Activity Introduction

Vegetable GardenQuick summary: In this lesson, students explore what it means to be a consumer and how the choices they make as a consumer can impact people, animals and the environment. They begin by developing their understanding of needs and wants and evaluating what things people really need. They then explore the impact of the consumption of a range of products on other people, animals and the environment.

This lesson can be implemented as a stand alone lesson; however to strengthen understanding of these concepts and inspire student action it is best taught as a component of the Roots and Shoots Upper Primary unit of work.

Jane Goodall's Roots and ShootsThis lesson has been developed in partnership with Jane Goodall’s Roots & Shoots program. Roots & Shoots is a global youth-led program of young people taking action to improve our world. By participating in this lesson, you and your students will be joining thousands of young people and teachers working to make positive change in our world.

Learning intentions:

  • Students reflect on the choices they make as consumers.
  • Students identify needs and wants in their lives.
  • Students recognise that most resources are finite. 
  • Students evaluate consumer products and recognise that their choices impact other people, animals and the environment.

21st century skills: 

Australian Curriculum Mapping

Content descriptions: 

Year 3 Science

  • Science involves making predictions and describing patterns and relationships (ACSHE050)
  • Science knowledge helps people to understand the effect of their actions (ACSHE051)

Year 4 Science

  • Living things depend on each other and the environment to survive (ACSSU073)
  • Natural and processed materials have a range of physical properties that can influence their use (ACSSU074)
  • Earth’s surface changes over time as a result of natural processes and human activity (ACSSU075)
  • Science knowledge helps people to understand the effect of their actions (ACSHE062)

Year 5 Science

  • Scientific knowledge is used to solve problems and inform personal and community decisions (ACSHE083)

Year 6 Science

  • The growth and survival of living things are affected by physical conditions of their environment (ACSSU094)
  • Changes to materials can be reversible or irreversible (ACSSU095)

Year 3 HASS

  • Pose questions to investigate people, events, places and issues (ACHASSI052)
  • Locate and collect information and data from different sources, including observations (ACHASSI053)
  • Draw simple conclusions based on analysis of information and data (ACHASSI058)
  • Interact with others with respect to share points of view (ACHASSI059)
  • Reflect on learning to propose actions in response to an issue or challenge and consider possible effects of proposed actions (ACHASSI060)
  • Why people participate within communities and how students can actively participate and contribute (ACHASSK072)

Year 4 HASS

  • Pose questions to investigate people, events, places and issues (ACHASSI073)
  • Locate and collect information and data from different sources, including observations (ACHASSI074)
  • Draw simple conclusions based on analysis of information and data (ACHASSI079)
  • Interact with others with respect to share points of view (ACHASSI080)
  • Reflect on learning to propose actions in response to an issue or challenge and consider possible effects of proposed actions (ACHASSI081)
  • The importance of environments, including natural vegetation, to animals and people (ACHASSK088)
  • The use and management of natural resources and waste, and the different views on how to do this sustainably (ACHASSK090)

Year 5 HASS

  • Work in groups to generate responses to issues and challenges (ACHASSI102)
  • Reflect on learning to propose personal and/or collective action in response to an issue or challenge, and predict the probable effects (ACHASSI104)
  • The influence of people, including Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples, on the environmental characteristics of Australian places (ACHASSK112)
  • The environmental and human influences on the location and characteristics of a place and the management of spaces within them (ACHASSK113)
  • The difference between needs and wants and why choices need to be made about how limited resources are used (ACHASSK119)
  • Types of resources (natural, human, capital) and the ways societies use them to satisfy the needs and wants of present and future generations (ACHASSK120)
  • Influences on consumer choices and methods that can be used to help make informed personal consumer and financial choices (ACHASSK121)

Year 6 HASS

  • Work in groups to generate responses to issues and challenges (ACHASSI130)
  • Reflect on learning to propose personal and/or collective action in response to an issue or challenge, and predict the probable effects (ACHASSI132)
  • The effect that consumer and financial decisions can have on the individual, the broader community and the environment (ACHASSK150)

Syllabus outcomes: ST2-4WS, ST2-13MW, ST2-8ES, ST3-10LW, ST2-11LW, ST3-7PWGE2-4, GE3-4, GE3-2, GE3-3

General capabilities: Literacy, Critical and Creative Thinking, Personal and Social Capability, Ethical Understanding

Cross-curriculum priority: Sustainability

Relevant parts of Science achievement standards: 

Year 3 – Students use their understanding of the movement of Earth, materials and the behaviour of heat to suggest explanations for everyday observations. They group living things based on observable features and distinguish them from non-living things. They describe how they can use science investigations to respond to questions.

Year 4 – Students apply the observable properties of materials to explain how objects and materials can be used. They discuss how natural processes and human activity cause changes to Earth’s surface. They describe relationships that assist the survival of living things and sequence key stages in the life cycle of a plant or animal. They identify when science is used to understand the effect of their actions.

Year 5 – Students discuss how scientific developments have affected people’s lives, help us solve problems and how science knowledge develops from many people’s contributions.

Year 6 – They explain how natural events cause rapid change to Earth’s surface. They describe and predict the effect of environmental changes on individual living things. Students explain how scientific knowledge helps us to solve problems and inform decisions and identify historical and cultural contributions.

Relevant parts of HASS achievement standards: 

Year 3 – They explain how and why people participate in and contribute to their communities. They examine information to identify a point of view and interpret data to identify and describe simple distributions. They draw simple conclusions and share their views on an issue.

Year 4 – Students recognise the significance of events in bringing about change and the importance of the environment. Students identify the interconnections between components of the environment and between people and the environment. They locate and collect information and data from different sources, including observations to answer these questions. They share their points of view, respecting the views of others. They reflect on their learning to propose action in response to an issue or challenge, and identify the possible effects of their proposed action.

Year 5 – Students describe the significance of people and events/developments in bringing about change. They identify and describe the interconnections between people and the human and environmental characteristics of places, and between components of environments. They identify the effects of these interconnections on the characteristics of places and environments. They recognise that choices need to be made when allocating resources. They describe factors that influence their choices as consumers and identify strategies that can be used to inform these choices. They describe different views on how to respond to an issue or challenge.

Year 6 – They explain how natural events cause rapid change to Earth’s surface. They describe and predict the effect of environmental changes on individual living things. Students explain how scientific knowledge helps us to solve problems and inform decisions and identify historical and cultural contributions.

Topic: Sustainability, Waste, Consumption, Climate Change

Unit of work: Roots and Shoots – Upper Primary

Time required: 60 mins.

Level of teacher scaffolding: Medium – support students to understand the impact of purchasing particular products and assist them to reflect on their own habits and consumer choices.

Resources required:  Diamond 9 Worksheet, Shopping Bag Items, Product Evaluation Worksheet, Me As A Consumer Reflection.

Keywords: World, Earth, resources, community, environment, sustainability, finite, natural, managed, constructed, animals, people, natural disaster, action, choice, consumer, impact, consequence, Jane Goodall, Roots and Shoots.

Cool Australia’s curriculum team continually reviews and refines our resources to be in line with changes to the Australian Curriculum.

Worksheets

Teacher Worksheet

Teacher Preparation

Learning intentions:

  • Students reflect on the choices they make as consumers.
  • Students identify needs and wants in their lives.
  • Students recognise that most resources are finite. 
  • Students evaluate consumer products and recognise that their choices impact other people, animals and the environment.

Success criteria: Students can…

  • … distinguish between needs and wants.
  • … explain the impact of the production of various items on other people, animals and the environment.
  • … identify choices they can make to protect other people, animals and the environment.
  • ... work with others to discuss and work through complex problems. 

Teacher content information: At the age of 26 Jane Goodall travelled to Gombe Stream National Park (in what is now Tanzania) to study the mysterious world of wild chimpanzees. Through her patience and persistence, she won the trust of the chimpanzees and was able to learn more about our closest living relatives than anyone

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