Students will calculate an estimate of their personal

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Students will calculate an estimate of their personal carbon footprint and compare it to the national average of others similar to them. They will design a short-term action plan for decreasing their carbon footprint, and present to their peers for feedback. Plans will be refined and students will implement their short- term plan for 10 days, documenting their experience. At the completion of their short-term plan, students will write a reflective essay about their experiences and the connections they see to the human impact (specifically of Americans) and the sustainability of the world. Internet research and an online carbon footprint calculator will be necessary to complete this project so that students can provide significant evidence for the claims they make and ideas they present in their reflections. Students will create a visual representation of their experiences to be presented to the class. Biology Standards: HS-LS2.7: Design, evaluate, and refine a solution for reducing negative impact of human activities on the environment and ways to sustain biodiversity and maintain the planet’s natural capital. Short-Term Action Plan : After using an online simulation to estimate each student’s carbon footprint in class, students will research various practical solutions and devise two plans they can implement (and get the rest of their household to do if it impacts the entire family unit) for a 10-day period in their household. Students will need to provide a rationale for why this solution will be effective in decreasing their carbon footprint, a list of any materials or costs associated with the change, and a list of any considerations that may have to be made in order for it to be possible. The student must also describe what sorts of artifacts they will collect during the implementation and what sort of presentation they will create to be representative of their experience. These plans will be presented to their peers and the teacher for review and suggestions. Students will be required to take this feedback and refine their plans. Both the original plan and the refined plan, with changes highlighted, will be submitted with the final project. Visual Representation: Students may use any mode to present their findings (poster board, scrapbook, Power Point, video, etc.) but students must include artifacts to illustrate their experience. Artifacts must include a timeline of observations for all 10 days, and 5 other artifacts which may include graphs and/or tables of their calculated carbon footprint and predicted change post-implementation of their action plans, pictures of changes made in their home, receipts, power bills, quotes from family members involved, or anything else that visually represents the changes made.
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