Lesson Plans

2018 Humanities and the Sunshine State: Teaching Florida’s Climates Final Lesson Plans

Cameron Barton BartonActionPlan – Maclay School,  6th grade science
“Relevance of Blue”: Reconnecting the next generation of Floridians to our fragile freshwater. Lesson Plan
Engaging visual elements such as photography and underwater cameras, this lesson plan asks students to research one of the Florida springs in order to understand the changes overtime. It looks to understand climate change in a hopeful way as it investigates humans within the hydrologic cycle and changing our water ethic.

Martha Baugh  – Episcopal School of Jacksonville, 7th grade Earth Science and Biology
“Systems Mapping” Lesson Ideas
These lesson ideas draws from systems thinking. One idea engages this method of thought in order to map the energy balance in the atmosphere and the carbon cycle. Students then connect their impact with other human impacts by calculating their carbon footprints online and then interact with one another and their results in a discussion of consumer habits. Graphs are analyzed in order to determine validity of science based data.

Caitlin Bobsein BobseinActionPlan— Cardinal Newman High School, 11-12th grades Earth Science and Biology
Climate Fiction Lesson Ideas
Drawing from a cross-curricular approach, these lesson ideas have students review climate fiction novels and then create their own.

Gary Brown BrownActionPlan– Heartland Christian Academy, Religion, Economics, History
Lesson Ideas
These lesson ideas incorporate a variety of activities in order to help students resonate with climate change. Some include: starting an onsite recycling campaign in order to show the importance of daily actions; creating a flow chart to show the interconnectedness of systems; and investigating biblical references that highlight reverence and care for the earth.

Linda Buquet BuquetActionPlan – Gateway K-8 Environmental Learning Center, 4th grade Writing/Reading/Math, Science gifted in collaboration with 7th grade AP science
“Green Dreamers Jr. Forester Carbon Calculations: Measuring Carbon in trees
After a discussion of trees and the carbon cycle, this lesson plan brings students outside to measure trees (using inches and centimeters) in the school yard or a city park. Biomass is calculated and monitored over the course of a 9 month period. A discussion of carbon storage and the role of trees in the environment follows.

Ana Casanova CasanovaActionPlan – W.R. Thomas Middle School, 7th grade science
“Water as a Natural Resource” Lesson Ideas
In this collection of ideas, students will engage in research using the UF Archive in order to compile historical information and analyze data that will allow them to identify the impact that humans have had on the planet: such as deforestation, urbanization, desertification, erosion, changing the flow of water, air and water quality. Special emphasis on the historic polluting of major bodies of water in our state (rivers, estuaries, springs, oceans).

Deb Caventer CaventerActionPlan – Dixie Hollins High School, 10th grade World History
Lesson Ideas
Students are asked to think about the future in this series of ideas as they are introduced to the term ‘anthropocene.’ They explore native interactions, fossil fuel extraction, and industrialization as the start of this era. This is placed within the larger context of ‘why,’ a lens to look through as they see humans’ roles throughout history with the rise and fall of such places like Rome.

Ann Cook CookActionPlan– West Melbourne Elementary, 4th grade science
Lesson Ideas
These lesson ideas draw largely from stories in order to show scientific processes. For example, reading books on manatees can provide an understanding of animal life cycles and food chains. Texts on tress such as The Lorax or The Giving Tree shows the natural cycle and how one may be affected by climate change. Adding to this idea would be the hands on activity of setting up a terrarium. Stories would be produced by students through Haikus and comeback stories analyzed through the comeback stories of eagles, otters, bison and wolves.

Greg Cunningham CunninghamActionPlan – PK Yonge DRS, 7th grade interdisciplinary
Lesson Ideas
Drawing from Richard Louv, these ideas recognize students’ need for an emotional relationship with nature. The goal is to cultivate this interest in using the lens of climate change through field trips and experimental learning about the local water system and the carbon cycle through positive impact and hope. Activities include adopting a tree and exploring it scientifically through measuring height, mass and carbon flow as well as investigating it using a humanities based angle by writing about it’s location and telling the tree’s story via personification.

Jacqueline Curls CurlsActionPlan– North Fort Myers High School, 9-12the grades Biology
Lesson Ideas
These ideas include larger ways of engaging students through documentary film and field trip exposure. One idea starts with showing students the documentary Racing Extinction (2015). The assignment then changes the questions at the end of the film to include student research regarding current concerns in life. It ends with the creation of a PSA. Another idea is to increase field trips and investigate the Florida Master Naturalist program.

Jeffery Dearing DearingActionPlan– Doral Academy Prepartory School, 11-12th grades Honors/AP English
“Causality and Human Agency in …. (any work of Western literature)” Lesson Plan
Using a systems flow chart, this lesson plan asks students to work in groups to evaluate the literary variables (character, setting) inciting the plot and what measure of human agency, if any, can be accounted for the plot’s unfolding and character development.

Laura Dormady DormadyActionPlan – Wadsworth Elementary School, Middle/High Social Studies
“Resource and Human Migration”: Human migration is rarely by choice but usually due to a cataclysmic event, Lesson Plan
Utilizing maps and projected maps, students choose a city in Florida where they wish to live. In this lesson plan, they are given various resources represented by beads. As time and resources changes so does the map. Issues like salt water intrusion arise, thereby altering the land. Discussions about green actions follow.  

Wayne Douchkoff 2018 Action Plan Douchkoff Teaching Florida Climates (1) – IFAS Manatee County Extension Office, Non-traditional environmental education
“What do you mean, ‘This water ain’t safe to swim in?’ Lesson Plan
This lesson plan lends itself to a group discussion of water quality as it defines common water quality attributes as participants’ measure, record and discuss water testing. It fosters a conversation of the human impact on water quality as causal relationships arise. Assessment of students is measured through pre/post tests and survey perceptions of water quality two weeks later.

Kathryn Dunn DunnActionPlan – American Cooperative School, La Paz, Bolivia, 4th grade
Introducing Systems Structure
Lesson Ideas
In order to introduce the idea of systems, this collection of lesson ideas draw heavily from comparing/contrasting environments and time periods. First the class partners with a class in the USA to talk about weather and climate change evidence they see in their community, compared to Bolivia. A scavenger hunt through Chronicling America adds to this information, along with venn diagrams, flow charts, climate fictions, and oral histories from grandparents to compare the past and present.

Carol Goldenberg Carol Golderberg Action Plan– William T. Dwyer High School, 9-12th grades IB Biology
“Evaluating Claims that Human Activities Are Not Causing Climate Change” Lesson Plan
In this lesson plan, students are asked to evaluate evidence of climate change through measuring the carbon in trees, investigating anthropogenic activities, comparing data of climate before/after humans, comparing climate deniers and scientific facts and finally by researching what is currently being done to mitigate climate change.

Led Itzxkowitz ItzkowltzActionPlan – New Hope School, 2nd
“Life cycle of manatee and effect climate” Lesson Plan
This lesson plan provides students with insight into human impacts by looking at the life of manatees. Boat propellers, habitat degradation, and water pollution are presented as threatening harms to manatees. The lesson looks to connect further with students by participating in the adopt-a-manatee program and taking field trips to see manatees in the winter months.

Carley James JamesActionPlan – Discovery High School, 9-11th grades Physical science
“Agriscience Foundations” Lesson Ideas
In an effort to expose students to hand-on material and concrete examples, these lesson ideas draw from historical newspapers, micro fictions, and cases studies to investigate ecosystems and the environment in Florida. To show a real-world example of best management practices, the class will have a Skpe interview with someone from the Austin Cary Forest about prescribed burns.

Francia Lamus  LamusActionPlan– Oxbridge Academy of the Palm Beaches, 9-12 Wold Language Spanish
“Global Climate Changes”: Florida’ Climate Changes and Global Impact, Lesson Plan
For this lesson plan, students conduct research on Florida’s climate changes by selecting a topic and creating a project. Topics range from agriculture and global warming to springs and water conservation. Projects draw largely from visual aids and ask student engage their creativity to compose infographics, photos with hashtags, PSAs, satirical comic strips and/or a synopsis for a film or book.

Kate Munkittrick MunkittrickActionPlan– St. Petersburg High School, 9th grade English/Inquiry Skills
“Systems of Plot” Lesson Plan
After reading a text (probably short climate fiction), this lesson plan asks students work as a class to create a word bank of characters, settings, beliefs, and actions that are important to the text. Then they divide into smaller groups to identify the connection between those pieces. They discuss the impact of removing or changing any piece of the system thereby showing the importance of systems thinking and interactions.

Cynthia Nash NashActionPlan – Lake Sumter State College, Life Science, Intro Biology, Anatomy & Physiology College Course
“Incorporating systems thinking as a way to focus on biological and human physiology systems” Lesson Ideas
These lesson ideas look to change the perspective on presenting core concepts as singular ideas. Drawing from climate fictions, psychology and hope theories, these activities help students realize that scientific facts are embedded in a narrative that connects to people.

Judy Ngying NgyingActionPlan– Lake Howell High School, 10-12th grades Chemistry
Lesson Plan
Students walk away from this lesson understanding the connection of climate change to changes in salinity in vulnerable areas such as their St. Johns water district. After an introduction to climate change, a lab experiment using molarity calculation via food coloring is used to show varying salt concentrations. Resources connect this information to human activities. This further reinforces the notion that our human actions of over consumption will physically change our environment.  

Tamara Opalek OpalekActionPlan – Lewis Anna Woodbury Elementary, Elementary levels science/reading
“Effect of Climate Change of Trees” Lesson Plan
Flows charts and paper slides start this lesson plan and the conversation of how to compare the natural life cycle of trees and what happens to a tree under climate change conditions. Books like The Grand Old Tree and The Great Kapok Tree relate this concept to students, especially younger ones. Through this lesson life cycles, the chart of a tree and greening (orange disease) are revealed along with the importance of acting as a global citizen and having hope for the future.

Anna Osbourne  Osborne- Action Plan– Plantation Key School, Gifted K-5 grades ELA Project Based learning Middle School Drama
Lesson Ideas
All of these lesson ideas look to bridge the gap between science and the humanities in the local region of the Florida Keys. Drawing from the systems dance in addition to various poems and literature, these exercises look to connect climate change by focusing on the human condition. For example, one idea draws from the novel A Land Remembered (1984) and asks students to record different animals and plants mentioned throughout the text. When this is complete, students compare and graph the population of this flora and fauna from the date in the text through today.

Glaribel Pinero-Amaro PineroAmaroActionPlan – Liberty Park Elementary, Elementary levels science/reading
“Effect of Climate Change of Trees” Lesson Plan
Flows charts and paper slides start this lesson plan and the conversation of how to compare the natural life cycle of trees and what happens to a tree under climate change conditions. Books like The Grand Old Tree and The Great Kapok Tree relate this concept to students, especially younger ones. Through this lesson life cycles, the chart of a tree and greening (orange disease) are revealed along with the importance of acting as a global citizen and hope for the future.

Jessica Reeves ReevesActionPlan – South Plantation High School, 9th grade English
“A New Land Remembered” Lesson Plan
Using creative writing in this lesson plan, students interact with the anthropocene effects on South Florida’s climate over a period of decades and into the future. This is done by choosing a significant historical event from the novel A Land Remembered (1984) and then finding three articles from Chronicling America that discuss that event, in addition to an oral history talking about this occurrence. System thinking is engaged to show cause and effect. Students end the assignment by using their research to write a sequel to the novel, based in the year 2025.

Mark Risisky Risisky Florida Climates Action Plan–Glades Central Community High School, US History
“Learn from your elders especially the lesson they are unaware they teach” Lesson Plan
In an effort to better understand historical events, oral history methods are employed as students interview three older relatives or community members about an event they learned about which that person experienced. Students takeaway a new found appreciation for a variety of perspectives and elders as a source of knowledge. Furthermore students see themselves as agents/actors in history.

Jarrett Roker RokerAction Plan – William T. Dwyer High School, 11-12th AICE Marine Science
“Snook population rises and falls in the state of Florida” Lesson Plan
In this lesson, past Snook populations are compared with current populations to teach about ecosystems and biodiversity. Science concepts that arise include populations growth/decline, climate change (temperate), and coastline (habitat) change. Humanities concepts include human impacts on fishing and state regulations. By the end of the lesson, student are able to overlay weather data, human effects and other factors that have affected the Florida Snook population and distribution.

Belinda Rowe RoweActionPlan –Brucie Ball Education Center, Middle School 6-9th grades Reading/Math/Social Science/Science
“Teaching about Hurricanes” Lesson Ideas
After reading chapters 6 and 7 of Their Eyes Were Watching God, students use a T-chart to compare the Hurricane of 1928 with their own experience during the 2017 Hurricane Irma. They discuss what was seen, heard, and the feeling afterward.

Susan Sawczak SawczakActionPlan –Martin County High School, 10-12th grade AP AA History/AP World History
Lesson Ideas
Comparative history is emphasized in these lesson ideas. One of the activities uses comparative case studies to show the similarities and differences of various indigenous groups and their effects on the environment. This is exemplified through indigenous American art as seen with ancestral Puebloans vs native Floridians vs Maya vs Inca. Another idea engages the systems dance surrounding historical themes, events, and ideas to show how interconnected the world is.

Brenda Skoczelas SkoczelasActionPlan– Lake Sumter State College, College Physics
Lesson Ideas
These lesson ideas move beyond the sciences to show the ethical dimensions of human choices. In addition to presenting raw science facts, the students are asked to think about the pros and cons to each course and its impact on the environment through a flow chart for each type of energy source. More specifically, they are asked how each energy source impacts climate change. Another idea hopes to promote ethical engineers by asking students why they are pursuing a degree in engineering and how engineering technology can be utilized and developed in a way that is efficient, cost-effective and environmentally safe.

Jeffrey Sones SonesActionPlan – Brucie Ball Education Center, Students with Physical Disabilities
Lesson Ideas
These lesson ideas deviate from traditional classroom lessons offering a much wider reach. Collaboration and connection with colleagues is central in an effort to encourage conservation efforts in both classrooms with students have that physical and emotional disabilities. Hope and the psychology of change will be the key concepts promoted in these areas.

Adeena Teres TeresActionPlan –Stoneman Douglas, 9-10th grade Earth Science, Biology
Lesson Ideas
For this series of lesson ideas, students take matters into their own hands as they are asked to have a voice in response to climate change. One activity has them create their own political cartoon by responding to a climate change topic while another exercise asks them to pick a daily habit they can change which will help mitigate climate change.

Patricia Yancey Yancey Lesson Ideas–Howard Bishop Middle School, 8th grade ELA
Lesson Ideas
In this series of lesson students will compare and contrast writing styles and racial issues mentioned in literature. One example would be to use the novel Their Eyes Were Watching God. Students will be asked to cite evidence, compare and contrasting writing style and analyzing writing. A similar activity can be done with other literature.