Planning a model catchment basin
This activity provides opportunities for students to integrate their knowledge about the applications of science in relation to the needs and views of society.
- prepare a scenario that represents good catchment management practice
- analyse how community attitudes and knowledge might influence decisions about the applications of science
- describe how integrated catchment management might influence community knowledge and attitudes, and decisions about the applications of science.
Science and Society
4.3 Students present analyses of the short- and long-term effects of some of the ways in which science is used.
5.3 Students analyse the relationship between social attitudes and decisions about the applications of science.
6.3 Students use scientific concepts to evaluate the costs and benefits of applications of science (including agricultural and industrial practices).
Earth and Beyond
5.3 Students prepare scenarios about the use of renewable and non-renewable resources of the earth and beyond.
The following different copies of Everyone lives in a catchment:
- A copy for individual students or groups on half of an A3 sheet of paper of the poor side of Everyone lives in a catchment without the text (PDF, 888K)*;
- Copies for individual students or groups of both sides of Everyone lives in a catchment (PDF, 665K)* on separate A4 sheets of paper.
- felt pens, colouring pencils
Student resource sheets
- Photocopy the ‘poor’ side of Everyone lives in a catchment without text on half of an A3 sheet of paper so that students can complete the ‘good’ side of the diagram.
- Photocopy the ‘good’ and ‘poor’ sides of the poster with text on separate A4 sheets.
Although the poster definitely targets particular catchment issues, the task is open-ended and students may incorporate a whole range of management strategies that have not been included in the ‘good management’ side of the poster. These could include providing sediment control on a building site, for instance.
Time: 60 minutes
- Preparing scenarios
- Applying ideas and concepts
- Formulating and elaborating ideas
Working in groups or individually, students spend about 30 minutes drawing a mirror image of the catchment diagram on the A3 sheet, including features that would indicate good management strategies. They can then discuss their ideas with the class. Using the text from the ‘poor’ side of the poster, students add any issues they may have missed.
Students then compare the ‘good’ and ‘poor’ catchment management diagrams. Many applications of science are shown in the activities on the two sides of the poster. Students describe how community attitudes might influence decisions that are made about the applications of science. In other words, what types of attitudes or knowledge in the community might have led to the types of decisions on each side of the poster?
Students list all the people in the community who would be involved in creating a ‘good’ catchment. Using the text from the ‘good catchment’ side of the poster, students can add to their poster or to their list of community stakeholders. Students write two paragraphs explaining how these community members could coordinate their catchment management strategies. This process, where stakeholders in the community work together to solve catchment management problems, is called integrated catchment management. Students then describe how this process might influence community knowledge and attitudes, and decisions about the applications of science.
Gathering information about student learning
Sources of information could include:
- students’ posters, lists and responses
- anecdotal notes about students’ contributions to discussions
* Requires Adobe Reader
Last updated 2 August 2010