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ERIC Number: ED508687
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 25
Abstractor: As Provided
Marine Debris Clean-Ups as Meaningful Science Learning
Stepath, Carl M.; Bacon, Joseph Scott
Online Submission, Paper presented at the American Geophysical Union 2010 Ocean Sciences Meeting (Portland, OR, Feb 22-26, 2010)
This seven to eight week hands-on Marine Debris Clean-up Project used a service project to provide an introduction of marine science ecology, watershed interrelationships, the scientific method, and environmental stewardship to 8th grade middle school students. It utilized inquiry based learning to introduce marine debris sources and impacts to the students, while demonstrating the integration of service learning programs into meaningful learning situations. The goals of the project were to promote inquiry-based learning, address DOE [Hawaii Department of Education] science learning outcomes, improve students' caring for the environment, train students to improve their future through service learning, to develop pedagogy that engages learners in living laboratories by using preparation, action and reflection phases of instruction, and to promote university, community and K-12 cooperation. It was collaboration between the University of Hawaii Marine Option program, a local NGO, and science teachers from the Chiefess Kamakahelei Middle School, Lihue, Kauai, Hawaii, USA. Students had a chance to learn and apply the scientific method in a real world situation to improve the environment where they live. This program engaged 300 middle school students in activities designed to help them reach Hawaii Department of Education (DOE) science benchmarks, through learning natural systems, monitoring a beach, testing hypotheses, and collection and analysing data associated with a beach clean-up. This outdoor learning experience not only gave the students hands-on science experience, but also provided opportunities for students to write a final report, and give an oral presentation about what they learned. These students applied the scientific method in a real world situation, which was shown to be meaningful by helping them to improve the local environment where they live through active stewardship participation. The project demonstrated how service-learning projects are opportunities for applied science learning, which address real problems existing in the students' community and the ocean environment. As active participants the students learn to develop real life solutions using scientific principles and concepts, and improves their academic development. The project instructors observed positive change in the students' environmental knowledge and attitudes, which will lead to the students taking individual responsibility for positive long-term actions and consequences. (Contains 1 table and 6 figures.) [Support for this project was provided by the Bill Healy Foundation and]
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: Grade 8; Middle Schools
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Hawaii
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A