The History of Scottish Forests

In this unit we will be looking back at the history of Scottish forests, looking first at the ways in which the trees first populated Scotland after the last ice age. From there we will look at events which have impacted upon forest populations before looking at how the forests of today are used now. Pupils will be encouraged to research topics of interest. The main focus of this unit will be climate change and how this will effect our forests. This unit will also deal with a theoretical situation in which the ice has melted from the polar ice caps and places such as Greenland.

Download the poster here (pdf, 806KB).

Carbon Capture Toy Design

Focusing on carbon capture in this unit of work the learners will adapt a “wood is good” approach and understand that trees take in CO2 and trap the carbon content within it. Through IDL the learners will explore the carbon content within different types of wood. By calculating the carbon content plus the hours spent on an electrical device the leherearners can work out how much Sitka spruce will be needed to trap their carbon emissions for one week.

The unit aims to promote outdoor learning and so the learners must produce a toy which can be used outdoors. The learners will gain an understanding of carbon capture, carbon footprint, climate change and sustainability, all the while learning the work of a designer and increasing their woodworking skills.

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When wood is the only answer

Wood is a renewable resource, economical and a very strong building material. This knowledge should be used in the context of developing our own community for the future. Wood is a store of carbon and it reduces the greenhouse effect by removing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.

This is an S3/S4 Project which uses cross-curricular skills to construct a model vision of the local community’s integral public use buildings. The only prerequisite is that the principal construction material is wood.

Download the poster here (pdf, 368KB).

Sustainability – Awareness and Action

Throughout Earth’s history its development has been dictated by natural occurrences, even where these events have been destructive. However, particularly since the Industrial Revolution Humanity’s negative impact on the environment such as through the release of greenhouse gases has been steadily increasing. With the worldwide population now having exceeded 7 billion, it is estimated that on average each person worldwide uses the equivalent resources of 3.5 Earths whilst every person in the UK uses the equivalent of 1.5 Earths. With the population worldwide set to increase over the next few decades the current situation is unsustainable and must be addressed. This unit aims to introduce sustainability over the course of a total of 12 lessons and assumes that participants have little knowledge of climate change. The awareness of climate change and its associated issues will be built-up throughout the unit leading to the opportunity for pupils to present their findings, etc. Elements of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics are present to varying degrees throughout the proposed lessons and are designed to be flexible should new content be introduced. The tasks also have a multitude of learning opportunities, including: group work, communication development via presentations & discussions, guided research tasks and practical activities. Transferable skills are also developed with links made to engineering and the chance to plan a conservation project offered. The Curriculum for Excellence encourages outdoor learning, the promotion of sustainability and multidisciplinary learning and this unit aims to meet these criteria.

Download the poster here (pdf, 615KB).

Mighty Machines to Little Lego

Investigating Sustainable Forestry with Lego Mindstorm Robots

This unit of work shows the benefits and principles of sustainable reforestation through situational outdoor learning which is reinforced by a robotic simulation. It aims to provide an engaging and meaningful engineering project to S3 learners. It has been built around the Third and Fourth Levels of Curriculum for Excellence to create a STEM orientated unit for Broad General Education. The unit draws on influences from Design Technology, Science and Maths resulting in a fully integrated interdisciplinary project.

You can download the poster for this unit here (pdf, 2MB).

A Bat-tastic Journey

Bats are the theme of this unit of work and which is aimed towards pupils in Secondary school education as part of their CfE 3rd / 4th level broad general education and developed in partnership with various external enterprises. The contextual theme for the unit is based around an authentic scenario of bats; the protection of them and their habitats; environmental impacts; bat roost construction; and outdoor learning.
Presenting the unit within an authentic context is derived from Situated Learning theory, where authenticity brings a coherent, personally meaningful and purpose to the unit of work whilst set within a social framework. This will promote pupils motivation, interest, engagement and cognitive learning. Continue reading “A Bat-tastic Journey”