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Classroom Activities for Teaching Public Policy in the Earth Sciences

This collection of teaching materials allows for the sharing of ideas and activities within the community of geoscience teachers. Do you have a favorite teaching activity you'd like to share? Please help us expand this collection by contributing your own teaching materials.

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The Use of a Piece of Land part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Role Playing:Examples
In this role-playing exercise, students represent groups interested in buying the same piece of land and will need to consult land-use laws. -

WorldWatcher Project: Global Warming Project part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Role Playing:Examples
In this exercise, students role-play advisors to various heads of state on the subject of global warming. The web site also has free modeling and GIS software and lesson and lab plans. -

Using Data to Teach Earth ProcessesAn Illustrated Community Discussion at the 2003 Annual Meeting of the Geological Society of America part of Cutting Edge:Geoscience in the Field:Field Experiences:Posters
A virtual and traditional field trip experience that was designed to study how virtual field trips should be used in geoscience curriculum. Field trip exercises are based on a local groundwater controversy that ...

Environmental Health Risk Inventory part of Cutting Edge:Public Policy:Activities
In this activity, students perform an environmental health risk inventory of a selected locale. Students will address anthropogenic and natural health risks of an area using data collected from various online ...

Energy Policy part of Cutting Edge:Public Policy:Activities
Students research and make recommendations regarding the petroleum energy policy of the U.S. with respect to other countries.

The Great Energy Debate part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Role Playing:Examples
This lesson plan explores the energy debate in the U.S. Students will hold a mock congressional committee meeting and make decisions about public lands and energy resources. -

Gallery Walk Questions about Human Dimensions part of Starting Point-Teaching Entry Level Geoscience:Gallery Walks:Examples
created by Mark Francek, Central Michigan University The following are potential questions that could be used in a gallery walk activity about the human dimensions of geologic issues. The questions are organized ...

Sustainable Urban Adventure part of Integrate:Workshops:Systems, Society, Sustainability and the Geosciences:Activities
In this field based activity students explore their new home in an effort to get acquainted with the community beyond the campus and to experience accessible recreation on a nationally recognized hiking trail. During the nature-based outdoor recreation experience, students explore a variety of natural and cultural history topics.

Observing different scenarios of climate change using climate challenge web game part of SISL:Activities
Use the web game Climate Challenge by the British Broadcasting Corporation to observe how decision by government can contribute to climate change. By seeing the consequence of government inaction in an interactive web experience, students will be more engaged citizens and voters. To show students that we live in a world with finite resources.

Selecting Sites for Renewable Energy Projects part of Cutting Edge:Enhance Your Teaching:Teaching Methods:Teaching with Google Earth:Examples
Students use Google Earth to investigate appropriate locations for a variety of renewable energy projects in the United States. These include projects that use solar energy, bioenergy, hydroelectricity, tidal power, wind energy, wave energy, and geothermal energy.