Environmental awareness and care in the science curriculum

Fifth and sixth class 

Strand unit: Environmental awareness

The child should be enabled to

  • Identify positive aspects of natural and built environments through observation,
    discussion and recording
    colours, textures and shapes in rural and
    urban areas
    diversity of plant and animal life
    range of materials, buildings, walls and other
    features places that people enjoy and the reasons for these preferences
  • Explore some examples of the interrelationship of living and non-living
    aspects of local and other environments
    ecosystem of tree, hedgerow, stream
    boglands, mountains, lowlands, river
    rainforest, grasslands, desert, tundra
  • Become aware of the importance of the Earth’s renewable and non-renewable resources
  • Foster an appreciation of the ways in which people use the Earth’s resources
    mining, fishing, forestry, agriculture
    using wind, water, fossil fuels or nuclear energy to generate power
    processing raw materials for manufacturing
    using the environment for leisure activities
  • Come to appreciate the need to conserve resources
    recycling of materials, use of paper packaging
    in contrast to some plastic packaging,
    identifying materials that can be used for a variety of purposes,
    turning off lights, reducing the amounts of water used

Strand unit: Science and the environment

The child should be enabled to

  • appreciate the application of science and technology in familiar contexts
    at home: microwave oven, cooker, dustbin, coffee maker
    at school: photocopier, projector, information and communication technologies
    in the work-place: conveyor belts and pulleys
    in a factory; pneumatic drill, cement mixer and crane on a building site
    in hospitals: stethoscope, X-ray, radium treatment
    in designing and making activities
  • Examine some ways that science and technology have contributed positively to the use of the Earth’s resources
    purifying water, mixing materials to produce new materials, medicines, processing food, preserving food, generating electricity, using fertilisers for increased agricultural yields
  • Recognise the contribution of scientists to society
    work of scientists in the past and present
  • Recognise and investigate aspects of human activities that may have positive or adverse effects on environments
    activities that protect flora and fauna, such as creating a wildlife area and planting trees enhance built environments
    affect the quality of air, soil, water and the built environment

Strand unit: Caring for the environment

The child should be enabled to

  • Participate in activities that contribute to the enhancement of the environment
    organise collection of paper, aluminium cans or other materials for recycling
    become aware of the need to use energy
    wisely in school and at home
    compost waste for garden
  • Identify and discuss a local, national or global environmental issue
    such as
    effect of building a new factory, new roads, buildings
    farming practices
    traffic congestion, road safety
    suggestions for environmental enhancement
    an incident of pollution, deforestation,
    ozone depletion, nuclear energy, global warming
    investigate the causes of the issue
    appreciate the roles and different views of people involved
    identify and use ways of assessing or measuring the extent of the problem
    suggest possible actions and consider the effect of these on people and the environment
    participate in the resolution of the issue, if possible
  • Come to appreciate individual, community and national responsibility for environmental care
    explore concept of custodianship and its practical implications
    become familiar with the concept of sustainable development
    appreciate the need to protect environments for present and future inhabitants