FROM THE GROUND UP
Volume 22 Number 6
With the participation of groups such as Environment Canada, Manitoba Education and Training (Curriculum Services), and Agriculture Canada, Green & Growing Educational Products presents a video accompanied by a teacher's guide on sustain-able development. From the Ground Up examines the topic of sustainable development in food and agriculture. With sustainable development now a required curriculum standard in Canada, current, national-based material such as this video and guide is essential in the presentation of this issue to students.
The teacher's guide is divided into five lessons, on the history of agriculture, soil erosion and crop nutrition, and chemicals and agriculture. The lessons are designed to stimulate discussion of agricultural practices within the relationship of sustainable development. Each lesson contains objectives, focusing questions, and a variety of student-based activities. A glossary of terms, a bibliography and a resource guide are also provided.The lessons were designed for high school use but the video itself, with some suggestions from the guide, could serve as an introduction to the topic of sustainable development and agriculture in the upper elementary grades and in junior high. The video is congruent with Senior 2 Social Studies (in Manitoba) and is also relevant for senior home economics and senior science.
From the Ground Up offers students an opportunity to grasp a better understanding of the issue of sustainable development and agriculture through its use of and frequent reference to the Sustainable Development Model. It uses the Manitoba Education and Training definition, which incorporates the concept that this is "a process of decision making." This approach allows for active rather than passive interaction on the part of the viewers. By showing two current (and different) approaches to farming, the video allows students to analyze for themselves the relationship between the environment, the economy and the health of society. Following the viewing of the video, the ensuing discussion can assist the students in the decision-making process.
From the Ground Up would be a useful supplement to the curriculum issue of sustainable development and would generate discussion among young people on topics such as food production, consumer influence and marketing practices.
Janice Foster is a teacher-librarian/enrichment facilitator at Oakenwald School (Fort Carry) in Winnipeg, Manitoba
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