Ecosystems of Gulf Coast - Wetlands, Rivers, and Estuaries
Stafford, Brent P.
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When students can't see the relevance of science concepts to their lives they lose the motivation to invest effort into learning. Without that effort, as any teacher knows, meaningful learning is lost and replaced by apathy or rote memorization. The motivation of this book is help students make connections between science concepts in the context of students' immediate environments and life experiences. Gulf coast communities are a spaghetti dish of rivers, streams, and bayous and bordered by coastal bays and seashores. Students live among these intertwined waterways and many have spent countless childhood hours fishing or hanging out at the beach or lakeside with their families. Many students may have experienced several floods, and most have probably eaten seafood from their local estuary. All of these experiences have a link-the flow of water throught the students' coastal watershed. By studying the science concepts outlined in national or state educational objectives in the context of the students' own coastal watershed, students can identify with the players involved in the concepts and the significance of connected systems. Put another way, the evidence supporting these concepts is local, tangible amd "real" and helps move concepts from the abstract to concrete.