Lesson Transformed: World Geography

This is the eleventh lesson in the series, Lesson Transformed, in which traditional lessons are transformed into engaging experiences for students which exemplify the premises of the Visioning Document.

Lesson #11

Topic: Technology and Agriculture

Course: World Geography

Content Area: Social Studies


Traditional Lesson

Objective: The students will be able to examine the environmental, economic, and social impacts of advances in technology on agriculture and natural resources.

Materials: One set of Environmental, Economic, and Social Impacts: Brainstorm per student, chart paper, markers

Warm Up: Divide the class into three groups and assign each group one of the following: environmental impacts, economic impacts, or social impacts.  

Using the Brainstorm guide linked below, each group should discuss the positive and negative impacts of advances in technology on agriculture and natural resources for their assigned topic.

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link to access

Then, each group should organize their positive and negative impacts onto chart paper and hang them around the room for a gallery walk.

Gallery Walk and Discussion: In a gallery walk format, students should rotate around the room, making notes of positive and negative impacts of advances in technology on agriculture and natural resources on their own Brainstorm notes pages.

Using information about Agriculture Technology from the United States Department of Agriculture website, the teacher should lead a whole class discussion on agriculture technology present in modern farms.

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link to access

 

Exit Ticket: Using the infographic from the United States Department of Agriculture, Agriculture Marketing Service, students consider the perspective of the local farmer.  Students should write 3 things that modern local farmers are doing as a result of advances in technology and how these have impacted their work environmentally, economically, and socially.

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link to access

 


Transformed Lesson

Objective: The students will be able to create evidence of understanding of the impact of technology and human modifications on the physical environment by examining the environmental, economic, and social impacts of advances in technology on agriculture and natural resources.

Materials: One set of Environmental, Economic, and Social Impacts: Brainstorm per student, blank paper for 3…2…1… notes per student

Background Information: Pose these questions to the students: Did you know more than 90 percent of farms in the U.S. are classified as small, with a gross cash farm income of $250,000, or less?  How does this impact you when you go to the grocery store or farmer’s market?  

Students gain perspective of Agriculture Safety, Agriculture Technology, Farmer Education, Organic Agriculture, Small and Family Farms, and Sustainable Agriculture by reviewing the United States Department of Agriculture, National Institute of Food and Agriculture website.  

When reviewing the information on the website, students should make notes in a 3…2…1… format:

  • 3 things that they found surprising
  • 2 things that challenged what they knew
  • 1 thing they need more information
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link to access

Real World Relevance: Using Nepris, the teacher will connect students to industry experts.  The students should bring their knowledge gained from the Background Information stage of the lesson to pose questions and interact with agriculture experts.

 

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link to access

*Note: Opportunities to connect with industry experts such as this is provides equitable access to authentic, real-world content.  The interactivity of the video conversation with the experts provides responsive learning based on the needs of the students.  Rather than gaining knowledge from a static textbook, the dynamic nature of the interaction is suitable to the needs of the students and class.

During the Nepris conversation, students should use the Environmental, Economic, and Social Impacts: Brainstorm pages, to make notes of environmental, economic, and social impacts of advances in technology on agriculture and natural resources.

Create: Using an infographic creation tool such as Piktochart or Canva, or a video tool such as iMovie, students create a Public Service Announcement (PSA) to tell the story of farmers and professional agriculture companies and the environmental, economic, and social impacts of advances in technology on agriculture and natural resources.

The teacher may utilize QR codes or encourage students to post their work to their blogs in order to promote a greater audience for their creations.

*Note: The opportunity for students to create a visualization of their understanding for a greater audience promotes purpose and impact of the students’ work.


It is the goal of this blog series to equip teachers with skills to transfer understanding and transform their own lesson design.

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