This assignment requires you to identify one SPECIFIC contemporary environmental problem in Australia and describe an inquiry learning project about that problem. The Inquiry Learning Project must be suitable for primary school children and relevant to the content and outcomes of the science and technology KLA.
Inquiry learning ideally needs to facilitate students’ ownership of decisions and choices as much as practicable. Therefore, when you are in the classroom you might prefer that individuals or groups choose their own issues to investigate. For the purposes of this assignment, though, you must specify the environmental problem.
Some examples of  environmental problems you could choose include (but are not limited to):
•    Water shortages
•    Salinity
•    Loss of biodiversity, land clearing, habitat loss
•    Climate change
•    Weed invasion
•    Feral animals
•    Fossil fuel consumption
•    Pollution (air, soil or water)
•    Waste disposal, litter
•    Erosion
Part A: 10 marks
Describe your chosen environmental problem.
1 Discuss the problem in general, saying why it is of general concern. You will need to thoroughly research and report on the issue, referencing the sources of your information in your work according to the UNE referencing guide.
2 Then discuss the local relevance of the problem in Armidale or your home town. In particular describe how it might be relevant to the experiences or understandings of primary school students, their families, school, or their local community?
Part B: 5 marks
1 Identify some learning objectives/outcomes that you could address with an inquiry learning project about this problem. Projects of this sort are highly relevant to learning outcomes across multiple Key Learning Areas (KLAs) and allow you to use precious teaching and learning time efficiently. However, for the purposes of this assignment (and because other relevant syllabuses especially HSIE are in such flux), and because this is a S&T unit, only learning objectives and outcomes from the following two sources need to be included.
a) NEW Science and Technology K-6 Syllabus. This is the Primary component of the new NSW Science K-10 syllabus based on the Australian Curriculum.
Identify at least one outcome from each of the Knowledge and Understandings, Skills, and Values and Attitudes domains. For each of the Knowledge and Understandings and Skills outcomes, identify at least one content ‘dot point’ relevant to the inquiry learning project (there is no content for the Values and Attitudes domain).  If you are not planning to teach in NSW and would prefer to use your own state/territory/country syllabus, feel free to do so. If you do use other syllabus documents, please select equivalent outcomes/content from your syllabus and include the title and URL of the relevant syllabus documents.
b) DET (2001) Environmental education policy for schools pp. 10-11 (Curriculum objectives). Identify at least one outcome from each of the Knowledge and Understandings, Skills, and Values and Attitudes strands.
2 Briefly describe how the project could contribute to the students’ achievement of the outcomes.
Part C: 25 marks
1 Plan and describe an inquiry learning project of the sort that primary school children could undertake to find out about the environmental problem you have chosen, and which addresses the relevant outcomes. Make sure that the project overall includes activities which cover all four of Jensen’s knowledge dimensions. Note that not all of Jensens’ dimensions need to be in all five parts of the inquiry learning project. For example it is unlikely that activities in the Tuning In phase will address Jensen’s knowledge of Change strategies.
In your descriptions of the activities in each phase of the Inquiry Learning Project justify your choices by referencing from the readings and WebLinks associated with this unit.
In this part you must cover clearly and specifically the following five parts of the inquiry learning model (described by Commonwealth of Australia, DEH National Environmental Education Statement 2005, p. 21).
I. How the students can “Tune In” to the issue.
•    Make sure you specify the target learning stage.
•    Describe one engaging stage-appropriate activity that could be used to Tune In the children to the problem you have chosen.
•    Which of Jensen’s’ knowledge dimensions are addressed by this activity?

II. How students could “Find out” about the problem.
•    Describe two or three specific activities that you would suggest or approve for students to undertake to Find Out about the environmental problem: What could they be doing? Where? Why? In what order?
•    In your description make sure you outline the sorts of pedagogical strategies you might use: e.g., experiments? Predict/Observe/Explain?  Surveys?
•    In your description make sure you outline the sort of data or information that students might collect, and detail how they might collect it. NB. Research from the internet, talks from other people etc is not enough here. Students need to collect some empirical information for themselves in at least one of these activities (e.g., count the number of thistles in a paddock, or test water quality etc).
•    Which of Jensen’s’ knowledge dimensions are addressed by each one of the activities in this phase?
III. How students could articulate and communicate their conclusions
•    Describe two or three activities through which students could come to conclusions based on the information they have gathered in the Finding Out phase, and articulate and communicate their conclusions to you and/or to fellow classmates.
•    In your description make sure you outline the ways that  students might express their understandings. How might they communicate them on paper? To each other? To you? (formally and informally)?
•    Which of Jensen’s’ knowledge dimensions are addressed by each one of the activities in this phase?
IV. How students could consider and (implement) social action
•    Outline two actions that the children could undertake (and that you would approve) which might contribute to addressing the environmental problem that they have been investigating. Some example actions could include:
•    Lobbying individuals or organizations (how? Who? About what? Individually or collectively?)
•    Adopting or changing some aspect of their ownbehaviour (specifically what? How?)
•    Implementing or participating in some local environmental remediation (individual, collective? e.g, planting trees, improving school grounds, erosion control works etc – see Jensen (2002) p. 327 for more examples).
•    In your description, briefly outline the advantages and potential impact of each of the actions and any ethical or practical difficulties that might be associated with them that might have to be resolved.
•    Which of Jensen’s’ knowledge dimensions are addressed by each one of the activities in this phase?
V. How students could be encouraged to reflect on and evaluate their actions [remember it is their ACTIONS they need to reflect on here]
•    Describe one activity that students could undertake after their actions to help them to think about the consequences and impact of their actions.
•    Which of Jensen’s knowledge dimensions are addressed by this activity?

Presentation of assignment: 5 marks
Please present your work according to the following headings and subheadings, and more or less to the suggested word length for each section. There is no need for an overarching introduction or conclusion. The word limit for this assignment is constrained for the specific purpose of encouraging you to write concisely. You must include the word count of your assignment on the front page (including everything except the copied & pasted outcome/content dot points).  Presentation, referencing, adherence to word limits and written communication accounts for the final 5 marks for this assignment.
Part    Mks    Heading/ subheading    Format    Approx. words
A    10    Name of the issue e.g., “Weed invasion”    Essay format    400
B    5    Learning objectives/ outcomes    Dot point list of outcomes/content & paragraph about how project will contribute (cut & paste dot points & codes are not included in word count)    100
C    25    Inquiry-learning project comprising sections below    Paragraphs describing and justifying the suggested activities under the 5 IL headings below. NO NEED for full lesson plans (you do this enough in other units).    1400
C.I         Tuning In         200
C.II         Finding Out         600
C.III         Drawing Conclusions         200
C.IV         Social action         300
C.V         Reflection & evaluation         100
D    #    References    APA    100

# References contribute to the 5 marks allocated under Presentation.
Requirements of the task
All sources of information that you use when preparing this assignment must be referenced according to the UNE guidelines for the APA Referencing System.
You will need to use and reference a range of sources of information. Although you may consult it as a starting point if you like, please do not use Wikipedia as a reference in this assignment. The WebLinks and recommended readings of this unit are current, relevant, reliable, and authoritative sources that you should use in preparing for this assignment.
The assignment needs to be substantially your work. It is absolutely fine to incorporate ideas for activities you may find from good quality, published teaching resources, as long as you describe the activities in enough detail to for me to understand them, and as long as you do not plagiarise. i.e., acknowledge the source of these activities and use your own words or clear direct quotations when describing them. This makes sense: there is no point reinventing wheels if resources are out there that you can use or adapt, and doing this is an efficient practice perfectly acceptable when you are teaching in school. It is not acceptable for this assignment, though, to present a whole range of activities all taken from the same unit of work you may have found published somewhere. In addition, you may NOT recycle/reuse work you are also doing for related units e.g. HSIE (this is also plagiarism).

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This assignment requires you to identify one SPECIFIC contemporary environmental problem in Australia and describe an inquiry learning project about that problem. The Inquiry Learning Project must be suitable for primary school children and relevant to the content and outcomes of the science and technology KLA.
Inquiry learning ideally needs to facilitate students’ ownership of decisions and choices as much as practicable. Therefore, when you are in the classroom you might prefer that individuals or groups choose their own issues to investigate. For the purposes of this assignment, though, you must specify the environmental problem.
Some examples of  environmental problems you could choose include (but are not limited to):
•    Water shortages
•    Salinity
•    Loss of biodiversity, land clearing, habitat loss
•    Climate change
•    Weed invasion
•    Feral animals
•    Fossil fuel consumption
•    Pollution (air, soil or water)
•    Waste disposal, litter
•    Erosion
Part A: 10 marks
Describe your chosen environmental problem.
1 Discuss the problem in general, saying why it is of general concern. You will need to thoroughly research and report on the issue, referencing the sources of your information in your work according to the UNE referencing guide.
2 Then discuss the local relevance of the problem in Armidale or your home town. In particular describe how it might be relevant to the experiences or understandings of primary school students, their families, school, or their local community?
Part B: 5 marks
1 Identify some learning objectives/outcomes that you could address with an inquiry learning project about this problem. Projects of this sort are highly relevant to learning outcomes across multiple Key Learning Areas (KLAs) and allow you to use precious teaching and learning time efficiently. However, for the purposes of this assignment (and because other relevant syllabuses especially HSIE are in such flux), and because this is a S&T unit, only learning objectives and outcomes from the following two sources need to be included.
a) NEW Science and Technology K-6 Syllabus. This is the Primary component of the new NSW Science K-10 syllabus based on the Australian Curriculum.
Identify at least one outcome from each of the Knowledge and Understandings, Skills, and Values and Attitudes domains. For each of the Knowledge and Understandings and Skills outcomes, identify at least one content ‘dot point’ relevant to the inquiry learning project (there is no content for the Values and Attitudes domain).  If you are not planning to teach in NSW and would prefer to use your own state/territory/country syllabus, feel free to do so. If you do use other syllabus documents, please select equivalent outcomes/content from your syllabus and include the title and URL of the relevant syllabus documents.
b) DET (2001) Environmental education policy for schools pp. 10-11 (Curriculum objectives). Identify at least one outcome from each of the Knowledge and Understandings, Skills, and Values and Attitudes strands.
2 Briefly describe how the project could contribute to the students’ achievement of the outcomes.
Part C: 25 marks
1 Plan and describe an inquiry learning project of the sort that primary school children could undertake to find out about the environmental problem you have chosen, and which addresses the relevant outcomes. Make sure that the project overall includes activities which cover all four of Jensen’s knowledge dimensions. Note that not all of Jensens’ dimensions need to be in all five parts of the inquiry learning project. For example it is unlikely that activities in the Tuning In phase will address Jensen’s knowledge of Change strategies.
In your descriptions of the activities in each phase of the Inquiry Learning Project justify your choices by referencing from the readings and WebLinks associated with this unit.
In this part you must cover clearly and specifically the following five parts of the inquiry learning model (described by Commonwealth of Australia, DEH National Environmental Education Statement 2005, p. 21).
I. How the students can “Tune In” to the issue.
•    Make sure you specify the target learning stage.
•    Describe one engaging stage-appropriate activity that could be used to Tune In the children to the problem you have chosen.
•    Which of Jensen’s’ knowledge dimensions are addressed by this activity?

II. How students could “Find out” about the problem.
•    Describe two or three specific activities that you would suggest or approve for students to undertake to Find Out about the environmental problem: What could they be doing? Where? Why? In what order?
•    In your description make sure you outline the sorts of pedagogical strategies you might use: e.g., experiments? Predict/Observe/Explain?  Surveys?
•    In your description make sure you outline the sort of data or information that students might collect, and detail how they might collect it. NB. Research from the internet, talks from other people etc is not enough here. Students need to collect some empirical information for themselves in at least one of these activities (e.g., count the number of thistles in a paddock, or test water quality etc).
•    Which of Jensen’s’ knowledge dimensions are addressed by each one of the activities in this phase?
III. How students could articulate and communicate their conclusions
•    Describe two or three activities through which students could come to conclusions based on the information they have gathered in the Finding Out phase, and articulate and communicate their conclusions to you and/or to fellow classmates.
•    In your description make sure you outline the ways that  students might express their understandings. How might they communicate them on paper? To each other? To you? (formally and informally)?
•    Which of Jensen’s’ knowledge dimensions are addressed by each one of the activities in this phase?
IV. How students could consider and (implement) social action
•    Outline two actions that the children could undertake (and that you would approve) which might contribute to addressing the environmental problem that they have been investigating. Some example actions could include:
•    Lobbying individuals or organizations (how? Who? About what? Individually or collectively?)
•    Adopting or changing some aspect of their ownbehaviour (specifically what? How?)
•    Implementing or participating in some local environmental remediation (individual, collective? e.g, planting trees, improving school grounds, erosion control works etc – see Jensen (2002) p. 327 for more examples).
•    In your description, briefly outline the advantages and potential impact of each of the actions and any ethical or practical difficulties that might be associated with them that might have to be resolved.
•    Which of Jensen’s’ knowledge dimensions are addressed by each one of the activities in this phase?
V. How students could be encouraged to reflect on and evaluate their actions [remember it is their ACTIONS they need to reflect on here]
•    Describe one activity that students could undertake after their actions to help them to think about the consequences and impact of their actions.
•    Which of Jensen’s knowledge dimensions are addressed by this activity?

Presentation of assignment: 5 marks
Please present your work according to the following headings and subheadings, and more or less to the suggested word length for each section. There is no need for an overarching introduction or conclusion. The word limit for this assignment is constrained for the specific purpose of encouraging you to write concisely. You must include the word count of your assignment on the front page (including everything except the copied & pasted outcome/content dot points).  Presentation, referencing, adherence to word limits and written communication accounts for the final 5 marks for this assignment.
Part    Mks    Heading/ subheading    Format    Approx. words
A    10    Name of the issue e.g., “Weed invasion”    Essay format    400
B    5    Learning objectives/ outcomes    Dot point list of outcomes/content & paragraph about how project will contribute (cut & paste dot points & codes are not included in word count)    100
C    25    Inquiry-learning project comprising sections below    Paragraphs describing and justifying the suggested activities under the 5 IL headings below. NO NEED for full lesson plans (you do this enough in other units).    1400
C.I         Tuning In         200
C.II         Finding Out         600
C.III         Drawing Conclusions         200
C.IV         Social action         300
C.V         Reflection & evaluation         100
D    #    References    APA    100

# References contribute to the 5 marks allocated under Presentation.
Requirements of the task
All sources of information that you use when preparing this assignment must be referenced according to the UNE guidelines for the APA Referencing System.
You will need to use and reference a range of sources of information. Although you may consult it as a starting point if you like, please do not use Wikipedia as a reference in this assignment. The WebLinks and recommended readings of this unit are current, relevant, reliable, and authoritative sources that you should use in preparing for this assignment.
The assignment needs to be substantially your work. It is absolutely fine to incorporate ideas for activities you may find from good quality, published teaching resources, as long as you describe the activities in enough detail to for me to understand them, and as long as you do not plagiarise. i.e., acknowledge the source of these activities and use your own words or clear direct quotations when describing them. This makes sense: there is no point reinventing wheels if resources are out there that you can use or adapt, and doing this is an efficient practice perfectly acceptable when you are teaching in school. It is not acceptable for this assignment, though, to present a whole range of activities all taken from the same unit of work you may have found published somewhere. In addition, you may NOT recycle/reuse work you are also doing for related units e.g. HSIE (this is also plagiarism).

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Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *