Footprint Futures

Footprint Futures
The key stage 2 and 3 eco-footprint teaching resource from the Centre for Alternative Technology
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Module 1: The Big Picture

Pupils will learn that even our simple actions can have a wider global impact on the environment and on other people, and that many things are connected. They will discover that some positive actions have a bigger impact than others. They will learn that there are different types of ‘footprints’ used to measure land, water, and greenhouse gas emissions. Hopefully they will be motivated to find out more about living sustainably!

Pupils will begin to understand:
  • The basic causes and effects of climate change
  • Climate change is not the same thing as the hole in the ozone layer – (the hole in the ozone layer was caused by CFC gases)
  • Most of our greenhouse gas emissions come from heating, transport, food and the ‘stuff’ that we buy
  • In comparison, a fairly small amount of emissions come from using electrical appliances.
  • That recycling is energy intensive – that is the reason why it is at the bottom of the ‘reduce, re-use, recycle’ list
  • That an eco footprint measures the amount of land we need to produce energy and resources and deal with our waste
  • That a carbon footprint measures the amount of carbon dioxide (CO2) emitted by an activity or manufacture of a product
Through group activity and class discussions, pupils will:
  • Begin to develop interconnected thinking and sequencing skills
  • Begin to realise that some assumptions should be questioned and checked
  • Be able to undertake a simple life cycle analysis, using cards
You will need
You are encouraged to acquire additional resources and materials to make the project relevant to your school. These are described in each activity and also listed here:

1. The Globe Game

  • 1 x Inflatable Globe

2. Footprints

  • Packets of Walkers crisps with 'carbon footprint' icons (not available in multi packs or catering packs)
  • Two similar items made from different materials (eg. a plastic chair and a wooden chair)

    3. Big Feet

      • A large map of the world that you can walk on – this doesn’t have to be accurate, a chalk diagram on the playground would be fine. It needs to be big enough for seven pupils to stand on the land mass comfortably.
      • A very large pair of cardboard shoes – part of the activity can be making them in advance
      • Or you can buy the activity ready made from TTS

        5. Where’s the Impact?

        6. Myth busting

        • Some A4 paper used on both sides and a recycled paper notebook
        • A steel can (tin can) and something made from recycled  steel, like paperclips
        • A plastic drinks bottle and something made from recycled bottles like a fleece

        The Globe Game The Globe Game
        This warm up activity improves pupils awareness of their global connections. View >>
        Footprints Footprints
        This slide show explains what eco footprints and carbon footprints are. View >>
        Big Feet Big Feet
        This is a fun whole class activity that illustrates how a small percentage of the global population have larger eco footprints than the majority. View >>
        The Big Picture The Big Picture
        This slide shows some of the major global environmental issues in a nutshell. View >>
        Where’s the Impact? Where’s the Impact?
        This group activity for the whole class uses cards to explore the wider global impact of familiar products. View >>
        Myth busting Myth busting
        This slide show explains why recycling and switching off the lights isn’t going to save the planet! View >>
        Report Report
        An opportunity for pupils to work in groups or as individuals to report on the days activities. View >>


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