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Architecture For Humanity Classroom Competition 2009
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Architecture For Humanity Classroom Competition 2009


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These illustrative Architecture for Humanity Design Competition boards were produced by the University of Colorado at Boulder Environmental Design Team during Maymester 2009. Design ideas were derived …

These illustrative Architecture for Humanity Design Competition boards were produced by the University of Colorado at Boulder Environmental Design Team during Maymester 2009. Design ideas were derived after months of collaboration and brainstorming with Casey Middle School students. We will be providing Casey MS with final rendered boards for their school to post. Our goal is to create a Sustainable & Educational Environmental Design (SEED) building for Boulder Valley School District to use as a model for environmental education and design. Images have been uploaded to and will be judged over then next month. If we win, Casey will receive $50,000 to build this modular classroom.

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  • 1. Collaboration with Casey Middle School Students The smallest seedlings grow strong and full, branching out to new horizons.
  • 2. Contents: Acknowledgements Introduction Brainstorming Design Charrettes Collages Presentations
  • 3. Acknowledgements: Special thanks to all of the Casey Middle School students and experts who worked with us on this competition. We had a great time working with all of you and greatly appreciate your help!
  • 4. Introduction: Since 2006 we have partnered with Casey Middle School offering students the opportunity to create and implement environmentally conscious design solutions. The Architecture for Humanity Design Competition offered the perfect venue for even more focused application of sustainable practices. Casey students were involved in a series of brainstorming sessions. visioning workshops, design charettes, design reviews, and curriculum development as part of their Applied Science class. STUDENT FEEDBACK: As part of this course what activities would you defi- Surveys were conducted throughout the class to nitely keep and was the best part of working with us? capture student wishes and desires. Some of the “Working with [your team] because it is really fun responses are below: and a good learning experience.” What are some things you learned in this course? “Hands on. It’s fun!” “what sustainable actually means” “Making the wind mills and solar ovens because they were fun.” “how to recycle more with building materials” “Building stuff out of cardboard because it was “about renewable energy” fun and educational.” Do you prefer circular or irregular forms over square “Field trips!” or rectangular forms? “Designing a green portable/modular building be- 100% said yes! cause you take everything you learned and physi- cally apply it.” What is your favorite thing to do at recess? “Building sustainable architecture” “hang out with friends” “Drawing your own ideas because all the kids are “talk, run, laugh, lie down”[ creative.” “talk with friends” “Designing a sustainable and portable building “soccer, football” because I learned so much.” “basketball courts” “Drawing. I really like drawing.” Would you like to grow vegetables and eat them? PRELIMINARY REVIEW FEEDBACK FINAL REVIEW FEEDBACK 80% said yes “Teamwork was beyond excellent!!!!! Knowledge “That is so cool!!!” - they know what they’re talking about.” “I love the outdoor classroom.” Would you like to have a cool shady place to hang “Need more sustainable ideas.” “Is this really gonna get built ‘cause that would be out on your playground? “Great job listening to students!” really cool.” 100% said yes!
  • 5. Brainstorming and Evaluating Designs with Casey Students
  • 6. Design Charrettes with Casey Students “I want a bathroom but what if people can hear us? That would be gross.” “I want to see outside. We need lots of windows!” “We need a lot more space. I can’t store anything in here.” - Ms. Kimmel, teacher “I want it to be round and with a greenhouse.”
  • 7. Creating Collages with Casey Students “My mom let me cut up her National Geographic magazines for this. That’s why it looks so green.” - Kenahn “It needs to be fun.” - Ashley “Green walls and roofs should be everywhere.” - Nick
  • 8. Reviews and Final Critiques with Casey Students “I don’t like black. My favorite colors are blue and green.” “Is there going to be a wind mill?” - Menilla “Our classrooms too small. There’s not enough natural sunlight. And we need a bathroom so we don’t have to go outside.”
  • 9. Plant the SEED, Grow the Mind. Sustainable and Educational Environmental Design The growing needs for classrooms and sustainable solutions to stem global warming lend themselves to a synthesis of teaching those solutions through the classroom itself. Plant the SEED and grow the mind. Our SEED classroom is designed create a classroom core with optional site and program specific components that are sustainably engineered, mass produced, shipped globally and easily assembled. Given these inherent qualities, the SEED classroom is well-suited to be used as a tool for teaching sustainable and environmental design. Students can become intimately knowledgeable of core systems within the building through hands-on interaction and inquiry-based learning. Through the adaptive use of component systems, each SEED can be responsive to the local environment within a given region, school district or community. Casey Middle School in Boulder, Colorado is currently under construction and its students are relocated to a nearby school in a standard modular classroom. Colorado is a mixed hot/cold and semi-arid climate. Our specific site for the SEED is on the grounds for the new school, nestled within open space used for play and entry courtyard. The SEED has the capacity to be completely off-grid, and the SEED’s sustainable engineering allow it to be Net Zero. The building can produce a surplus of energy through thermal storage and photovoltaic panels and reduces the expected water consumption by up to 60,000 gallons of water a year compared to turf in the same footprint. Finally, the SEED is structured to be mass-produced through the use of structurally insulated panels, modular glazing panels and a standard 8’x40’ shipping container. All the building components can be packed within a shipping container, transported throughout the United States or overseas. Once on-site, the SEED can be assembled and easily constructed using simple methods. Casey Middle School students were directly involved in the process of designing and conceiving the SEED. The Architecture for Humanity Design Competition offered the perfect venue for a focused application of sustainable practices. Casey students were involved in a series of brainstorming sessions, visioning workshops, design charettes, design reviews, and curriculum development as part of their Applied Science class. A companion curriculum was created to teach environmental education and sustainable
  • 10. design. Through exercises involving interactive lectures, drawing, model making and field trips, students became familiar with passive heating and cooling techniques, daylighting, waste management, and related sustainability concepts. Through an ongoing collaboration, Casey student feedback and suggestions were incorporated into our final design. Common complaints about their current modular classroom included the lack of natural light, the HVAC unit being too loud, the space being too boxy and claustrophobic, and not being fun or engaging. Our design team took these student and teacher comments, weighed them against the site and program requirements, and researched of passive heating and cooling techniques. The building responds to the site by utilizing passive heating through thermal water mass, a super insulated envelope, radiant flooring and a greenhouse. The south facing greenhouse allows radiation to enter and heat the thermal water mass and concrete floor. The heat is captured and stored here during the day and released at night as the temperature drops. A series of water cylinders connected together at the top to a pump pushes water through radiant tubing within the floor of the classroom. As cooler water returns, it is pumped back into the bottom of the cylinder allowing it to be recirculated. Heat is thus distributed from the greenhouse and water wall into the classroom. The classroom is also heated through a natural stratification of air. The upper classroom will draw heat from the greenhouse simply by allowing the heat to rise and enter. Natural ventilation, summer shading and radiant flooring naturally cool the classroom. Southern upper and lower windows in the greenhouse and northern windows allow summer southwest breezes to flow through the space. This creates negative pressure and allows cool air from the shaded underside of the building to enter. South facing overhangs shade the water wall in the summer and prevent direct heat gain. Cool water residing in the water wall is pumped into the classroom radiant flooring and absorbs excess heat. Daylighting is naturally provided by a south facing light shelf that allows sun to bounce into the space and down into the staircase. Expansive northern windows and Solatubes provide abundant indirect lighting into the classroom space. A greywater and water harvesting system helps manage water usage. The building’s three sinks are fed to a greywater tank to be used for landscaping. Although Colorado law prohibits the collection and storage of rainwater, the butterfly roofs shed water to a detention storage basin and directly to plantings. Other regions without this law will be
  • 11. able to collect and store rainwater for ongoing usage in the greenhouse. Sewer lines are avoided by using an electric composting toilet that can periodically serviced. These passive techniques and program needs drove the form of the building, but the engagement of students and the community brought it to life. The greenhouse is intended to be a learning tool as well as a way to draw community interaction. Seedlings grown in the greenhouse can be planted in a nearby garden or given to students and family. The shaded area below the building is intended to be a welcome environment an extension of the play area beyond. Extensive plantings and whimsical planting beds invite interaction and engagement. Lessons can be organized around plantings and helping build their own environment. The building provides for classroom spaces inside the class and under the class as well as on the deck. The deck area is an extension of the classroom through an open collapsible door. Trellis areas and a raised garden extend plantings to the classroom plane and provide enclosed spaces for breakout activities. Planting a SEED in your neighborhood will not only provide an interactive and experiential learning environment, but will also promote a network of learning and a sense of empowerment throughout your entire community. Plant the SEED, Grow the Mind.
  • 12. –‡ ‘•– Interior Finishings: ƒ”’‡– ‹†‘™• ‘‘”• ƒ„‹‡–• –ƒ‹Ž‡•• –‡‡Ž ‹ Žƒ› ‡’–—‡ ƒ—…‡–• ‹š–—”‡• ”‹ ƒ‹– ‡ƒŽ ‹Ž œ‡”‘ Š‹–‡„‘ƒ”† TOTAL $13,080.67 Lighting: …‘›•–‡ —• —’’Ž› ‡•‘”• ƒ’ ƒŽŽƒ•–• —––‘ …‡‡ ‘–”‘Ž• ”‘‰”ƒ‡” ƒ„Ž‡ Ž—‘”‡•…‡– ‹‰Š–• ‘Žƒ” ’‘– ‹‰Š–• ƒ†•…ƒ’‡ ‹‰Š–‹‰ —–†‘‘” ‘‡” —‡Ž ‹‰Š–• –ƒ‹” ‹‰Š–• †‡”™ƒ–‡” ‹‰Š– TOTAL $6849.00 Construction Materials: –ƒ”– ’
  • 13. Š‹’’‹‰ ‘–ƒ‹‡” ‡‡–Ž‡ ‹ŽŽ ‹‡ –”—…–—”ƒŽ ‘’‘‡–• ‡•–”‘‘ ‹•… ”‡‡Š‘—•‡ ‘’‘‡–• ‘‘ˆ‹‰ ƒ†‹ƒ– ‡ƒ–‹‰ ‘’‘‡–• ‘Žƒ” ƒ‡Ž  ƒ”–Š™‘” ”ƒ‹ƒ‰‡ ‡•‹‰ ƒ† †‹‹•–”ƒ–‹‘ ƒ†•…ƒ’‡ ”…Š‹–‡…–—”‡
  • 14. ‹•… ‹–‡ ‡“—‹”‡‡–• TOTAL: …‘•– „‡ˆ‘”‡ ˆ—†‹‰ ˆ—†‹‰ after funding $73,226.00 ƒ–‡” ƒ•• ƒŽŽ ‡”‰› ”‘†—…‡† ‡‡†‡† ™ƒ––• ›” ™ƒ––• ›” •—”’Ž—• ‘ˆ ™ƒ––• ›” Existing Site and Landscape Water Usage bulk rate for 1,000 gals = $8 PROJECT TOTALS IRRIGATED ACRES 0.09 GALLONS/YEAR used 72,249.29 $ 577.99 ACRE FEET/YEAR 0.22 PEAK SEASON GPM 11.50 Proposed Site and Landscape Water Usage PROJECT TOTALS IRRIGATED ACRES 0.03 GALLONS/YEAR used 11,661.15 $ 93.29 ACRE FEET/YEAR 0.04 PEAK SEASON GPM 3.85 Savings PROJECT TOTALS IRRIGATED ACRES 0.06 GALLONS/YEAR Saved 60,588.14 $ 484.71 ACRE FEET/YEAR Saved 0.18 PEAK SEASON GPM 7.65 Money Saved per year $ 484.71
  • 15. Introduction: The Sustainability Outreach Booklet which follows provides general information and lesson plans for Boulder Valley School District and public use. All lesson plans and designs were created by Casey Middle School students with the help of our team over the 2008 2009 school year. Casey Middle School is developing a Sustainability Ambassadors Program which will serve as a model for other schools. With the addition of our proposed modular classroom (the SEED – “Sustainable and Educational Environmental Design”), this program will continue to grow and develop. The following curriculum has been modified to hide the identity of contest participants.
  • 16. Sustainability Outreach Booklet Casey Middle School-Applied Science Class University of Colorado– The Department of Architecture
  • 17. Casey Middle School Sustainability Ambassadors Program Sustainability Outreach Booklet Casey Middle School Amber Hawk Ashley Hernandez Celeste Bradford James Szkobel Wolff Joe Eberle Casey Middle School is a bilingual Josh Fidler school with many different cultures. Keenan Hursh We are a green school. This means we don’t won’t to harm the environ- Minela Dacic ment. We want to have the earth for Nicholas Johansen future generations. Casey Middle School Niki Shrestha 2410 13th Street Tucker Van Leuwen Hall Boulder, CO 80304 Kendra Kimmel 720-561-5446 Email: University of Colorado College of Architecture and Planning Sustainability and Design Students—Spring 2009 Susan Strife Bambi Yost College of Architecture and Planning Jason Bentley University of Colorado-Boulder Environmental Design Building Eric Ellis 1060 18th Street, Room 168 Boulder, CO 80309
  • 18. Page 2 What is the Sustainability Outreach Booklet? The Sustainability Outreach Booklet was designed as a learning tool to teach students, teachers, community members, and families about sustainability. It is our hope that the information and lesson plans included in this booklet aid in the process of teaching the next Caption describing picture or graphic. generation about how we can develop and protect resources to meet the needs of our community. Sustainability Ambassadors – Casey Middle School Applied Science is an elective class offered at Casey Middle SchooI. This class provides an opportunity for students to extend their knowledge of scientific concepts by working on real-world problems and issues. The 2008-2009 school year focused on the fundamentals of sustainability. In anticipation of Casey’s new school building project, students engaged in activities surrounding sustainable design and worked to develop the Sustainability Ambassadors Program for Casey Middle School. University of Colorado Collaboration Everyone in the 2008-2009 Applied Science class would like to thank the C.U. students who came to our class to teach us more about sus- tainability and help us with the Sustainability Ambassadors Program. Our weekly meetings contributed to the successful launch of this this program and the writing of this booklet. Thanks for a great year!
  • 19. Casey Middle School Sustainability Ambassadors Program Page 3 Table of Contents Inside This Booklet: Background Information: 4-7 x Introduction to Sustainability x Sustainable Design x Biomimicry x Renewable Energy Today's problems cannot be solved if we still Lessons Plans: 8- think the way x Introduction to Sustainability we thought x Sustainable Design and Building when we x Biomimicry created them - Albert Einstein x Renewable Energy x Green Schools
  • 20. Page 4 BACKGROUND INFORMATION What is Sustainability? Sustainability: 2 a: of, relating to, or being a method of harvesting or using a resource so that the resource is not depleted or permanently damaged sustainable tech- niques sustainable agriculture b: of or relating to a lifestyle involving the use of sustainable methods sustainable society Definition courtesy of Sustainability is a way of living. When we are sustainable we help the environ- ment in thousands of ways. We can be sustainable simply be turning off the lights when we leave a room or turning off the water when we brush our teeth. Sustainability is how we influence the environment. Sustainability is important because without it we create an environment that is less than ideal. The big- gest challenge to creating a more eco-friendly environment is passing on the knowledge that other generations have learned to the next generation.
  • 21. Casey Middle School Sustainability Ambassadors Program Page 5 Sustainable Design Sustainable design is a way of building buildings in such a way that they are not harmful to the environment. The most important aspect of sustainability is that you use different materials to make a building in a “green” or environmentally friendly way. For example, you can use bamboo flooring because bamboo grows faster than trees that we would normally use for walls, floors, and doors. You can use solar panels to run your electricity throughout your house without using fossil fuels. You can use green roofs. A green roof is a roof that can be used to cool your house during late spring and summer, that way you don’t need to use air condition- ing. You can use natural lighting, natural lighting is just basically using more windows, so that you are not wasting energy and it is better for your health be- cause the chemicals it takes to run all the heating and cooling systems goes through out your “house” and reveals it to your lungs and most of the stuff they use is toxic so using an alternative is better for you. You can also use geothermal exchange pumps so that you can keep warm during those cold autumn and winter months so you are not using “pollution heating systems.” These pumps are heating pumps that can use the earth for energy without using gases that would, once again, harm the environ- ment. ( Why is sustainable design important? This is important because it helps the environment without destroying nature. Plus you get all the environmentally friendly sustainable design materials and you save a lot of money.
  • 22. Page 6 BACKGROUND INFORMATION Biomimicry? Biomimicry is when designers and engineers’ base there designs off of the natural world. This method of designing can save money and also helps save the planet. Exam- ples such as cars the box fish car uses the aerodynamics of fish. Building cars this way can make the car go faster and improve on gas mileage saving the precious fossil fuel we have left here on earth. Another example is the biowave. The Biowave is based off of biomim- icry copying how seaweed moves in the water and converts the currents of the ocean into usable energy. Using this method of creating energy is very efficient because it doesn’t take a lot of materials to create and also is a very good way of creating energy. The water moves the devices back and forth with every wave; this creates energy which is turned into electricity without creating any pollution. Another simple example of biomimicry is the pitch roof of a house. If you look it kind of re- sembles the triangular shape of a mountain. This is because when it rains the water can wash off of it without getting stuck. Many of the things in our world that we consider normal are based on things in the natural world. This isn’t just a coincidence; we have designed buildings, vehicles and more off of nature because it’s a very efficient and a smart way to build.
  • 23. Casey Middle School Sustainability Ambassadors Program Page 7 Renewable Energy Renewable energy as opposed to non-renewable energy is a way to provide our communi- ties with energy that can be renewed or replenished. Renewable energy is simply using something (ex. Wind, Sun, Water, etc.) and turning it into clean non-polluting energy that can be used over and over without harming the planet. In order for renewable energy to be considered “renewable” it needs to take a substance that is abundant, and be able to turn it into environmentally friendly energy. There are many different renewable energies out in the world today. The only disadvantage to renewable energy is it isn’t exactly cheap, but it can help you save money in the long run. SOLAR One type of solar energy takes the solar rays of the sun and turns the energy into electric- ity to power homes and possibly vehicles. The photovoltaic cells held within the solar panel creates the suns energy into renewable energy. There are also solar tubes, they have many names but they are most commonly known the previous. Basically, it has tubes that allow water to run through them, the heat from the sun warms up the water which can be used to heat the house, and be used for sinks, and showers. These have an incredible pay back (money wise) in a short time since we use a lot of electricity trying to heat our water. WIND Another renewable energy is wind energy, which takes the movement of wind and makes it turn a generator which creates energy. The turbines, which are angled, get pushed by the wind and then turn a generator which in turn, creates energy which later gets turned into electricity. Wind energy has been used for hundreds of years, back when the Romans were the rulers of Europe, they would erect huge windmills which were built with stone for the base, and wood and animal hides were used for the blades. These would turn wheels and crush grain cutting down the cost of man power. HYDROPOWER And then there is hydropower, which is almost the exact kind of idea as wind energy, except it uses water. You place a turbine either horizontally over the water, or vertically under the water. The water pushes the turbines and turns them, which then turns a generator and creates energy which then creates electricity. Hydropower has been used for thousands of years. Even before Christ was born, the Chinese were using hydropower; they would us it to turn wheels which moved hammers up and down. They would put things such as wheat, animal hides, and dough cutting down on human pay and making production faster. But more currently it has been used in many dams. Probably the most famous and most power producing dam in the United States is the Hoover Dam. Which is on the Colorado River, it can produce enough energy so it can power about 1.2 million homes.
  • 24. Page 8 LESSON PLANS INTRODUCTION TO SUSTAINABILITY Lesson Overview: Earth functions as a massive life-support system for six billion human beings, as well as the trillions of Lesson Plan 1: other life forms that share the planet with us. Often students do not consider the earth as a system, nor Understanding our human society as a system dependent on that ecosys- Limits on Earth: tem. This giant ecosystem is also a closed system – where everything is cycled, and recycled; nothing Why Sustainability comes in and nothing goes out. The Spaceship Earth activity can be used to illustrate a variety of subjects Matters within the context of ecological sustainability, and is a great opening to a program. The activity challenges students to design their own spaceship (their own eco- logical and human system), which triggers all sorts of questions and decisions about how people can (and should?!) live on “Spaceship Earth”. Designing a long duration space mission demonstrates that any life- support system we depend on will be patterned after that of Earth. Lesson Objectives: x Students will understand the complexity of systems and recognize that Earth is a closed system. x Students will engage in a problem solv- ing and critical thinking task to design a life-support system that is sustainable for thousands of years. x Students will explore questions of eco- logical sustainability in a small group of peers, challenging them to come up with and articulate their own answers to community sustainability.
  • 25. Casey Middle School Sustainability Ambassadors Program Page 9 Engage: Tell the students that something has happened to earth, and that people are preparing to leave. Make a creative story of why – and tell students that it is most likely that people will not return to the earth. Explain that their task is to design a spaceship that will support a certain number of people for potentially thousands, or even millions, of years. Ex- plain that they can take whatever they want from Earth, that their spaceship can be any size (within reason), but that it must be a fully functioning life supporting system (ie. all the people must be able to live on this spaceship indefinitely). Tell students not to focus on how the spaceship will travel in space, but on how the people will live inside it. Remind them that this is a closed system; once they leave earth nothing will come in and nothing can leave the spaceship (eg. they cannot send their garbage or sewage out into space; they can however capture the sun’s energy). In making decisions about what their spaceship system will be like, students must discuss and resolve questions such as: R How many people will you bring? (reasonable, eg. 1000 not one million) R What will people eat? R How will you provide adequate drinking water? R Where will the sewage and garbage go? R What technologies will you use? R Will there be animals? bikes? cars? R Will there be schools, hospitals, government?
  • 26. Page 10 LESSON PLANS Introduction to sustainability Explore/Explain Get students into groups of 4 or 5. Hand out one cardstock paper to each group. Ask them to take about 15 minutes to brainstorm all the ideas they have and discuss the design of their spaceship. After your sign off, they will then draw their spaceship on the other side of the paper. CU students should circulate amongst the groups to ask probing questions such as those listed above, and others. Ask groups to get “CU” sign off before they start drawing their spaceship on the other side of the paper. Your sign off will be one final chance to ask any more probing questions and to test some of the as- sumptions students may have made. (eg. ask them to explain their drinking wa- ter/wastewater system, or their government structure, or ask them how many males and females they will bring on board… why?). Search for holes in their system design, and ask probing questions that stimulate them to think deeper, and to ensure the spaceship is a closed system. Allow ample time for groups to draw their spaceship systems. (30-40 minutes) Tell them that they are then going to present their spaceships to the rest of the class. Give a few minutes to prepare for their presentations. Elaborate/Evaluate Ask each group to present the details of their systems and why they chose what they did. Invite the rest of the class to ask questions of the group. Will these people on this spaceship survive for thousands of years? Why or why not? (take about 5 minutes per group). Debrief the activity: What did you learn? What is a closed system? What are some of the key require- ments for a spaceship to be sustainable over time? How are your spaceships similar to Earth? Have we designed our own lifestyles and communities to be sustainable over a long period of time? (5 to 10 min- utes) Students may enjoy the following quotes: “There are no passengers on spaceship earth. We are all crew.” -- Marshall McLuhan “You get out there in space and say to yourself: that’s home. That’s the only home we have, and the only one we’re going to have for a long time” -- Edgar Dean Mitchell, Apollo 14 Astronaut
  • 27. Page 11 INTRODUCTION TO SUSTAINABILITY Lesson Overview: Each of us “consume” or use a piece of nature every day. We are dependent on natural resources - productive land to grow our food, build our homes, produce our energy, and to store Lesson Plan 2: our wastes. How much we take from nature depends on our daily habits – the things we do each day that help us satisfy our Carbon Footprints: needs and wants. An ecological footprint estimates how much “nature” a lifestyles requires. It estimates productive land and Why Sustainability water needed to support what we use and what we throw Matters away, measured in hectares. Ecological footprints can be cal- culated for individuals, communities, and even countries, and there are several easy to use online tools to estimate these (see or ). In this lesson, students will learn about the ecological footprint concept. They will calculate their own footprints, reflect on it, and find ways to alter their lifestyle to reduce their ecological load. They will find ways to reduce ecological footprints of vari- ous aspects of society and take action by writing a letter to rep- resentatives of various institutions about how ecological foot- prints can be reduced. Lesson Objectives: x Students will be able to assess the effects of different lifestyle choices on the local and global environments. x Students will calculate and reflect on their own ecological footprint using an on-line (or print) Ecological Footprint Calculator. x Students will identify ways in which different sectors of society can reduce impacts on the en- vironment. x Students will take action by writing a letter to a government official, industry representative, or other institution on how that agency will reduce
  • 28. Page 12 Casey Middle School Sustainability Ambassadors Program Introduction to sustainability Engage: Explaining Ecological Footprint (~15 min) x Ask students if they have ever heard of the concept of eco-footprint. What do you think it means? Explain that the ecological footprint is calculated in amount of land (use the overview in- formation above or other knowledge you may have). x Use the following Allegorical Apple activity to demonstrate the amount of “bioproductive” land on Earth. This demonstration shows that, despite how large the Earth may seem, the amount of natural resources available for people to use are limited and we must use them carefully. a. Present a good-sized apple to the group and explain that in this allegorical exercise, the apple represents the Earth. b. Cut the Earth into four pieces and discard three of the pieces representing saltwater oceans, 75% of the earth. c. Slice the remaining piece of Earth in half and discard one piece representing land, such as de- serts, which is inhospitable to people. d. Slice the remaining 1/8 of the Earth into four sections and set aside three of the sections repre- senting areas too rocky, too steep, or too cold to produce food. Carefully peel the skin off the remaining 1/32 slice of the earth. This represents the surface of the earth, the earth’s crust with its topsoil which humanity depends on. Explain that the earth’s topsoil is only about five feet deep and produces a relatively fixed amount of food. Over farming and ero- sion take away 24 billion tons of topsoil per year. Each inch of top soil requires 100 years to form. Explain that there are 51 million hectares of surface on Earth, but that 12 billion (10 billion land and 2 billion water) are biologically productive, therefore capable of supporting hu- man demand for resources and treatment of waste. Ensure students understand this. Ask students how many people are on Earth (6+ billion and growing!). “So, if we have 12 billion hectares of land and 6 billion people, how many hectares do we get each?” – 2 hectares each! Explain that if we are to share the Earth’s resources equitably and have a sustainable lifestyle, our eco-footprint must be 2 hectares or less. Use the outdoor space you are in to help students envision how small 2 hectares are. R If someone points it out, follow their comment/question, otherwise at this stage, ask students “Now, are humans the only creatures on the Earth who need food, shelter, energy?” No, we share the Earth with 10 million other species who also need bioproductive land. So that means our eco- footprints should actually be less than 2 hectares if we are going to leave any land for other 10 mil- lion species besides us.
  • 29. Page 13 LESSON PLANS Introduction to sustainability Explore/Explain – Calculating our Eco-footprints (~45 - 60 min) x If possible, use the eco-footprint calculator online x Have students follow ecological worksheet, see attached. x Have students share what their eco-footprint is in pairs. x Then, as a group, discuss how students felt when they learned how big their eco-footprint is. Is it big? Why? What are the “big ticket items” that make their footprints large? x Take a few random eco-footprint numbers and quickly calculate how many earths would be needed if everyone lived that lifestyle. Use: NUMBER OF EARTHS NEEDED = ECOFOOTPRINT OF INDIVIDUAL FAIR EARTH SHARE (2 hectares) So that is: X = 10 (ex) = 5 earths! 2 Elaborate Ask students what the problem with our consumption habits. Engage in group discussion about “green consumerism” – and how to curb our wasteful habits. Let the conversation come from the students. (10-20 minutes).
  • 30. Page 14 INTRODUCTION TO SUSTAINABILITY Lesson Plan 3: Exploring our Eco-Footprints Engage: x To start thinking about how individuals can reduce their ecological foot- prints, explain that students will go on a brief “solo” outside. Have them to bring their journals with them, and tools for writing, drawing etc. They are go- ing to find a place alone (where they can’t see or hear anyone else), and spend 10 minutes reflecting and brainstorming on ideas to reduce their own ecological footprints. x Help students find a solo location – which may take several minutes to place the entire group in their own private places. x Ensure students are focused on the task and not disturbing other stu- dents. They should have a good 10 minutes of solo time. THEY SHOULD NOT BE NEAR EACHOTHER. x Explain that when they hear this sound [whatever loud holler sound you want], then it is time to return to the field station.
  • 31. Page 15 Explore/Explain: x Debrief the solo by starting with students getting into pairs and sharing their ideas on how to reduce their eco-footprints. x Bring the students together and have people share ideas with the whole group. How can we reduce our energy impacts? How can we reduce our eco- footprint from food? What about waste? Transportation? x Discuss the difference between “needs” and “wants”. What is something we need? What is something we want? Are these the same? Have students come up with examples of needs vs. wants. Do you need or want food? Do you need or want to fly in an airplane? Do you need or want to wear leather? Bring the discussion a little broader – from individual, to community, to country: how can we reduce the ecological footprint of our communities, of US? Explore/Explain: x Explain that you would like students to write a letter to a government official, busi- ness, corporation, industry, their own school or any other institution. Discuss the impor- tance of writing letters as a key aspect of being a responsible and active citizen. It is our role to tell government, industry, our community what we think about problems, issues and solutions. One way to do this is to write a letter to the appropriate decision maker. x Help students choose the right person, government, or institution – eg. for community issues they could write to the Mayor and Council, for logging issues they could write to a logging company or the government, for food concerns they could write to a major food producer or to the agricultural ministry. (You will need to look up the exact contacts online afterwards, or if some students are done early you can get them to find the address using the computer in the library). The theme of the letter is to ask the recipient how they are going to reduce the ecological footprint of their institution, and for the student to make some suggestions. Ask the stu- dents to explain in their letters what the ecological footprint concept is and why they are concerned about it. Have the students make a request of the person, government, or in- stitution. Use the letter writing tips below, and remind students that these are tips for whenever they may write letters in the future on issues they are concerned about. Hand out envelopes, and collect the letters from students. Ensure they have put their re- turn home addresses on the letter and envelope. Fill out the receivers’ addresses as the letters are completed, or look the addresses up later. You can mail the letters after camp is over.
  • 32. Page 16 LESSON PLANS SUSTAINABLE DESIGN Lesson Overview: This day will focus on sustainable design and important Lesson Plan 1: features of a building that not only conserves energy but possibly produces energy. By learning about the Sustainable Design: important components of building sustainably, the stu- dents will then be able to incorporate those ideas into Creating a Candy their models. The idea of building the model is to take Shop the design process into the construction/build stage of the process with sustainability in mind. The model is not intended to look exactly like what the students have design but it should show the details that the kids have come up with in their diagrams. Lesson Objectives: x Students get the chance to use a model to show their ideas. x Students will experience a simulated build process of the design.
  • 33. Casey Middle School Sustainability Ambassadors Program Page 17 Engage: Start this lesson by asking the students what ideas they have about sustain- able design. After brainstorming this list, read to the students the following scenario: You and some team members (other students) have been hired to create a sustainable candy shop for Boulder. The owner is looking for you to design a candy shop for multiple users such as children, parents, teenagers and the elderly. You must take into consideration all of these users and think about how to design the shop in a way that is friendly to the environment. And you only have a half an hour to do so! This candy shop can be located at the desti- nation of your choice. You will want to take this into consideration as this will affect who uses the candy shop and when. The purpose of this exercise is to create an awareness of the different groups of users and amount of cooperation that is necessary in the design process as well as learn about sustainability in the design processs. From these discussions you will begin to develop a bubble diagram and onto a layout of the design of the candy shop. You should keep sustainability in mind and try to come up with at least five design aspects that make the shop sustainable.
  • 34. Page 18 LESSON PLANS Sustainable Design Explore/Explain Break students into 4 groups and have students create a “bubble” diagram for a candy shop. Each member of the group will represent a different group of peo- ple in the community that they will speak for: Adult, Child, Teenager, Elderly (and one student should represent the shop owner!) Have each team present their shop to the class and have the rest of the class think about ways to evaluate their design. Elaborate/Evaluate Class Discussion/Reflection Questions: x What were the influences/recommendations coming from each representative member? x Did you find it difficult to accommodate every group or did it go together easily? x Do you think the design process is ever really finished? x What did you learn about sustainability in the design process? x Why is it called “the design process?”
  • 35. Page 19 SUSTAINABLE DESIGN Lesson Overview: Practicing environmental engineering successfully requires a working knowledge of a wide variety of ecosystems. From the study of lakes on learn about nutrients, energy flows, chemis- Lesson Plan 2: try, and the dynamics of liquids. From the rain forest one can learn about diversity, the portioning of light, and the way many Green City Design different life forms can efficiently share a complex, quickly changing environment. There is nowhere better the tropical rain Projects forest to study nature's pathways of decay and transformation. From the northern forests I have gathered an appreciation of the exquisite relationship of geology and bedrock to soil, and the way in which higher plants negotiate these interactions. Two entirely different ecologies and their radical variation may exist with in a short distance of each other because of subtle differences in the minerals of the soil. In deserts, which are en- vironments of extremes, ecological processes are easier to read because plants and animals are more spread out. Various forms of life are starkly etched on the landscape, and some- times this starkness clearly reveals patens and illuminates the mechanisms of ecological organization. (John Todd in Ausubel, 2003, p. 19). Lesson Objectives: x Students will design a city using sustain- able principals. x Students will understand the complexities of city planning and all the overlapping economic, sociological and environmental needs. In addition not all solutions should be universally applied; we need to look to nature locally to find local answers. (For example challenges and solutions may be different for Miami verses Chicago).
  • 36. Page 20 Casey Middle School Sustainability Ambassadors Program Sustainable Design Engage: Teacher opens with a dramatic introduction: quot;there has been a major disaster and you have been hired to redesign the city from scratch.quot; Explore/Explain: Students are put in groups of 3-4 and they have to come up with their designs. Each group is given a city and asked the following questions: Find out 1) the natural history: topography of the area, the local climate, and biome fac- tors. 2) Research one native plant in the area. Why is it so well adapted to this place? How could you use some of these ideas in your city plan? 3) Research an animal that is native to the area, how is it so well adapted to this place? What inspirations can you find from this animal in the design of your city? 4) Make sure you include, how the city ac- quires energy and water, what they do with waste, what is the transportation plan, where do people live? Work? One student can look up climate and maps of the area, another student can look up in- formation on adaptation of plants and the third student can research the adaptations of a local animal to the eco-region/biome. Then in class students can agree on the city plans addressing the questions above and draw a diagram to represent their ideas. Students then present in the third period/ second half of double block.
  • 37. Page 21 LESSON PLANS Sustainable Design Elaborate Student's present their city plans to the class. Classmates ask questions about decisions made by each group. EXAMPLE: Student group one selected Phoenix Arizona. In researching this city they find that it is in the desert. They select the saguaro cactus and the kan- garoo rat as organism inspiration. They find that the Kangaroo rat makes its home underground to keep cool during the summer days and warm on winter nights. The kangaroo rat also keeps all water possible and has adapted a means of processing urine which does not require water loss. The saguaro uses the sun to acquire energy and collects water during monsoon storms and stores it for later. The new city takes inspiration from the cactus and is able to use solar on all building roofs this can take care of hot water heating and most energy re- quirements. There are also back up wind farms (deserts are known for wind) and a biomass generation plant. Like the burrows of the kangaroo rats, homes are built with thick stone/adobe walls or partial earth homes to maintain cooler temperatures without as much energy hungry air conditioning. Overhanging eves are used to keep midday and summer sun from heating home through win- dows. Also inspired by the kangaroo rat all water is conserved and reused as much as possible. Water in homes is on a grey water separation system in which water used for cleaning (sinks, showers, washers) is recycled and used in garden and home plants. Gardens use xeriscaping for drought-tolerant, native plants. Therefore they need little to no watering. Residents are encouraged to compost food scraps and create natural amendments for their gardens with low organic desert soil. Local farms or home gardens use drip irrigation at night. There is a light rail system around town and safe bike paths are built throughout the city. There are some shopping districts which are pedestrian only. There is a rail stop near by, and if people must drive the parking structure has many floors
  • 38. Page 22 LESSON PLANS RENEWABLE ENERGY Lesson Plan 1: Introduction to Renewable Energy Lesson Objectives: x Students will understand what energy is, where it is, and where it comes from x Students will be able to discuss the benefits and drawbacks of solar energy x Students will gain a basic understanding of how the sun energy is captured and utilized Students will be able to confidently and correctly
  • 39. Casey Middle School Sustainability Ambassadors Program Page 23 Engage: To begin we will ask a few questions to the class to see what they already know about renewable energy sources. -What is renewable energy? -What are several types of renewable energy? -Why is renewable energy so important? -What are negative impacts of renewable energies? Explore/Explain/Elaborate: Have each team think about ways to present their renewable energy to the rest of the class. They can write a description, create a poem, write a story or create a presentation. Have each student group present their renewable energy to the rest of the class. Allow time for questions and discussion.
  • 40. Page 24 RENEWABLE ENERGY Lesson Overview: During this lesson, students will construct and solar cook- ers to observe the differences in their efficiency. Students Lesson Plan 2: should have an appreciation of the availability, simplicity, and cost effectiveness of using the sun as an energy Solar Energy source. Students will compute Fahrenheit/Centigrade con- versions. The general principle of a solar cooker is to heat food using the sun, which shines directly and can also be reflected. Dark cooking utensils absorb heat en- ergy. A glass top traps the heat inside. In this activity, stu- dents will be measuring the temperature of cooking sur- faces for three different types of solar cookers, a reflective box cooker, a cone shaped cooker, and a black box cooker. This activity concentrates on measuring and com- paring the temperatures produced by these cookers. Materials: Lesson Objectives: x A medium size pizza box (Pizza Hut boxes work great) x Students will understand how the x Black construction paper sun’s energy can be used; x Extra-wide aluminum foil x Students will understand how x Plastic (plastic window covering solar energy can be used as a from a hardware store works best) substitute to gas and electric x Glue heating. x Tape x Scissors x Ruler x Magic marker x String x Smores stuff (graham crackers, chocolate, marshmallows)
  • 41. Page 25 Casey Middle School Sustainability Ambassadors Program Renewable energy Engage: Brainstorm a list on the board of all the words students associate with solar energy. After brainstorming, discuss the project for the day and share that the goal of the lesson is to learn about the power of the sun. Explore: Build Solar Ovens 1. Tape foil to the inside bottom of the box. Cover the foil with black paper. Tape in place. 2. Put the box on the plastic. Draw the outline of the box on the plastic with the marker. Cut the plastic about 1/4 inch inside the marks. 3. On the top of the box, draw a line one inch from all sides. Cut along front and side lines BUT NOT along the back. This will be the hinge for the flap. Carefully fold open the flap. 4. Cut a piece of foil the size of the flap. Glue it to the side of the flap that faces INTO the box. Flatten out all the winkles. Wipe glue smears off with a damp towel before they dry. 5. Tape the plastic to the inside of the box. Tape one side first, then the opposite side. Make it tight so it looks like glass. Tape the other edges. Seal tight so no air can get in. 6. Cut a piece of string as long as the box. Tape one end to the top of the flap. Push a small nail into the back of the box so you have a place to tie the string. Give it a try ... (English muffin pizzas, melting rate of chocolate quot;s-mores,quot; etc....)
  • 42. Page 26 LESSON PLANS Renewable energy Explain/Elaborate Design and build an advanced solar cooker Working in their same groups, students can research commercially available so- lar cookers and other resources for solar cooker construction through the Inter- net. A good place to start would be at Instruct students to identify the components and their specifications (such as cover glass thick- ness, type and rating of insulating material, type and rating of reflective panels, etc.) and propose a design that uses materials obtainable at a hardware or home improvement store. If time and resources are available, the groups can build and test their new designs. This activity can be expanded to be a solar cooker design contest by having each group be responsible for designing, build- ing and cooking a common dish in a cooker. Winning results would be based on the speed with which the cooker produced the finished dish. Solar brownies, cookies or other desert bars would be popular choices and can be obtained as boxed or frozen ingredients. Ask the students what they would do to improve their oven? (add insulation, add reflectors, etc...) Ask them to describe other ways to use solar energy.
  • 43. Page 27 Casey Middle School Sustainability Ambassadors Program Renewable energy Additional Instructions: Constructing and Testing Solar Cookers Before You Start Divide up all the steps in the Lab Activity first, so that everyone has a clear job to do. Materials Obtain an equipment kit from your teacher. Check that it contains the following materials: • 1 timer • sunglasses per student • Materials for Solar Cooker Type #1 (box panel cooker) – 1 cardboard box approximately 30 cm per side – cutting tool – rubber cement – aluminum foil – prop stick • Materials for Solar Cooker Type #2 (simple cone cooker) – 1 90 x 90 cm poster board – aluminum foil – rubber cement – hole punch tool – 3 brass brads – 1 box 30 cm x 30 cm x 30 cm (i.e. copier paper box without lid) • Materials for Solar Cooker Type #3 (modified box panel cooker) – 1 cardboard box approximately 30 cm per side – cutting tool – black paint – paint brush
  • 44. Page 28 LESSON PLANS GREEN SCHOOLS Lesson Overview: Over 55 million students, teachers, faculty and staff spend 6-9 hours a day in K-12 schools and it is becoming a highly observable concern regarding the health of chil- dren and workers. Steps to making our schools more sustainable would result in higher academic scores, creativity, and ecological understanding. The use of alterna- tive toxic chemicals, local nutritious food, green building, maintenance practices, re- source conservation and tools for educating future generations can simply provide healthier learning atmospheres. There are four main pillars that must be applied for greening schools: 1) The most detrimental consequence in schools is the use of toxic chemicals around the perime- ter; different pesticides, cleaning products, lead paint applications, and poor ventila- tion. The transition to green cleaning products would help reduce concentration prob- lems, asthma and worker-related illnesses; 2) Inefficient use of resources from con- sistent abuse of heating to poor lighting conditions. Natural lighting would improve children’s learning conditions and conserve some of the high amounts of electricity that are currently needed to brighten the large spaces; 3) Poor diets due to low nutri- ent food in school lunches. The food that is offered within schools could be more nu- tritious and local. Also, many packed lunches from home contain excessive amounts of packaging and waste; 4) And lastly, the most important concept of green schools is the implementation of ecological education into curricula. Teaching and engaging the students in more sustainable ways of life would result in healthier students and a Lesson Objectives: x Students will understand the impacts that schools have on learning abilities x Students will understand the concerns and progress for making schools healthier x Students will learn the importance of removing toxic chemicals from school grounds x Students will experiment with the use of florescent lighting and natural lighting for active learning x Students will learn the significance of using compost
  • 45. Casey Middle School Sustainability Ambassadors Program Page 29 Engage: R Start off with a discussion introducing some concerns leading to the forma- tion of green schools R What are Green Schools? R 4 pillars R Who is affected? Why is there a need for Green Schools? Explore R We will start with a fifteen-minute brainstorm exploring what they already might know about green schools. We will emphasize that although Casey Mid- dle School is being rebuilt with sustainable objectives; all existing schools have the ability to practice green habits as well. We will list on the board the Casey student’s ideas and if any major topics are forgotten we can ‘hint’ to them until the list is relatively complete. Also give a few brief descriptions of the important factors when looking at green schools. R Second we will circle the topics that we will be covering in this class period, along with the topics that will be addressed in the additional activities on the following days. R Following the engage activity we will give an overview of the upcoming ac- tivities informing them about the three stations, how much time will be allowed for each and the signal to rotate stations. Next will be the numbering off into three groups by passing out note cards with pictures of different toxins, lighting, and ingredients of compost.
  • 46. Page 30 Casey Middle School Sustainability Ambassadors Program Green Schools Explain: Rotate through three stations: Station 1: Compost – TOTAL TIME: 20 MINUTES Materials Three 2-liter bottles Scissors Tape Leaves, twigs, old fruit Dirt Even Styrofoam or paper Process Start by showing a little video on a laptop Do Z’s compost activity Wrap-up The importance of compost and natural processes. Possibly could go into the need for recycling Designate a recorder (maybe Joe?) Record what happens within the first days, and then every week for 2 months
  • 47. Page 31 LESSON PLANS Green Schools Explain Continued: Station 2: Lighting and Air Quality – TOTAL TIME: 20 MINUTES Materials Provided word searches Something to write with Process Start in dark room (you can cover windows and doors if necessary) Have 3 minutes to find as many words a possible in darker area. Record how many words they found Go outside and repeat Pass out new word search Have 3 minutes to find words Record how many words they found Discuss comparing results of inside and outside word searches, talk about how it is important to learn in a space with natural lighting. Wrap-up – The importance of lighting and natural processes.
  • 48. Page 32 Casey Middle School Sustainability Ambassadors Program Green Schools Explain Continued: Station 3: Green Cleaners TOTAL TIME: 20 MINUTES Materials Bucket Sponges Process – Measuring cups Have kids lay out note cards (which will be provided be- Vinegar fore going to stations) and Baking soda leaders will explain how Lemon Juice these are common house- hold products are danger- Newspaper ous. Get input from kids, see if they Surface cleaner have heard of natural cleaners Start mixing surface cleaner ¼ c. baking soda (have different kids help ½ c. vinegar you with each ingredient) 1 gal. water Use sponges to clean personal desk and science area 1 tbsp. lemon juice Recap about why toxic clean- ers are bad Window cleaner 2 tsp. vinegar 1 qt. warm water Newspaper
  • 49. Page 33 LESSON PLANS Green Schools Elaborate/Evaluate: . Once students have returned from their stations, will ask them to present their ideas and observations about what they have learned to the class.  Have them explain: R What they did? R Why they think Green Schools important? R Could these systems be implemented into your current school? R How it helps the environment overall? R Other aspects about their school they feel are not “green.” R “If you were in charge of your new school, how would you include what you have learned today”? New Casey Middle School Building– Concept Drawing