities and links to video and other sources of information.
Lesson One: Students complete a number of activities supported by video and current case studies to learn where corona viruses like COVID-19 come from and why they can spread so quickly. Topics covered include the nature of viruses, epidemics vs pandemics, immunity, vaccination and the ‘new normal’. Students will consider complex issues related to the current pandemic including food markets, our treatment of animals and globalization.
Lesson Two: Through readings (provided) and reflection activities, students explore the effects of global warming, including its impact on the spread of disease. They consider why we are not responding to the climate crisis with the same urgency as the pandemic and reflect on their feelings of concern, possible anxiety or even fear regarding COVID-19. Topics covered include global warming, climate action, viral spillover, epidemiology and mindfulness.
Lesson Three: Through readings, short videos, case studies and reflection activities, students investigate the profound social inequalities and injustices COVID 19 and Climate Change have revealed and why those most heavily impacted by environmental injustice are more likely to victims of the pandemic. Topics include social justice, climate justice, globalization, quality of life and empathy.
Lesson Four: Through readings, videos, case studies and reflection activities students consider what we have learned from the pandemic that can bring about a healthier future for people and the planet. This includes examining their own communities for examples and inspiration and committing to personal action. Topics covered include the Gaia hypothesis, regeneration, interconnectedness, systems thinking, responsibility and action.
The resource does not teach skills
The resource will be of greatest interest to teachers of Science (Environmental Science, Biology) Social Studies (Geography, World Issues, Social Justice) and Health (Disease, Epidemiology). It is especially well-designed and suited for 'at-home learning'.
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||Good|
The student inquiry is supported by resources that reflect different points of view. Other than the premise that climate change contributes to the spread of COVID and other viral diseases there is no bias towards any one point of view.
|Consideration of Alternative Perspectives: |
|Multiple Dimensions of Problems & Solutions||Very Good|
The interplay of environment and society provides the context for the inquiry. Systems thinking is explicitly taught and practiced.
|Multiple Dimensions of Problems & Solutions: |
Effectively addresses the environmental, economic and social dimensions of the issue(s) being explored.
|Respects Complexity||Very Good|
The questions guiding the student investigations and reflections are designed to illustrate the complexity of the issues discussed.
|Respects Complexity: |
The complexity of the problems/issues being discussed is respected.
|Acting on Learning||Satisfactory|
Students identify personal actions they can take to address local and global problems raised in their inquiry. While they are encouraged to implement action, it is not a requirement.
|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
|Values Education||Very Good|
Students are provided with specific opportunities to reflect and express their attitudes, understanding and feelings about issues raised in each of the four lessons.
|Values Education: |
Students are explicitly provided with opportunities to identify, clarify and express their own beliefs/values.
|Empathy & Respect for Humans||Very Good|
Through their investigations of the pandemic and the climate crisis, students will learn that empathy and support for each other are more important than ever, especially for those living countries and communities most impacted by both.
|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|
Students will come to understand the interconnections that characterize all species and appreciate that keeping our planet healthy is the only way to secure our own future.
|Personal Affinity with Earth: |
Encourages a personal affinity with -the natural world.
In the reflection exercises students are asked to identify local examples and circumstances related to different themes of the inquiry.
|Locally-Focused Learning: |
Includes learning experiences that take advantage of issues/elements within the local community.
|Past, Present & Future||Very Good|
The resource does a good job in presenting a timeline for both the climate crisis and current pandemic. While much of the investigation focuses on the current situation, the goal of empowering students with the understanding and optimism to respond to these challenges is achieved.
|Past, Present & Future: Promotes an understanding of the past, a sense of the present, and a positive vision for the future.|
The lessons are designed to illustrate that these are very complex issues for which there are no easy or single solutions.
Lessons are structured so that multiple/complex answers are possible; students are not steered toward one 'right' answer.
The resource features content from the sciences and social studies.
|Integrated Learning: |
Learning brings together content and skills from more than one subject area
The resource provides for a guided inquiry.
|Inquiry Learning: |
Learning is directed by questions, problems, or challenges that students work to address.
While lessons feature different types of activities, some learners will struggle with the emphasis on reading and responding.
|Differentiated Instruction: |
Activities address a range of student learning styles, abilities and readiness.
|Experiential Learning||Poor/Not considered|
Although the content and experiences described are playing out in real time, there is little offered in the way of hands-on learning or direct experience.
|Experiential Learning: |
Authentic learning experiences are provided
|Cooperative Learning||Poor/Not considered|
The resource is designed to have students working independently.
|Cooperative Learning: |
Group and cooperative learning strategies are a priority.
|Assessment & Evaluation||Poor/Not considered|
While the lessons and activities provide opportunities for assessment, tools and direction 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.|
|Peer Teaching||Poor/Not considered|
The resource is designed to have students working independently.
|Peer Teaching: |
Provides opportunities for students to actively present their knowledge and skills to peers and/or act as teachers and mentors.
|Case Studies||Very Good|
Current and engaging case studies are a featured prominently to support students in their inquiry.
|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|
This is definitely a guided inquiry.
|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.|