On a recent drive with my husband, we saw wind turbines on a mountain ridge. He mentioned that he had talked to our local government about whether they would ever put up wind turbines on the mountains in our area, and they said they would not. This surprised me, but the reason they gave him made a lot of sense. Our mountain ridges are major migratory routes for several types of birds. Putting up wind turbines would disrupt the migration pattern.
And now we have questions about wind turbines and the possible connections to whale deaths.
By late elementary school, students are old enough to grapple with problems like this. Why do we care if we disrupt a migration route for a bird? Should we care? When we think we are doing something good for our environment, do we sometimes end up creating another, or even worse, problem? Lots of driving questions, lots of possible authentic projects.
Lots of authentic ways to incorporate reading, writing, math, science, social studies, art…