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Freshmen Academy ninth-grade students at Carver Area High School in Chicago will consider the importance of maintaining an unpolluted water source for today and for the future. In this interdisiciplinary unit of study students will look at the wonders and beauty of nature and the effects of pollution and determine the necessity for making immediate changes in our daily water habits. The students of Mrs. Joyce Patton(English), Mr. Kenneth Dean(Mathematics), Mrs. Renita Johnson, and Mr. Adam Wagner(Social Studies) will undertake this course of study during the 2nd semester of the 1997-1998 school year. The estimated time of commencement is at the during the spring of 1998. Writing, reading, listening and research activities will develop language arts skills. Sampling water will implement the goals for earth science and environmental science. Social Studies aspects will be the consideration of how decisions are made in a democractic society and the need for public reponsibility and involvement. Mathematics will be necessary for reading the results of water sample analyses and estimation of potential problems in the future. Technology skills in the areas of word processing and use of the internet will comprise a major component of this engaged learning unit.

Students will be presented with the following problems:

A group of students who are leaving school for the day stop to get some water from the water fountain near the student exit. There is no water coming from the fountain. They walk down the hall to the next water fountain. there is no water there. The students look puzzled, but they see the coming. Shatae comments, "Oh well, we can get some water when we get home". They laugh and go home. Monique arrives home first. She checks the water faucet in the kitchen. No Water. She goes to the refrigerator. No water. The other students arrive home to similar fates. In their community on the southeast side of Chicago, there is no fresh, clean water.

Students while doing research for an environmental project come across a newspaper article from 1982. The article discusses a teacher who became ill while teaching at this high school. Many questions come to mind. One question of great concern is whether the air and water in this area are safe for the residents of the community and for the people who work and attend school here. Our project will concentrate on the importance of clean water for the individuals involved in this area.

Their tasks are:

This web page will outline and highlight the English/Language Arts objectives, activities and assessment. Students will report their findings, write letters, and create a Community Resource Guide to assist other students, parents, and community residents in taking actions to research a community issue or problem and taking the necessary action(s) indicated by that research. Students are being asked in urban settings such as Chicago to increase their levels of achievement. This can and will be done when students are given instruction and tasks which simulation the students' interest, motivation, and thinking. Students will become researchers, problem solvers, technology users, writers, and community leaders during this unit. It is hoped that much of this knowledge will then be shared with other students and community members

More and more school districts are requiring community service time for graduating seniors. This area of Community Service could prove one arena of service which would provide a multi-faceted source of good works and accomplishment.

Student will work in groups of 3-4 team members. These teams will test water, report the findings, decide upon the best action to take based on the findings, write letters to businesses, elected officials and politicians, and contact and work with community leaders and organizations. Each team will contribute to a Clean Water Community Manual.

(Listing of 5 State of Illinois English Language Arts Goals and Hot Links for teachers)


(Graphic Courtesy of Icon Bazaar)

Created for the Fermilab LInC program sponsored by Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory Education Office, Friends of Fermilab, United States Department of Energy, Illinois State Board of Education, and North Central Regional Technology in Education Consortium which is operated by North Central Regional Educational Laboratory (NCREL).
Author(s): Constance Benson cbenson@teacher.depaul.edu
School: George Washington Carver Area High School, Chicago, Illinois
Created: October 18, 1997 - Updated: January 19,1998
URL: /lincon/f97/projects/cbenson/scenario.htm