Laura Le

Document Type

Internship Report

Publication Date

Fall 2015


In the context of studying sea level rise in Miami-Dade County and Biscayne Bay, classroom use of geospatial technologies can teach middle school students about environmental issues by providing tangible examples in their local environments. This project aims to improve the students’ understanding of how these environmental issues are relevant to their lives. To accomplish this, I created a 2 week-curriculum unit that incorporates ESRI’s Geographic Information System (GIS) software, ArcGIS Online SM and Story Map SM. These geospatial, web-based tools allow students to see and make geographic connections between impacts of sea level rise and the integrity of freshwater resources. The end product, a Story Map-based presentation, conveys what the students have learned by combining simple data and mapping technologies with storytelling elements, such as narrative text and digital media. With assistance from educators and using “Backward Design” principles, the curriculum was aligned with appropriate school standards and included elements of scaffolding to support students’ diverse learning abilities. Through these curricular activities, students tell an interactive “story” of how their way of life is connected to environmental issues. This curriculum unit maximizes classroom learning and promotes environmental stewardship among middle school students. Ultimately, the goal of this science outreach is to build capacity, foster mutual trust, and facilitate the students’ understanding of a focused topic.


Department: MAF

MPS Track: MCO

Location: Miami Waterkeeper

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