Written by Colin Hocking, Jacqueline
Barber, and Jan Coonrod
This stimulating unit fosters scientific inquiry
and critical thinking skills as it harnesses the curiosity,
agility, and determination of student minds to study the troubling
environmental issue of acid rain.
Students learn about acids, bases, and the pH scale; make "fake
lakes" and determine how their pH changes after an acid
rainstorm; present a play on the effects of acid rain on aquatic
life; determine the effect of various dilutions of acid on seed
germination; and hold a town meeting to discuss possible solutions
to the problem of acid rain. A "startling statements"
game challenges students' preconceptions and prompts investigation.
In addition to providing much information on acid rain, the
unit encourages students to analyze complex environmental issues
for themselves, and emphasizes community cooperation (making
it an effective companion unit to the GEMS guide Global
Warming & the Greenhouse Effect.)
Time: Eight or more 45- to 60-minute sessions.
See the Acid Rain online orientation
Comment on this GEMS unit.