Project Introduction

For this project, we used the following question to guide the curriculum of the science unit during the 6 week Dorcas Place summer school session entitled "Take a Closer Look".
Does a project-based, multi-sensory 30 hour program, integrated with on-line research as well as field experiences, result in sustained student motivation and commitment as well as mastery of the specifics of our science curriculum?
We chose to base the science unit around the theme of "water". We strongly believe that people must be educated about the critical environmental issues confronting our planet. Most often this mission is undertaken by the more educated, affluent, and well-connected in society. We contend, however, that this mission must be addressed at the grassroots level, involving people like our students who have had little or no opportunity to study environmental issues.

We feel our curriculum more realistically accommodated our students' learning styles as well as their particular cultural and life experiences. This course provided engaging, user-friendly, easy to understand accurate information about a very complex topic. In so doing, we hoped to make essential first steps toward encouraging our students to become informed, articulate citizens. We hope that some might be encouraged to become more involved with the environmental issues directly affecting the health of their communities and ultimately the world at large.