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Bioregion Topical Vocabulary

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Building Sustainable Communities, But What Kind?
Hannah Love, Pacific Lutheran University
This assignment, depending on the level and depth of implementation, seeks to challenge students by asking them to look beyond "greenwashed" advertisements and buzzwords to grapple with what sustainability means, whether it can be achieved, and what kinds of questions communities must confront in a search for sustainability.

Bioregion Discipline: Religious Studies, Environmental Studies
Bioregion Scale: Regional
Bioregion Topical Vocabulary: Energy, Human Heath & Wellbeing, Sustainability Concepts & Practices

Race, Class, Gender and the Earth Crisis: Sustainability and Social Justice Meet
Dr. Cynthia Moe-Lobeda, Seattle University
Students work collaboratively to construct knowledge about the intersection of social justice and ecological integrity. Students will chose a consumer product that has adverse ecological and social justice impacts and develop a set of proposals for action that would challenge, dismantle or diminish those adverse consequences.

Bioregion Discipline: Religious Studies
Bioregion Topical Vocabulary: Ecosystem Health, Social & Environmental Justice, Sustainability Concepts & Practices, Promising Pedagogies:Reflective & Contemplative Practice, Learning Communities

"The Great Turning" Bioregional Community Fair
Randy Morris, Antioch University Seattle
An activity that involves students in organizing, promoting, and conducting a bioregional community fair, as well as engaging in community-based research. This would be appropriate in any introductory course on sustainability that explores the needed changes in worldviews and behaviors in order to realize sustainable societies.

Bioregion Discipline: Religious Studies
Bioregion Scale: Campus
Bioregion Topical Vocabulary: Ecosystem Health, Sense of Place, Promising Pedagogies:Reflective & Contemplative Practice, Sustainability Concepts & Practices

How Many Plants Make a Future? The Carbon Dioxide Challenge
Rus Higley, Highline Community College Marine Science and Technology Center, Vanessa Hunt and Timothy Sorey, Central Washington University
This activity focuses on the role of photosynthesis in a sustainable future. Students explore the effect of photosynthesis and respiration in a 'closed systems' containing plankton, marine plants, and fish. By calculating carbon dioxide uptake and production in these systems, they predict a plant: animal ratio sufficient to maintain a system in carbon dioxide 'balance' for one hour.

Bioregion Discipline: Environmental Studies, Biology, Chemistry, Mathematics
Bioregion Topical Vocabulary: Sustainability Concepts & Practices, Climate Change, Ecosystem Health

Ecosystem Services and Environmental Economics
Claus Svendsen, Department of Environmental Conservation, Skagit Valley College
In this exercise, students explore the value of ecosystem services of an ecological restoration project that they are proposing. They will be able to compare the ecosystem services value to the cost of the restoration project.

Bioregion Discipline: Environmental Studies, Interdisciplinary Studies
Bioregion Scale: Local Community/Watershed
Bioregion Topical Vocabulary: Ecosystem Health, Natural Resources, Water & Watersheds, Human Impact & Footprint, Sustainability Concepts & Practices

Using Reflection Activities in the Field to Deepen Student Learning
Holly Hughes, Edmonds Community College
This activity offers one of the reflection activities we developed in our learning community "Exploring Natural History in Word and Field." In this class, the students learn about natural history by reading natural history essays and participating in field trips. In this activity, we use reflection before and during a field trip to an Old Growth Forest to help our students clarify their own stance for a Position Paper on whether and under what conditions logging should be allowed in Old Growth Forests.

Bioregion Discipline: Sociology, History, Environmental Studies
Bioregion Topical Vocabulary: Ecosystem Health, Social & Environmental Justice, Human Impact & Footprint, Promising Pedagogies:Reflective & Contemplative Practice, Sustainability Concepts & Practices, Sense of Place

Teaching about Teaching Sustainability
David Shapiro, Cascadia Community College
This course combines an in-class activity and a service-learning option. Students familiarize themselves with the dynamic behind a particular kind of human induced environmental challenge and then develop a lesson plan to teach the dynamic to younger students in a classroom setting.

Bioregion Discipline: Philosophy, Education
Bioregion Scale: Global
Bioregion Topical Vocabulary: Promising Pedagogies:Civic Engagement & Service Learning, Lifestyles & Consumption, Sustainability Concepts & Practices, Natural Resources

Organic Chemistry: Friend or Foe? An Organic Chemistry Special Investigation
Neal A. Yakelis, Pacific Lutheran University
Students are asked to work in teams to find a claim in the media relating to the impact of an organic compound (or class of organic compounds) on the environment and its inhabitants. Their chosen compound should have an effect on the sustainability of plant or animal life, or, in particular, the sustainability of human health.

Bioregion Discipline: Chemistry
Bioregion Scale: Global
Bioregion Topical Vocabulary: Cycles & Systems, Human Heath & Wellbeing, Ecosystem Health, Sustainability Concepts & Practices

Chemistry Laboratory Waste Evaluation
Tracy D. Harvey, University of Washington
From the scientific viewpoint, this evaluation will help the students see a process instead of just a data collection event, and they will get to practice estimating amounts. They will also need to determine the products of any reactions performed during the experiment. From the standpoint of sustainability, this evaluation is intended to help the student recognize the environmental "cost" of an experiment-in consumables used and in waste products generated.

Bioregion Discipline: Chemistry
Bioregion Topical Vocabulary: Ecosystem Health, Sustainability Concepts & Practices, Human Heath & Wellbeing, Pollution & Waste, Social & Environmental Justice

Developing a Transportation Survey to Estimate Gasoline Use by Campus Commuters
Steven Bogart, Shoreline Community College
Through this activity, students in a liberal arts mathematics class will develop experience with real-world statistical concepts through the context of sustainability: estimation, survey writing, sampling techniques, and data analysis.

Bioregion Discipline: Geoscience, Environmental Studies, Mathematics
Bioregion Scale: Regional
Bioregion Topical Vocabulary: Sustainability Concepts & Practices, Natural Resources, Climate Change

Evergreen State College