RUTHERFORD PUBLIC SCHOOLS ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE CURRICULUM GRADE 7

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1 RUTHERFORD PUBLIC SCHOOLS ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE CURRICULUM GRADE 7 I. INTRODUCTION The overall intent for the environmental studies course is to expose seventh grade students to a multitude of environmental topics in order to help raise their awareness of local and global issues. Through a multi-disciplinary approach, students will be asked to examine problems and share ideas in order to collaborate on ways to better secure the future of the planet. Students will actively participate in projects and that foster decisionmaking skills and encourage self-action and personal responsibility to take positive proactive measures to improve the quality of the environment. II. OBJECTIVES A. SKILLS The student will be able to: 1. Evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of data, claims, and arguments. 2. Communicate experimental findings to others. 3. Recognize that the results of scientific investigations are seldom exactly the same and that replication is often necessary. 4. Recognize that curiosity, skepticism, open-mindedness, and honesty are attributes of scientists. 5. Identify questions and make predictions that can be addressed by conducting investigations. 6. Design, conduct and interpret investigations incorporating the use of a control. 7. Collect, organize, and interpret the data that result from experiments. 8. Demonstrate understanding of the proper use of laboratory equipment. 9. Know when and how to use appropriate safety equipment with all classroom materials. 10.Understand and practice safety procedures for conducting science investigations. B. CONTENT The student will be able to: 1. List and describe issues that impact the environment on both a local and global level.

2 2. Identify the abiotic and biotic factors that are part of the environment and assess how changes in both will affect different ecological areas. 3. Discuss, describe and detail different environmental issues within different biomes. 4. Discuss and describe different water environments and be able to detail the ecological impact of pollution on different water habitats. 5. Describe the importance and value of biodiversity and list ways in order to protect biodiversity from human that threaten it. 6. List and describe reasons why animals are becoming endangered and list and describe methods to decrease the rate of endangerment. 7. Investigate the impact of catastrophic events such as earthquakes, floods, and hurricanes on the environment. 8. Discuss, describe and detail the impact of environmental issues on the overall health of humans. 9. Develop interesting, useful and practical solutions to current worldwide environmental concerns. III. PROFICIENCY LEVELS Environmental Studies is a cycle course appropriate for all grade 7 students. IV. METHODS OF ASSESSMENT: A. Formal 1. Teacher-prepared quizzes 2. Student reports and presentations B. Informal 1. Class participation 2. Group work 3. Role-playing 4. Display work V. GROUPING Environmental Studies is a heterogeneously grouped course at the seventh grade level.

3 VI. ARTICULATION/SCOPE AND SEQUENCE/TIME FRAME This course will be offered for approximately a nine-week period. There are no prerequisites for this course. VII. RESOURCES Scientific journals, newspaper articles, videos, documentaries, as well as any other available resources from environmental and non-environmental agencies are used throughout the course. VIII. METHODOLOGIES 1. Students will be exposed to a multitude of including board work, critical readings, research, individual projects and oral presentations. 2. Throughout the course, students will be required to make displays that are representative of different environmental issues. 3. Technology Standards: A.1, A.2, E.1, B.2, C.4, D.2, D.4 IX. SUGGESTED ACTIVITIES 1. List and describe environmental issues that have both local and global impact. 2. Investigate and discuss the correlation between pollution and human disease. 3. Discuss and propose solutions to manage the world s growing solid waste problem. 4. Research major sources of pollutants and make inferences on the ecological impact of pollution on aquatic plants and animals. X. INTERDISCIPLINARY CONNECTIONS Connections can be made to world language, social studies, and art. (9.1.8.A.2, A.3) XI. DIFFERENTIATING INSTRUCTION FOR STUDENTS WITH SPECIAL NEEDS: STUDENTS WITH DISABILITIES, ENGLISH LANGUAGE LEARNERS, AND GIFTED & TALENTED STUDENTS Differentiating instruction is a flexible process that includes the planning and design of instruction, how that instruction is delivered, and how student progress is measured. Teachers recognize that students can learn in multiple ways as they celebrate students

4 prior knowledge. By providing appropriately challenging learning, teachers can maximize success for all students. Examples of Strategies and Practices that Support: Students with Disabilities Use of visual and multi-sensory formats Use of assisted technology Use of prompts Modification of content and student products Testing accommodations Authentic assessments Gifted & Talented Students Adjusting the pace of lessons Curriculum compacting Inquiry-based instruction Independent study Higher-order thinking skills Interest-based content Student-driven Real-world problems and scenarios English Language Learners Pre-teaching of vocabulary and concepts Visual learning, including graphic organizers Use of cognates to increase comprehension Teacher modeling Pairing students with beginning English language skills with students who have more advanced English language skills Scaffolding word walls sentence frames think-pair-share cooperative learning groups teacher think-alouds XII. PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT Teachers shall continue to improve their expertise by participating in a variety of professional development opportunities made available by the Board of Education and other organizations.

5 XIII. CURRICULUM MAP WEEK TOPIC ACTIVITIES 1 Environmental issues, solid waste management and recycling issues Folder Activity Recycling slogans 2 Environmental issues, solid waste management and recycling issues Dilemma Cards Recycled planters 3 Biomes and ecology issues Woodland Habitat 4 Biomes and ecology issues Biome construction 5 Water and water pollution issues 6 Water and water pollution issues Abyssal zone creatures Deformed from mystery Bookmark Activity 7 Endangered animals Endangered animals pamphlet 8 Natural disasters and their environmental impact 9 Diseases and the environment Earthquake and tectonic plates activity Cartoon sketch Related articles Revised 2015

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