This list supports the teaching of science through the topic of The World with a focus on conserving the World’s resources. Providing ideas and resources for linking aspects around The World to science topics such as: plants, water cycle, changing state, habitats, food chains, electricity and saving the rainforests.
Visit the primary resources for cross curricular topics webpage to access all resource lists:
Links and Resources
This resource is a super link into the understanding of the water cycle and the role played by evaporation and condensation.
In many countries around the world people are not fortunate enough to have the luxury of fridges and freezers and yet they live in very hot countries, so they have developed ways of preserving what food they have – often very little as many of these hotter countries are ‘developing ‘ countries. This activity provides a practical context to explore thermal insulation and changes of state. Families living in Sudan find that due to the warmer climate fruit and vegetables tend to not stay fresh for long. In order to solve this problem they use a clay pot (zeer pot) refrigerator to help delay the deterioration of fresh produce. This problem is introduced by a presentation, accompanied by a short video showing how a zeer pot works. Children are then challenged to work scientifically to investigate how long it takes an ice cube to melt in a mini ‘cool pot’ compared with an uninsulated pot.
This video uses a combination of live action and animation to examine the water cycle and the part played by evaporation and condensation.
This resource is based around a concept cartoon which explores pupils' ideas about water conservation. The prompts encourage discussion about water shortage, water supplies and the water cycle. This could then develop further with demonstrations of a model water cycle and then investigations into what effect different factors have on the rate of evaporation etc in the water cycle. and research into ways to conserve water.
In many areas of the World they do not have the fortune that we have in the UK ,of good soil conditions in which to grow crops, this resource provides a practical context to explore the requirements of plants for life and growth. Children are introduced to the ways in which local communities in Bangladesh successfully grow enough pumpkins for themselves and to sell to provide an income. This leads into an investigation in which children work scientifically setting up simple investigations, recording findings and observing the growth of seeds in sand and compost over time.
In many poorer parts of the world electricity is a valuable but rare resource which we in the UK take for granted. In developing countries charities are trying to support the local people by trying to create as many ways of generating and storing the electricity as possible.This activity shows how two metal plates and a person, can make a battery (cell). This helps to demonstrate how a solar photovoltaic cell works. A method of producing electricity which is often used in less developed countries. A solar cell has two electrodes. These have to be connected up to make a circle which we call an electrical circuit. One side is connected using wires and the other side is connected by way of an electrolyte. When students put their hands on the metal plate electrodes, they become the electrolyte. Current can flow through students' sweat and body fluids so a reading is seen on a milliAmmeter.
The activity helps to illustrate:
* electric circuits
* photovoltaic solar cells
If you are unable to access metal plates for the activity above this resource provides an alternative idea using hand crank examples which can be purchased from most primary science resource catalogues. Often you can find vegetable created electricity sets in bargain stores in the toy section or from established science providers and the Science Museum shop.
This resource contains lessons which link to various aspects of energy production and electricity. For example children find out how electricity can be produced and used by hand crank technology where they also identify the advantages and disadvantages of this method. Or by moving water where the activity looks at the advantages of a water wheel to power a generator and the children can then design, construct and test simple water wheels.
Destruction of habitats
The final activities in this resource give the children the opportunity to understand and become advocates for protecting ‘hotspot habitats’ to demonstrate how everybody can contribute to their survival.
Destruction of the rainforests
What is the common link between chocolate biscuits and orangutans? In this activity children learn about rainforests, their location, structure and some of the animals and plants that live in them. They look at rainforests in Sumatra and how deforestation has occurred in order to grow oil palm plantations and how this has affected Sumatran orangutans.
The children can research the reasons for and against the destruction of the rainforest habitats and the threats they are/have been faced with over the past few decades. What are the effects that this has had on the animals, plant and people who live in the rainforests and beyond the immediate environment to a more global potential impact . Is there a link between deforestation and climate change?