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Programs > Environmental Programs > Environmental Education ToolKit
Grade 7 Environmental Education ToolKit
Standard 6.0 Environmental Science

Students will use scientific skills and processes to explain the interactions of environmental factors (living and non-living) and analyze their impact from a local to a global perspective.


A. Natural Resources and Human Needs


1. Recognize and explain the impact of a changing human population on the use of natural resources and on environmental quality.


1. Use data to identify and describe the positive and negative impacts of an increasing human population on the use of natural resources. 

2. Recognize and describe the decreasing dependence on local resources due to the impact of available transportation.

B. Environmental Issues


1. Recognize and describe that environmental changes can have local, regional, and global consequences.


1. Identify and describe a local, regional, or global environmental issue.

2. Identify and describe that different individuals or groups are affected by an issue in different ways.


 Maryland Home Grown Lunch Week - Coming Fall, 2008!

The Eat Local Challenge
(transportation impact)

Free lesson downloads from Population Connection (Click here)
Titles and descriptions of some lessons. These are not live links. Free registration on the website.

Population Basics
Food For Thought
A simulation where students populate "continents" drawn to
         scale in yarn on the classroom floor and discuss how people and resources are
        distributed worldwide

Ø Power of the Pyramids-Students construct and interpret "population pyramid"
        graphs for several countries.
Ø World Population Video - This seven minute film depicts the history of human
         population growth and distribution from 1 AD through the present, then projects
         future growth to the year 2030.

These activities explore how human numbers and actions affect the availability of natural resources on Earth and the quality of our environment.

Ø Earth- Apple of our Eye A demonstration of worldwide land distribution -- the instructor slices an apple to represent land used for farming.
Ø EcoEthics
In groups, students explore and discuss their personal code of environmental ethics by discussing eco-dilemmas.
Ø Population and resources -Activities about how population changes and resource use affect human well-being.
Ø Population Dynamics-These activities address population growth patterns, demographics, and forecasting.

 Facing the Future Lessons
40 Free lesson downloads on human population and environmental impact.
Requires free registration.  The links below are not active. register through the FTF main site.

Examples of lessons: These links are not live. Free registration on the Facing the Future site.
6. Is It Sustainable? - Students define and discuss sustainability and its 3 key components: the economy, the environment, and society

9. How Big is a Billion? - A short demonstration of what 1 billion looks like, using increasing amounts of rice to represent the world’s population. Students then create their own representations of 1 billion.

10. Splash But Don’t Crash - Students see the effect of population growth rates on the Earth’s carrying capacity through an exercise in which they move water from a container representing births and deaths into another container representing the Earth.

12. Watch Where You Step! - Students identify the components of an Ecological Footprint by creating a web diagram of all the resources they use in their everyday lives and the mark or “footprint” this consumption leaves on the environment.

18. Biodiversity Connections - Students simulate biodiversity within an ecosystem by assuming the identities of resident plant and animal species in a forest stream ecosystem.

19. Toil for Oil - In this oil extraction simulation, students experience the increasing difficulty of extracting a limited, nonrenewable resource over several years.

20. Fishing for the Future
- Students model several consecutive seasons of a fishery and explore how technology, population growth, and sustainable practices impact fish catch and fisheries management.

30. Shop Till You Drop?
In this simulation, students experience how resources are distributed and used by different people based on access to wealth.

31. Let Them Eat Cake!
Through cutting and distributing pieces of cake, students see the inequitable distribution of resources around the world.


Ø World Bank Lessons on Sustainability

Ø World Wildlife Federation Activities and Information

Ø  I Buy Different

Ø My Community, Our Earth- Geographic Learning for Sustainable Development -
investigation ideas and materials

Ø National Geographic Environment -daily news topics and resources

Ø  NOAA's Virtual World  is a 3-D online world. Create and build everything from
    homes, vehicles, stores, and landscapes to educational areas

ØUnited Nations Cities of Tomorrow - Learn about cities around the world
   and construct your own ideal city.

Ø  BSI Education Lessons on Sustainability

ØGlobal Envision - 8 lessons on impact of climate change on humans, reefs,
    air, animals more...

ØProject Learning Tree - student teams develop and present a vision for the
   future of an area in their community
Maryland Agriculture Profile

ØSustainable Table- lessons and web resources
ØEat Fresh, Buy Local- food and transportation information, lessons and resources

Ø Other websites

Suggested Maryland Green School Activities

Green School 

                        Focus: Food Choices

                             The 100 Mile Diet- Eat Local Campaign

                         - Background: Becoming A Maryland Green School
                                                - Native Plant Nurseries in the Chesapeake Bay Area 
                                                - General Information for Maryland
                        - Funding for Bay- related projects
                        - Funding for Schoolyard Habitats

Interdisciplinary Connections

Life Science
Indicator 3E1. Explain that the transfer and transformation of matter and energy links organisms to one another and to their physical setting.
Genetics: DNA for Dinner?

Social Studies-  Political Science; Geography; Economics
Identify an issue related to the area(s) of the world studied in social studies class.
Mountain Gorilla Project - Teacher training workshop to be held  at MD Zoo. If interested, email rbell@msde.state.md.us

Math Connections

Illuminations Web Site: The Next Billion

Contact Information
Maryland State Department of Education
200 West Baltimore Street
Baltimore, MD 21201
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