Estimated Time: 100 minutes
Students will be introduced to various natural resources associated with the economy in specific provinces. Through an understanding of these Canada and World Connections, students will investigate the environmental impact of human behaviour on these industries. In this lesson, students will focus on a specific issue and create a media text to encouraged readers to protect the natural environment or face specific consequences.
Connections to Financial Literacy
Expectations in which explicit connections can be made to financial literacy are found in the Media Literacy strand. Through learning to recognize overt and implied messages in advertising and other media texts, students can develop the critical thinking skills that they need as consumers. Expectations in the Oral Communication, Reading, and Writing strands, which develop students’ thinking skills and self-awareness, also provide opportunities for developing financial literacy.
3. Creating Media Texts
- 3.2 identify an appropriate form to suit the specific purpose and audience for a media text they plan to create
Canada and World Connections
- identify and describe a cause-and-effect relationship between the environment and the economy in a province or territory (e.g., overfishing on the Grand Banks; changes to landscape resulting from open-pit mining or clear-cut logging)
By the end of this lesson, students will be able to
- identify the natural resources and environmental industries in different provinces in Canada
- understand the relationship between those industries and the people living in those provinces
- identify the effects of human impact (positive and negative) on the environment and on the industries that use that natural resource
- create a media text to encourage readers to protect the environment in those industries
Instructional Components and Context
Students are encouraged to have a previous understanding of the political regions in Canada (i.e. can identify the provinces, territories and capitals cities). They should have begun to explore the physical regions in Canada in order to connect this understanding to the economies in these regions. Students should have prior experience creating media texts for a purpose and be able to identify which forms and techniques are most effective for creating a message.
Physical regions (e.g. Canadian Shield, Appalachians, Hudson Bay lowlands, Arctic lowlands, Great Lakes–St. Lawrence lowlands, interior plains, cordilleras)
Map of Canada
Computer with overhead projector
Poster paper and colouring materials
Props related to natural industries (e.g. paper products, lobster, coal, etc.) Pictures of these items are also useful if props are unavailable.
BLM #1 Identifying Impact of Industry
BLM #2 Success Criteria for Media Text
Whole Class/Pairs > Examining Provincial Industry and Economy
Introduce the whole class to Canada’s Natural Resources through the introduction of the props. Display the first prop (or picture-see materials). Ask the students to identify the product and the product source. Prompt: Where in Canada might this resource come from? Ask students to identify where the resource can be found on the posted map of Canada. Students should pay particular attention to the geographical location of each resource (e.g. the fishing industry in Newfoundland, the forestry industry in British Columbia, and the mining industry in Saskatchewan and Manitoba) by identifying the province on the map of Canada.
See link for further information on fishing in Canada:
See link for further information on mining in Canada:
See link for further information on forestry in Canada:
Ask students to consider how these industries would affect the people living in those provinces. Prompt: How might the fishing industry in Newfoundland affect the people who live there? Instruct students to discuss with an elbow partner how they feel this industry would impact the people living in the associated area. Invite students to share their ideas with the class, following the discussion.
Connections: Invite students to review their prior understanding of geographical maps by providing opportunities to identify the location of the provinces and territories as well as various industries and their features specific to that land region. Remind students that they will now apply their understanding of industry and the relationship between industry and the people living in the area in the forthcoming Action portion of the lesson.
Differentiation: Provide students the option, if needed, to write ideas independently or quickly sketch pictures of how that particular industry affects people in addition to or instead of discussion. Remind students that little detail is required should they choose to sketch their responses.
Assessment for learning: Anecdotal notes are encouraged in order to record and identify students experiencing difficulty understanding key terminology or the relationship. Teacher guidance and feedback with explanations will support student learning during the next activity.
Small Group > Identifying the Impact on the Environment and the Economy
Organize the class into small groups of approximately 3-4 students. Provide groups with a specific industry previously introduced (e.g. fishing, forestry or mining). Hand out chart paper and markers to each group. Instruct students to create a list of ways they think the use of that natural resource as an industry affects the environment and the economy. Students should consider jobs, products, animals and other parts of the community that could be affected in either a negative or positive way. Ask each group to share their ideas. Students should begin to identify that these types of industries create many jobs and products for both people locally and through trades. They should also recognize that selling natural resources for profit often has an impact on the environment and the ecosystems within that environment.
After each group has shared, ask students to consider what happens when people take advantage of natural resources for economic purposes.
Key Questions for Discussion:
What happens when people use too much of a natural resource?
How might the environment be affected by the constant use of that natural resource?
What would happen to the industries that rely on that product if, that natural resource no longer existed?
Who would be impacted by the depletion of that natural resource?
Following the discussion, indicate to students that they are going to observe different video clips that show ways that industries are now protecting their natural resources. Following each clip, have students outline the key points of the issues and record this on the board.
Mining: Green Mining Initiative Video: http://www.nrcan.gc.ca/mms-smm/high-poin/20110401-eng.htm
Forestry: Greenpeace; the Story of the Great Bear Rainforest
Fishing: Overfishing Public Service Announcement (PSA):
World Wildlife Federation Video:
Connections: Lists should remain posted in the classroom for students to refer to. For clarification, some lists may need to be revised or have ideas edited following class discussion and before posting.
Additional information on Canada’s natural resources can be found on the Government of Canada’s Natural Resources page at: http://www.nrcan.gc.ca/com/index-eng.php
Differentiation: Allow students adequate time to have dialogue before recording their ideas. Some students may need to work independently or in pairs during the recording of lists activity. Students who experience difficulty with written communication can contribute their ideas orally in the group and another student can scribe their ideas to the list.
Assessment as learning: During the sharing of the collaborative lists, students should give each other peer feedback, identifying strengths and areas for consideration in their lists. Prior to discussion, co-create a success criteria checklist on the board with students. Highlight what makes an effective list for students to reference during the feedback portion of this lesson.
Assessment for learning: Use a checklist (see BLM #1 Identifying Impact of Industry) to record which groups could identify the affects of these industries.
Individual > Creating Media for Canadians to Protect Canada’s Natural Environment
Students will apply their understanding of the impact of overuse of natural resources to create a media text that communicates the necessity of human protection. Indicate to students that they will have the opportunity to create a media text that conveys an important message about the protection of one of Canada’s natural resources. Ask students to identify one of the topics previously discussed and indicate through their choice in media, what should be done to protect the environment. They should also indicate in their media text the consequence of overuse, and what will happen if the message indicated by the students media text is not followed. Post the success criteria checklist before students begin their work (see BLM #2 Success Criteria for Media Text).
Connections: Ask students to refer to their previous learning in the lesson and select a topic of interest to them (e.g. overfishing, deforestation, or the mining environment). They will use the information from class activities, discussion and video clip observation to create their media text. Further research opportunities should be provided if required.
Differentiation: Students will have the opportunity to self-select the type of media they would like to create. Some students may choose to make a poster, while others may choose to make an iMovie; the outcomes for both will be the same. Openness to other representations (student’s own ideas) to communicate the same message as outlined in the success criteria is essential.
Assessment of Learning: The students’ media text will be evaluated using a success criteria checklist (see BLM #2 Success Criteria for Media Text). You may choose to formulate the criteria into a rubric, or other form suitable for evaluation.