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Collection of Reviewed Teaching Resources

A plastic world: Perils of Plastic

Subject taught
- Chemistry

Link
https://www.nationalgeographic.org/activity/perils-plastic/

Type of Product
- Articles
- Videos

Language Skills Developed
- Interaction
- Listening
- Reading
- Speaking
- Writing

Transferable/Scientific Skills Developed
Students will develop note-taking, communication skills, self-motivation, analytical skills, critical thinking skills, problem-solving skills.

Description
General aims
Students will be given new insights into the phenomenon, examine its effects and provide solutions. They will be able to explain the phenomenon and provide solutions. They will acquire the basic English vocabulary connected with the topic (plastic waste). Students will develop positive learning habits (organisational and ecological and problem-solving skills).
Linguistic aims
Students will be able to:
- read English texts with ease
- reflect on their reading experience and share it with their peers
- get the main ideas from a text
- comprehend the topic correctly
- translate words connected with the topic (greenhouse effect) from English into their mother tongue.
Subject specific aims
Students will be able to:
- explain the phenomenon, its causes and effects
- provide solutions to related problems in their context
- act pro-socially and prevent the phenomenon
Target groups age:
Students from high school 16-18+ years old. What is more, this web site can be used by anyone who wants to do extend knowledge about the perils of plastic.
Level of competence in English (CEFR)
B1+/B2
Time required to use the resource with the students: 1 or 2 hours

How to use it
The teacher will raise students’ awareness about the perils of plastic. Students learn about the world’s largest “landfill,” make a connection to their own lives, and calculate how much garbage they generate in a week, a year, and ten years. At first students are asked to comment on a photo (related to throwing tons of packaging carelessly into waters- seas, oceans or rivers). The teacher explains what happens to plastic once thrown away and presents the Great Pacific Garbage Patch to students (the map of the Great Pacific Garbage Patch). Students are asked to read about the garbage patches (https://www.nationalgeographic.org/encyclopedia/great-pacific-garbage-patch/) and take notes on the following issues: location, formation, perils and solutions. Students can use the embedded dictionary. Class discussion follows where new vocabulary is also highlighted and explained. To raise students’ awareness about the perils that plastic poses the teacher invites students to embark on a week-long activity. Thus students are going to collect their plastic garbage for a week and set up an area at home/classroom for collection. After a week students measure and weigh the garbage they produced and collected. They have to calculate how much garbage they produced or would produce in one week/ one year/ ten years. The teacher asks students to reflect on their findings: Why is plastic harmful to the environment? What would be the solution? What could people do to produce less garbage?
Follow up- students can listen to and put down new issues about the discussed points. https://oceanservice.noaa.gov/podcast/june14/mw126-garbagepatch.html
• Possible difficulties for the students
Students who have poor knowledge of English can have problems with understanding the content.

Comments
The strengths of the web site lie in the clarity of explanations, photographs, embedded dictionary. There are: - clear accessible explanations - embedded dictionary with clear and easy explanations - examples illustrated by pictures - a guided step by step experience students can embark on This web site is scientifically reliable and can be recommended to students. it is well-organised and accessible. The layout highlights the most important points. Its embedded dictionary facilitates understanding so when students come across words they do not know they can click on the work and have it clarified. The resources can be used as support for a range of learning activities (self- study, project work).

Related Video Lessons

Our Plastic World