More Earth Day Resources

Whether you seek ideas for a community service project for Earth Day or ways to use innovative technologies to bring the environment into your classroom, TeachersFIrst has the reviewed resources to meet your needs. This extensive list is a full listing of TeachersFirst resource for Earth Day.

List too long? Explore our "Editors' Choice" resources for Earth Day, selected for their potential to engage and involve your students in both the understanding of scientific concepts surrounding Earth Day and in environmental activism for any time of the year.

You can also narrow your search to a specific topic for earth day or a certain grade range using our keyword search tool in the left column of this page.

 

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Virtual Visit to a School Garden - TeachersFirst/Meriwether Lewis Elementary

Grades
3 to 8
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Watch the archived version of a live webcast from Meriwether Lewis Elementary School garden on Earth Day 2009, a cooperative project with TeachersFirst. See students explain concepts...more
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Watch the archived version of a live webcast from Meriwether Lewis Elementary School garden on Earth Day 2009, a cooperative project with TeachersFirst. See students explain concepts of organic vegetable gardening, natural building with cob, composting, rainwater collection, planting their new bioswale, Pacific Northwest native plants, and more. TeachersFirst's complete how-to information for making your own video field trips is linked from this page, as well.

tag(s): earth day (112), environment (317)

In the Classroom

Scroll down to a list of suggestions for using this archived webcast in your classroom. Talk about local sites where you might be able to take a team of students to create a local student created "video field trip" to share with other classes both in and outside of your school. See TeachersFirst's complete how-to information to try one of your own.

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Biomes of the World - TeachersFirst

Grades
4 to 8
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Introduce the earth's different biomes with this unit, created by TeachersFirst. Biomes include coniferous forest, deciduous forest, tropical rainforest, tundra, ocean, fresh...more
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Introduce the earth's different biomes with this unit, created by TeachersFirst. Biomes include coniferous forest, deciduous forest, tropical rainforest, tundra, ocean, fresh water, desert, and the savannah. Each link includes information and pictures. Students can complete an on-line research project on a biome of their choice, using selected web resources, or they can learn the basics of biomes with the information provided in the unit. There are links to the introduction, to learn more about the project, and even a teachers link (with a TON of class activity ideas).

tag(s): biomes (116), earth (228), earth day (112), ecosystems (88)

In the Classroom

Have students work in cooperative learning groups to explore this site. Challenge students to create multimedia presentations about the biomes. How about a Powerpoint? Or have students narrate a photo of the biome using a site such as Thinglink, reviewed here. Other options include creating a wiki, blog, or video.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Welcome to the Planets - GLS

Grades
2 to 12
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Enjoy NASA's images of planets and spacecraft used in space exploration. This site is a great reference site for concise information about planets, and spacecraft. An online glossary...more
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Enjoy NASA's images of planets and spacecraft used in space exploration. This site is a great reference site for concise information about planets, and spacecraft. An online glossary contains space terms, and the origins of names for planets, moons, or spacecraft that are from Greek mythology, Latin, or famous people. Spacecraft information includes the assembly, lift off, and mission information. Spacecraft information comes in an audio format too. A CD is offered for sale from the National Space Science Data Center.

tag(s): earth (228), planets (122), solar system (118), space (206)

In the Classroom

In science, this site easily lends itself to planetary studies. Science classes can compare mass, density, atmospheric components, and surface materials. Math classes can use information provided for many real life math applications comparing distances, revolutions, temperatures, distance from the sun, mass, and diameter. Practice place value and estimation in a universal way. An extra challenge for gifted students can easily lend itself to mean, median, and mode as well as graphing possibilities. Consider Earth day activities to focus on the uniqueness of our planet and the qualities of our planet to maintain life as we know it. Include as a reference on your web site, or as an informational piece to web quests in math or science. Challenge students to create multimedia presentation highlighting one of the planets or spacecrafts. Have students narrate an image using a site such as Thinglink, reviewed here. For quicker projects, create electronic "posters" or word graphics for adopted word using tools such as Piclits, (reviewed here,) or Typogenerator, (reviewed here).

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eGFI Magazine Online - American Society for Engineering Education

Grades
K to 12
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eGFI Online Magazine is a great nonfiction reading in science and math. It is completely portable as it is online. It can be shared to your Delicious or Diigo site ...more
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eGFI Online Magazine is a great nonfiction reading in science and math. It is completely portable as it is online. It can be shared to your Delicious or Diigo site or other social networking sites. Use this site to enhance cross curricular teaching and learning of reading and interpreting nonfiction text. Plus, this is current and exciting stuff to read for students who are even vaguely interested in science. There are also video links throughout the magazine connecting the text to different, relevant videos. There are lesson plans and activities for grades K-5, 6-8, and 9-12. Some of the recent entries (at the time of this review) included the topics of velocity, Earth Day, robots, sports physics,

tag(s): engineering (118), tornadoes (16), watersheds (16)

In the Classroom

Share the link to this magazine with your students via your delicious or diigo links that can be posted on your wiki or website. Then have students sign up for an article to read on their own time using your wiki as a sign up location. Then have students share what they have read in class discussion or on an online discussion board or blog post. Challenge students to create a multimedia presentation to share their topic. Have your students create an interactive online poster ("glog") using Glogster EDU, reviewed here.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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National Environmental Education Week - National Environmental Education Foundation

Grades
4 to 12
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Join Environmental Education Week which is held the week before Earth Day. Get involved in Education Week programs by registering your school and classrooms. Find curricula, webinars,...more
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Join Environmental Education Week which is held the week before Earth Day. Get involved in Education Week programs by registering your school and classrooms. Find curricula, webinars, and resources under the "Resources" tab. Click on the resource list on the left for Educational materials including a Curricular Library, Green Reading, Nature Center Maps, Quizzes, and more. Be sure to subscribe to their monthly newsletter. Lesson plans and other activities can be downloaded.

tag(s): earth (228), earth day (112), ecology (135), environment (317), resources (111), water (130)

In the Classroom

Use this resource to plan great activities, lessons, and events for students leading up to Earth Day. For example, search through the Water resources to find great curricula for different age groups and be sure to use resources such as the "Water-Energy connection" to tie various resources together for better understanding of how resources and our use of them are interconnected. Use the articles and reports to pique student interest, use short videos in the classroom, and find great websites and programs linked from the page. Find lesson plans and fact sheets that can be downloaded and used. Use these resources not only for greater understanding of issues but to create awareness campaigns for change in the home, school, or community. Create posters of information learned, partner with local groups (conservation or not) to create action plans and events, and provide opportunities for change in the community. Have your students create an interactive online poster ("glog") using Glogster EDU, reviewed here.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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SMART Lesson Collection - Scholastic

Grades
K to 12
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This is a collection of ready to go, SMART Notebook activities from Scholastic. This collection covers all grade levels with activities in many areas. At the time of this review ...more
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This is a collection of ready to go, SMART Notebook activities from Scholastic. This collection covers all grade levels with activities in many areas. At the time of this review topics included: "Back to School: August 2008 Lesson Activities," "Math and Science Lesson Activities," "Earth Day Lesson Activities," "Famous People Lesson Activities," "Phonics Lesson Activities," "SMART Lesson Activities," and "SMART Senteo Question Sets." Please note that all of these activities require SMART Notebook software (which comes with SMART brand IWBs). If you don't have SMART Notebook you can download the SMART interactive viewer which can be found on the site.

tag(s): iwb (31)

In the Classroom

These lessons are great for the new SMART Board user or the seasoned pro. Use these if you need a lesson but don't have time to create one from scratch. View the lessons and use them as ideas to help you create your own lesson.
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Earth Milestones since First Earth Day - MSNBC

Grades
4 to 12
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Despite scary environmental news, what have we done to make progress in taking care of the Earth? Find major milestones since the advent of the first Earth day with this ...more
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Despite scary environmental news, what have we done to make progress in taking care of the Earth? Find major milestones since the advent of the first Earth day with this timeline. Follow from 1970 to the present by clicking through the items or choose from the icons in the smaller timeline along the top. Click on the photos to enlarge. Read articles below about the environment or about Earth Day and Earth Week activities.

tag(s): conservation (127), earth (228), earth day (112), environment (317), pollution (66)

In the Classroom

Search each event listed to learn more about the opinions, circumstances, and facts surrounding each event. Use the timeline as a springboard into discussions of various environmental topics. Use other applications such as Google Earth or sites that provide pictures and articles from past events. Compare air, water, or other pollution by viewing information or pictures from yesterday and today. Create campaigns of environmental issues. Use multimedia or conventional posters, websites, and podcasts to pass on important information. Have your students create an interactive online poster ("glog") using Glogster EDU, reviewed here. Have students create podcasts using a site such as PodOmatic (reviewed here).
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Battle of the Bags - msnbc.com

Grades
2 to 12
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Paper or plastic? Do you know which to pick? Start with the quick video introduction or a quiz that asks your habits. Follow with interactive segments that explain why people ...more
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Paper or plastic? Do you know which to pick? Start with the quick video introduction or a quiz that asks your habits. Follow with interactive segments that explain why people choose what they use, resources required to develop the bags, the reality of recycling, and the advantage of reusing. View the impact of using the bags, specific laws, and viewpoints from users that impact their decision to use of either paper or plastic. Advise students to ignore the ads and headlines that appear on this page.

tag(s): conservation (127), environment (317)

In the Classroom

Use this site to identify viewpoints, advantages, and disadvantages to using either paper or plastic. Plan a "paper or plastic challenge" in conjunction with Earth Day or your recycling unit. Consider surveying not only your classes, but also the school, parents, and greater community as to their habits. Gather data from your local supermarket. Compare with data from around the country or the world and identify reasons for the differences in the results. Use the information to create a debate for or against each resource. Create a campaign to educate others about the use of paper or plastic. Create a design for a bag that can be created simply and cheaply. Take photos of students' bags and have students narrate the photos using UtellStory, reviewed here. Sell these bags with the message for sustainability. Find support from your local supermarket. Research recycling in your area.
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350.org - 350.org

Grades
5 to 12
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Join the movement to urge citizens and lawmakers to take steps to reduce global CO2 levels to the number 350. Click on the "About" tab to learn the science, hear ...more
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Join the movement to urge citizens and lawmakers to take steps to reduce global CO2 levels to the number 350. Click on the "About" tab to learn the science, hear about the actions, and view media. Participate in activities such as "Days of Action." Register and sign up for email and text messages. Tip: rather than using your personal or work email, create a free Gmail account to use for memberships. If you plan to have students register individually, you may want to create your own Gmail account with up to 20 subaccounts for each group of students (by code name or number) within your classes. IIf you plan to have students register individually, you may want to create your own Gmail account with up to 20 subaccounts for each group of students (by code name or number) within your classes. Here is a blog post that tells how to set up GMail subaccounts to use for any online membership service.Learn from people around the world about how they are spreading the word about climate change.

tag(s): climate (92), climate change (64), earth (228), earth day (112), environment (317)

In the Classroom

View resources from around the world to look at the organized events conducted. Use these ideas to create a local event or identify the ways others have created communities around global climate action. Use information on the site to create Public Service Announcements, newsletters, or blog posts. Invite students to research sites on both sides of the issue, analyze them, and check information for accuracy. Create a blogging challenge or pledge for students to follow for forty days as a way to create change one family at a time. How about creating a 40 day class wiki about 350 and other global climate action? Not comfortable with wikis? Have no wiki worries - check out the TeachersFirst's Wiki Walk-Through.
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Exploring the Secret Life of Trees - University of Illinois Extension

Grades
2 to 9
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This animated video explains in detail how an acorn becomes a tree. The audio uses simple terms, however some vocabulary may need further explanation with younger grades. The slides...more
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This animated video explains in detail how an acorn becomes a tree. The audio uses simple terms, however some vocabulary may need further explanation with younger grades. The slides can be advanced or reversed with the buttons provided on the pages. This is a modern version of the old fashioned film strip. The narration is also available in Spanish.

tag(s): earth (228), earth day (112), trees (30)

In the Classroom

This is ideal for use on an interactive whiteboard or projector. Due to the ability to easily pause the video, students can take notes directly from the whiteboard. Create a guided note sheet to accompany the interactive by capturing the screens into PowerPoint slides or a smart notebook and put blank text boxes over the writing so that students can enter the information as they watch it. This is a great one to save in your favorites for an Earth Day activity! Have student create their own "tree stories" using digital pictures of a tree they know and narrating it on Slidestory, reviewed here.
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UN Water - United Nations Development Programme

Grades
4 to 12
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Water is a basic human need but also a human right. Explore the statistics, controversies, and issues concerning water use around the globe. Click on the "statistics" tab to learn ...more
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Water is a basic human need but also a human right. Explore the statistics, controversies, and issues concerning water use around the globe. Click on the "statistics" tab to learn important information about water resources, water uses, drinking water and sanitation, water pollution, environmental degradation, disasters, water, agriculture, and food security.

tag(s): conservation (127), earth (228), earth day (112), resources (111), water (130)

In the Classroom

Identify similarities and differences in water issues around the globe. Have cooperative learning groups create online Venn Diagrams comparing two distinct areas and their water issues. Use an online tool such as Interactive Two Circle Venn Diagram (reviewed here).

Students can choose an area or topic of interest either individually or as a group. Look at local water issues that many students may not be aware of including water quality and distribution. Create a campaign to increase water awareness that may or may not coincide with world water week (or day.) Have students create a video or podcast sharing their campaigns. For podcasts, use a site such as PodOmatic (reviewed here). If creating videos, share them on a site such as TeacherTube reviewed here.

Use these resources to determine how to help other countries in their need for clean water and how everyone can conserve.

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The Biology of Plants - Missouri Botanical Garden

Grades
1 to 4
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This simple site, generously illustrated with videos, explains the basics of plant life to elementary students, including information on how seeds germinate, plant parts, photosynthesis,...more
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This simple site, generously illustrated with videos, explains the basics of plant life to elementary students, including information on how seeds germinate, plant parts, photosynthesis, pollination, seed dispersal, and plant adaptations. Terms are defined in clear sidebars, and text is well-illustrated in the silent video clips. Watch a seed germinate in time lapse or seeds blow into the wind. The videos require Quicktime. Get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): earth (228), earth day (112), photosynthesis (33), plants (143)

In the Classroom

The reading level for the simple text on this site is mid-elementary, so many students will be able to navigate it on their own or with a reading buddy. Introduce the site on your projector or interactive whiteboard. If your projector can zoom into the videos, you can share them in large groups. You can also have students explore the site as a science center or for review/reinforcement of plant terminology. Have students or small groups make their own illustrated plant life cycles on paper, PowerPoint slides, or in an interactive book using a tool such as Bookemon, reviewed here.

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The Greens

Grades
3 to 8
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Meet the Green cousins, Dex and Izz, who are on a mission to make the world a little greener. Watch videos of Dex and Izz attempting to educate a whole ...more
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Meet the Green cousins, Dex and Izz, who are on a mission to make the world a little greener. Watch videos of Dex and Izz attempting to educate a whole cast of characters, including Dex's mom, Izz's dad, Granny, her cat, and the crazy neighbor lady, on how to become a little more earth friendly. These characters keep Izz and Dex on their toes throughout each comically, animated episode. Each episode has corresponding links that are filled with educational information about recycling, reusing and reducing. There is also a simple Blog (written by Izz and Dex). This site requires Flash.

tag(s): earth (228), earth day (112), environment (317)

In the Classroom

Share this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. This site is a perfect addition to Earth Day activities! Incorporate literacy skills into the site by having students read the silly blogs of each character. Extend into a writing assignment by having students create their own personal Green characters and write their own blogs for each episode.
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Mission H2O - Savewater

Grades
4 to 12
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Use this free game to identify how water is wasted and can be conserved in the home. Click Play Now to start the activity. This is part of a competition ...more
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Use this free game to identify how water is wasted and can be conserved in the home. Click Play Now to start the activity. This is part of a competition (that ends May 29, 2009). But the activities can be done without entering the contest. Choose from 8 rooms or places in the house that are identified by icons along the bottom and that portion pops-up. Click on the information areas designated with an "i" to view information about water use and conservation. Underneath each room, is an opportunity to play the game to save the family water. Many of the games are just for fun, but the whole experience is engaging. As this site originates in Australia, remember that many of the units of measure are different from ours.

tag(s): conservation (127), earth (228), earth day (112), water (130)

In the Classroom

Share this site on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Have students move through the rooms and take notes on conservation ideas and statistics. Students can use these notes to create a pamphlet on water conservation or a project that can be posted on a wiki. Do you want to learn more about wikis? Check out the TeachersFirst's Wiki Walk-Through.

Alternatively, post writing prompts that can be answered in a journal or a blog post about the thoughts, problems, and reasons for conserving. Students can analyze water usage in their homes or community and create suggestions or write a letter to the editor of the local paper or to local officials in favor of conservation.
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Virtual Forest - Scholastic.com

Grades
K to 8
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Teaching about our impact on the environment? Engage students through this game that moves through the choices in a daily life and the direct impact that they make. This site ...more
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Teaching about our impact on the environment? Engage students through this game that moves through the choices in a daily life and the direct impact that they make. This site requires Flash. Get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page..

tag(s): earth (228), earth day (112), ecology (135), environment (317)

In the Classroom

Use this game as an introductory activity to an ecology unit. As students play the game, they will note ways that we have an impact on the environment. Brainstorm what they learned in the end, either as a small group or as a class. Groups of students can research more information on these topics or use class discussions. Students can survey peers or families to determine habits and impact. Create multimedia or traditional posters that bring awareness to these issues. Why not have the class create a video or videos highlighting their topic? Have the students share the videos using a site such as Teachers.tv (reviewed here). Or have students create an online book using a tool such as Bookemon (reviewed here) and share it via email with family members.
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Bell Museum of Natural History - University of Minnesota

Grades
2 to 8
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Find interactive activities at the online activities page from this museum. Hover over objects on the "Touch and See Room" page to view information or participate in activities. Take...more
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Find interactive activities at the online activities page from this museum. Hover over objects on the "Touch and See Room" page to view information or participate in activities. Take the restoration challenge by restoring a barren landscape back to a prairie on the "Build a Prairie" page. Try the "Life in a Diorama" activity to view the connections in an ecosystem by simply hovering over areas of the diorama. Play the "Watershed Game" by entering your name and choosing novice or one of the intermediate levels. Students earn points and can improve upon their score while learning about watersheds. This site uses Flash. Get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page..

tag(s): air (163), conservation (127), earth (228), earth day (112), ecosystems (88), prairie (10), water (130), watersheds (16)

In the Classroom

Share the activities on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Use these activities as an introductory activity as you study each of these topics. For example, students can play the watershed game and note information that they learned. Students can compile this information to use as a starter for class discussion or additional research into watersheds. Have students create multimedia presentations to share with the class, such as a podcast using a tool such as Podomatic (reviewed here).

Follow up by visiting a local watershed and identifying the animals and plants and our relationship and impact on the ecosystem. Or map a local watershed with voice explanations using a tool such as Mapskip, reviewed here
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The Story of Stuff - Annie Leonard and Free Range Studios

Grades
6 to 12
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Watch the story of stuff movie, an interactive 20-minute video about where our stuff comes from and the effects of consumption on our society. Use the tabs along the top ...more
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Watch the story of stuff movie, an interactive 20-minute video about where our stuff comes from and the effects of consumption on our society. Use the tabs along the top of the video to skip around to the specific chapters or click a link for more information about the topic. Play the video from the site or download to your computer. Other downloads include posters and related items. Subscribe to the blog and receive updates and new information. Playing the movie requires Flash. Get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page..

tag(s): earth (228), earth day (112), environment (317), resources (111)

In the Classroom

The most difficult aspect in learning about the environment is understanding how the "stuff we use" impacts more than students can imagine. Use this thought-provoking movie to stimulate class discussions, get students thinking, and create awareness. Students can take aspects of the video and do group research of additional information needed to understand. Students can also create awareness campaigns, poll friends and families, blog, or create other multimedia articles. Looking for some creative multimedia options? How about having students create public service message podcasts ("Stop! Where do you think that ___ came from?") using a tool such as PodOMatic (reviewed here). Or create videos and share them using Teachers.tv (reviewed here).

Students can research the origins of many popular items in their lives, tracing the materials used and the resources needed to create and transport the materials and the product. Students can create a Google map or Mapskip (reviewed here) showing the movement of materials throughout the world from resource to send product to consumer.
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Planet Forward - The George Washington University

Grades
7 to 12
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Use Planet Forward for first rate and up-to-date news and information about the environment. View the vast amount of resources on this site including: "In the Spotlight," "Viewpoints,"...more
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Use Planet Forward for first rate and up-to-date news and information about the environment. View the vast amount of resources on this site including: "In the Spotlight," "Viewpoints," and "Blog articles" among others. Use quizzes about environmental issues, widgets to place in blogs or sites, and videos about issues. Use the "Classroom Resources" page for great ideas, discussions starters, and guides. This site requires Flash and Adobe Acrobat. You can get both from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): earth (228), earth day (112), environment (317), oil (46), oil spill (21)

In the Classroom

Where do you start? There is so much information on this site that is continually updated and interesting! Use the "Facts, Myths, and What most Americans know about energy" page to initiate discussions and identify misconceptions for study. Create student groups in major environmental categories such as Air Pollution, Energy Use, and Consumer Issues to mine the site for information. Create blog posts about issues, and create students' own surveys to identify local misconceptions to compare to those discussed on the site. Encourage students to apply their findings and information locally by writing for a local or school newspaper or to be interviewed about student work. Students can create videos, wiki pages, or other multimedia products to produce content, dispel or challenge myths, and create understanding of issues. Conventional products such as display boards, posters, and other announcements can also be created. Have students create online posters using a tool such as Tabblo (reviewed here). Make every day Earth Day by tying class topics into ecology issues. Use the "Fast Facts about Energy" section to choose eye catching charts as a starter to engaging discussions in the classroom. Use the charts and ask students to brainstorm questions and make observations in groups prior to class discussions. Use the questions as a springboard for student research.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Video: CFL Light Bulbs in Plain English - Common Craft

Grades
2 to 12
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This website offers a short video (about 3-minutes) highlighting the enormous benefits (both to your bank account and environment) of using CFL bulbs (rather than the old traditional...more
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This website offers a short video (about 3-minutes) highlighting the enormous benefits (both to your bank account and environment) of using CFL bulbs (rather than the old traditional light bulbs). The video focuses on energy, environment, electricity, ways to save money on your electric bill, how CFLs decrease and prevent pollution and global warming, and how easy they are to use!

Despite a paid membership model, Common Craft still offers this video for free, but it does have a watermark saying, "For evaluation only." If you wish to share this with a group, they will need to view it on individual/partner computers (or IOS devices) or on a projector that has a zoom function to enlarge a selected area of the screen.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): earth (228), earth day (112), energy (197), fossil fuels (18), light (46)

In the Classroom

Share this site in your science class on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Challenge students to research another way to conserve energy and save money in their family budget. Have students create their own "in plain English" style video. All they need is a tripod, video camera (flip video would work), paper drawings, and a script. Share the "student-created" videos on a tool such as TeacherTube (explained here) and embed them in a class "Energy-saving" wiki. You may want to consider providing this link on your class website for parents to view at home.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Act Green - Scholastic

Grades
K to 8
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Act Green provides many avenues for students to learn about going green and to put their green ideas into action. The site includes "100 Ways to Act Green," printables, and ...more
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Act Green provides many avenues for students to learn about going green and to put their green ideas into action. The site includes "100 Ways to Act Green," printables, and many other features! Join the site for free (no email address is required) and become part of the Green Team by fueling the Greenerator! Students earn points for taking green action and can even become Greeniacs! This site requires Flash and Adobe Acrobat. You can get both from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page.

tag(s): earth (228), earth day (112), environment (317)

In the Classroom

This outrageously green site can serve as a guide for Earth Day activities. Extend it further and start a class project that could expand throughout the entire school and community. Share the interactives and other ideas on your projector or interactive whiteboard. Highlight some of the "100 Ways to Act Green" in your classroom. List this site on your class website for families to use at home. Have cooperative learning groups explore various facets of this site and complete a simple video sharing their findings. Share the videos using a site such as Teachers.tv (reviewed here).
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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