Students are bombarded with negative news every day. The doom and gloom of environmental issues can leave students overwhelmed and paralyzed. I develop products that help students understand the unique power of youth voice and choice, without making them feel personally responsible for the fate of our planet. My resources feature perspectives from many different stakeholders, highlight case studies from people many geographies, and depict students from many different racial and ethnic backgrounds.
A project-based learning unit for middle school
The Southern Resident killer whales are among the most endangered marine mammals in the entire world. As of September 2021, only 73 individuals remain. With such dire news, it is challenging to help students understand how they can make a meaningful difference and feel hopeful for the fate of this iconic population. This problem-based learning unit helps students understand the pros and cons of individual, collective, and governmental action and the unique power of youth voice in advocating for change. Through real-world scenarios, students take on the positions of many stakeholders and resource managers involved in Southern Resident conservation and recovery and discover that when we protect the Southern Resident, their prey, and their habitat, our greater communities benefit.
Topics: Changemaking, collective action, bioaccumulation, noise pollution, ripple effects
Primary audience: Middle school
Primer on ocean health
This graphics-forward handbook introduces nine of the most pressing issues facing our ocean today. Each easy-to-understand summary concludes with tangible ways for individuals to make a difference. There is an entire section dedicated to well-known and unsung ocean heroes and activities to engage classes, schools, and afterschool clubs in marine sciences.
Topics: Marine debris, ocean acidification, overfishing, oil spills, pharmaceuticals, runoff, sea level rise, shoreline armoring, wildlife interactions
Primary audience: High school, adult education
Children's book and curriculum on salmon stewardship
This series is centered around the incredible journey that salmon make to complete their life cycle. The vividly-illustrated children’s book introduces salmon as a keystone species and cultural icon. The corresponding 10-lesson curriculum kicks off with lessons on salmon biology and life history before underscoring the cultural, economic, and environmental importance of salmon in the Pacific Northwest and around the world. The latter lessons provide case studies of students who are making a difference for salmon and complete scaffolding for student action projects.
Topics: Culture, economy, keystone species, stewardship, watersheds
Primary audience: Elementary school
What a Waste!Curriculum on household, hazardous, and nuclear waste
Throughout this unit, students are asked to reflect on how waste is connected to their own lives and to investigate paths toward a zero-waste lifestyle. Case studies from the Love Canal tragedy and the Hanford Nuclear Reservation provide students with historical accounts of waste management trends throughout the 20th century, and help students better understand how legacy pollutants are affecting society and the environment today.
Topics: Civic participation, hazardous waste, household waste, environmental science, governmental regulation, nuclear waste
Primary audience: High school