A look at six everyday things:
Do they damage the environment?
What can WE do about it?
- Warm-up (quick 'whole-class' questions about 6 everyday items)
- Using existing knowledge (groups predict how harmful each item is);
- Reading on the Web - challenging - (individual learners research items - extracting general information);
- Reporting back (learners compare their findings with the predictions they made).
Do you use...? - warm-up
- Put these six words on the board: (the 6 items from Everyday things & the environment)
- Ask learners who uses them; how much they use them, etc.
Are they harmful? - using existing knowledge
- Learners work in groups (6 is ideal) to consider:
- how harmful each item is to the environment (if at all);
- what kind of damage or problems it causes.
- Secretaries record the group's ideas for each item.
Getting the facts - reading on the Web
- Each group member researches one of the 6 items: (access from 'Trash' contents page)
They make brief notes about:
- the environmental impact of
- the raw materials & manufacturing process;
- recommended action
Note: This will be a challenging reading task for some learners, as there is unfamiliar vocabulary and some content may also be unfamiliar. Learners do not need to know all the vocabulary (e.g. the names of all the chemicals) or all the details of the content (e.g. each step in a process); they need to make generalisations, pick out the most important information, and give some examples.
Suggestion: Learners who are researching the same item work together before reporting back to their separate groups.
What we found out - reporting back
- Learners report to the group and compare their findings with their predictions;
- Which findings are most surprising to them?
- Is there anything they would add or disagree with?
What can we do? - action options
- Get more information:
- Check out Tips for less trash
- Add learners own ideas
- Each learner says one important way that they could make their lifestyle more environmentally friendly - and gives a realistic estimate of the chances that they will actually do it; Or learners explain why they feel no need to try to change their lifestyle;
- Progress reports (oral or written) can be made after a week or so.
© Chris Doye 1999
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Last Modified: 18th July 1999