Nature-based solutions have the potential to bring numerous benefits to a range of sustainability challenges facing cities. While contributing to economic activities and social well-being, they can help limit the effects of climate change, increase biodiversity and improve environmental quality.
For this purpose, we wanted to involve our students in green solutions at an early age. Thus, they will be familiar with the issue of green space spread and will be able to contribute to building a sustainable, healthy, and resilient city that is better adapted to climate change.
School: Konya Ereğli Science and Art Center, Turkey Participants: 8 years old – 20 students Application: 04 – 15 April 2021 Subject Science, Art, BT, English Subject: Green spaces and urban transformation
Integration into the curriculum:
To have compassionate and respectful attitudes towards the natural and social environment.
Observing important moments in the life of plants.
texts with visual support.
Interacting with a partner (to ask and tell).
Copying and writing words and simple sentences.
Develop a comprehensive vocabulary repertoire within context.
The new situation caused by the COVID-19 pandemic has brought big changes in the teaching in the virtual classroom compared to the usual teaching. Online teaching has set new requirements for the rapid implementation of ICT and the integration of digital technology without time to learn about the possibilities and principles of using a particular web tool. The question of choice, approach and way of working arises. Teachers quickly set out to select the appropriate technology for teaching activities and certain groups of students while achieving the planned educational outcomes and expectations of cross-curricular topics.
Time to contribute in solving global problems
As part of the school course Socially Responsible Business, students of the 2nd grade of the profession economist with their teacher Nada Ratković, prof. mentor participated in many national, European and international projects solving global problems the world’s most important challenges: climate change. Through the school year students are participating in national projects „E-student for a greener tomorrow“, EU project „Students actions-Fighting climate changes“, eTwinning project „Breathe deeply & Think clearly“, international projects „Climate Action project“ and „SDG goal project“. The projects are significant because they can be presented for any general education and vocational subject. Every age, topic and school requires a different approach and gives students the future they deserve.
We live in an ever-changing world. How can we prepare our students for such a rapidly changing world? What should we teach our students today to help them live? What skills will they need? The answer to these questions is unknown, as no one knows what the world will do in the future.
In this activity, students were asked to think about the future and find solutions that would better protect the environment.
How can we reduce pollution levels (atmospheric, water, ocean)? What can we do to have more green spaces? They thought about how they could save energy to help air quality and ecosystems.
Subject (s) STEM topics:
Aims of the lesson
Raise awareness of threats to our environment
Develop environmentally friendly behavior
Developing skills and habits that help keep the world beautiful and clean
Learn through creative design, creation, inquiry and exploration processes
Improve communication skills and collaborative learning
How can we help planet Earth, the future of our environment. Finding the answer to the question
21st century skills
This course will develop the following skills identified as the 21st century among students. Skills:
Critical thinking: Students will be asked to reflect on everyday issues. Provide solutions for each problem given during the discussion
Problem-solving: Students will identify problems affecting the environment. And they will offer a solution.
Information literacy: Students will learn about the climate It will help them create ideas and answers to real-life questions.
Life and career skills
Initiative: Students will take initiative to help their communities Social skills: Students will develop positive attitudes, how to interact with them and They will learn to value each other’s opinions. Creativity: Students will develop their creative thinking skills by getting information. They will create problem solutions from the analysis and criticism of a problem. Communication: Students will engage in constructive dialogue and listen to each one. Additionally, through the Art course, They will have the opportunity to produce materials for visual communication. Collaboration: Students in the classroom will collaborate with each other to solve problems. Productivity and accountability: Students will plan and manage time to do everything. Responsibility: Students will be asked to propose feasible and realistic solutions.
In this activity, we tried to find answers to the following questions.
What is the environment? What kind of environment is it healthy to live in? Is the technology we have today making our lives better and emerging or harmful? What are renewable energy sources and how can they be used? Are there solutions for how the world can be a better place, and what are some mistakes we need to fix to make our environment better, healthier?
Brainstorming and discussion began on the above sentence. And the subject of the script was introduced to the students. Environmental awareness
Discussion; What kind of environment is required for a healthy life? Who and what pollutes our planet? technology Does it heal or hurt our lives today? What renewable energy sources and how can we use them? What solutions are there to make the world a better place and What are some bugs we need to fix for this to happen? It was shaped by questions.
Students’ homework: 30 years from now, they have been asked to think about what their country will be like in the future.Pollution, environment, climate change, energy, education. Each student wrote an article summarizing their own thoughts and views and explaining how these issues will have an impact on the future of the environment they live in. And they needed to think about potential solutions to how the Earth could be a better place and what some of the wrongs we need to correct. They wrote a class book from these articles. “What the future holds – our stories. Here it is.
We have a white handkerchief, what will happen if we step on it? Or if we put the handkerchief on the car’s tailpipe? The lesson started with these questions. As a result of the discussion, the students decided that the handkerchief would be dirty. Then;
How does a dirty environment affect our health?
Who should be responsible for the environment? Discussions were held on questions.
After the discussion; A video was watched on how to take care of the environment. Here is the video
After watching the video, students received a self-assessment to see how much they care about the environment.
After talking with the students about the environment and nature, students made a poster with their eco-messages. Posters with solutions on how to save the future of the world and people in general. The students gave the following messages on their posters;
Turn off power tools when not in use.
Replace plastic bags with linen
Separate waste and dispose of in containers provided
Choose hygiene products labeled as natural ingredients.
This activity started by watching a video about renewable energy and energy sources.
After watching the video, we talked about energy and fuel. Energy types, renewable, non-renewable energy sources, where does the energy come from, types of fuels and the best for the environment, and why fossil fuels generated by the greenhouse. The students expressed their views on these issues.
Later, the students were divided into groups. Each group chose a renewable energy source.
Group1: Solar energy
Group2: Water energy
Group3: Wind energy
The groups explored the type of energy they were interested in. The research was about a brief description of the energy type, advantages, and disadvantages. They then posted their research results on a collaborative digital board “note.ly/” and presented them to their friends. We thought of the table not only as a reference for students but also as a common valuation method.
The students worked in pairs and wrote suggestions on how to reduce energy on their post-it notes. Then they placed them on the digital board. And then Energy action plan prepared: 10 easy ways to save energy (Annex 2)
The students were given the task of building a windmill. Also Creating a short video explaining wind power.
Before the students came to the class, they learned the amount of money paid by their parents (electricity bills for the last 3 months). Then they determined the electrical appliances they used at home, their condition, and the amount of electricity they consumed in the last 3 months. Using this information, they created 2 tables.
In Table 1, they wrote which electrical appliances they used, how often they used them, and the amount of electricity they consumed in the last 3 months. In Table 2, they made a 1-year energy estimate. They guessed what tools they could use and removed unnecessary tools. By comparing with Table 1, they analyzed how much their electricity consumption decreased when they removed the unnecessary devices from the list and came to a conclusion and took note of the results.
Students were shown pictures of very crowded cities and non-urban places with significant industrial activities. The students argued over the question of how high the danger was. They saw that we can also destroy the environment outside the city.
Then the students were asked to draw 2 pictures. In the first picture, they drew what would happen in 30 years if we were not sensitive to the environment. In the second picture, if we are environmentally conscious, what can happen if we make an energy plan. The students then added the pictures they made to padlet.com and displayed them to their friends.
Students made the presentation and final pictures of the windmill with the online zoom tool. The evaluation was done using an online questionnaire. For this, the Kahoot tool was used. Kahoot is here.
Formative assessment in the first, third and fourth lessons, all learning outcomes, surveys, and quizzes to gather information was obtained.
The activities supported the development of students’ systematic problem solving, critical thinking, and analysis skills. They thought about daily matters, discussed, and came up with solutions. They have learned to value each other’s opinions by developing a positive attitude. Information and technology improved literacy.
They acquired creative thinking skills. Through art class, they had the opportunity to produce materials for visual communication. In cooperation, they produced rational solutions to problems.
Students became aware of threats to our environment and they developed environmentally friendly behavior. They have acquired skills and habits that will help keep the world beautiful and clean.
Schools switched to distance education due to the epidemic. For this reason, the events took place over the internet. The learning scenario has been adapted to distance education. It has been supported by some online tools. Generally, students and parents gave positive feedback on this diverse, informative approach and They supported the participation of students in STEM subjects.
As part of the 2021 STEM Discovery Campaign, events were held using six resources in the Scientix Resource Repository. The events were held between 15 February – 24 March 2021 at Konya Ereğli Science and Art Center with 30 students between the ages of 8-10. As all over the world, schools in Turkey have switched to distance education after February 2020 as part of the fight against the covid19 pandemic. On March 8, 2021, face-to-face training started. That’s why we’ve done some of our activities remotely and some of them face-to-face. Distance education activities were carried out through the TEAMS account defined by our school for teachers and students. Our face-to-face activities were held in our classroom.
In this event, a multidisciplinary approach was used to introduce STEM concepts and competencies in different subject areas at the same time, including mathematics, measurement, power, mechanics, numbers, creativity, transfer of comprehension.
A doll figure was used in the resource. Instead, it was stated that we could use any figure. We used the Whirling Dervish figure for this.