AN ENVIRONMENTAL QUEST

 

By: Jody Frey and Shelly Spangler

Introduction | Task | Process | Resources | Evaluation | Conclusion

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Introduction:

Your plane has just arrived at the airport. As you look up ahead, you notice a sign: "WELCOME TO PULOOTSVILLE AIRPORT." While walking to the luggage claim area you reflect on your summer-long trip to Europe and although it was quite an experience, you're glad to be back in your hometown. It was a great chance to visit your grandmother while touring the pristine countryside. You grab your bags and head for the door. As you step outside, you immediately notice that something is just not right. Your eyes begin to water and you experience a burning sensation in your throat. Your dad pulls up to the curb and you throw your bags in the trunk. Through your tears, you describe your wonderful trip. The stories continue as you approach the local landfill site. You notice the sign that says: "LANDFILL CLOSED." As you get closer to home, you notice the old swimming hole is also closed. You think to yourself, "WHAT IS GOING ON??" Your community is in dire need of your environmental expertise! The land is polluted, the air is difficult to breathe, and the water is contaminated. All areas of your community are being affected by these detrimental conditions. It is your mission to research the causes and possible solutions to these problems so that future generations can reap the benefits of a healthy environment and prevent similar problems from arising. As a member of a research team, you will analyze the present conditions and provide possible causes and solutions.

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Task:

As an environmentally educated member of the community, it is your responsibility, along with your team of experts, to research possible causes and solutions of land, air, and water pollution. Include in your research and findings the effects each type of pollution has on people and their "natural" habits, animals, and business economics.

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The Process:

You will be taking on a role as part of a team of environmental experts. This team consists of you and two other classmates. The roles are terrain environmentalist, atmospheric engineer, and hydrologist. Each member of the team must research the causes of the pollution under the conditions that exist. You will be given a variety of resources including Internet sites, Internet search tools, and non-Internet materials. The community is counting on your team to provide causes and possible solutions of the pollution problems. Each team member must arrive at three causes and solutions to lessen or eliminate the pollution. You will be given resources from which to find your information. Once each member has finished the individual tasks, it will then be the responsibility of the team to collaborate and create a final summary. This summary will be presented as an oral presentation supplemented by Hyperstudio or PowerPoint to the town council.

The Roles: Each member of your team must take on a role. The roles and areas of study are as follows:

THE ROLES

AREA OF STUDY

Terrain Environmentalist

Land pollution

Atmospheric Engineer

Air pollution

Hydrologist

Water pollution

 

After you have chosen your particular role but before you actually take on the role, your team must look at the following three sites together. These sites should give you an introduction and some great ideas to complete your tasks.

General Procedures:

      1. After you have read these procedures, then click on your selected role below.
      2. At this point you should be at the instructions/resource page for your role.
      3. Follow the given directions and use the hyperlink resources to research your particular type of pollution.
      4. You will find a data sheet linked to your resource page. Print and use this sheet to record your data.
      5. When each person in your team has completed the individual research, you must collaborate on your findings.
      6. The end result of your collaborative efforts will be a presentation to the town council, your classmates in Hyperstudio or PowerPoint.

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Resources:

Terrain Environmentalist

Atmospheric Engineer

Hydrologist

 

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Evaluation:

Individually, each member of your team will receive a single grade for this webquest. Your grade will be based on the criteria of a rubric. The elements of the rubric are: teamwork, content, and presentation. This rubric is available for your use as a guideline.

 

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Conclusion:

After completing this project, hopefully you have learned more about pollution and its effects on the various aspects of life. Through the Internet and your library, you have researched a type of pollution and your team has collaborated to analyze the information. Your efforts have led you to propose possible solutions to pollution problems in Pulootsville. Hopefully, your group realized there are ties among land, water, and air pollutions. Now that you have obtained this information, you can put it to good use in your own community.

As an extension of this webquest you could incorporate the findings of your research into your community. Investigate the sources of pollution within your community. Talk to town council members, your parents, and neighbors, and local/state environmental experts to discuss how your community can be improved.

Remember, the best solution to any problem is to get yourself and others involved!

 

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