Lesson 1


Introduction to Pollution


Kyle Niver

Grade 3

Length of lesson: 30-35 minutes

Content Standards:

Connecticut Science Content Standards

3.4 — Earth materials provide resources for all living things, but these resources are limited and should be conserved.

3.4.a. — Decisions made by individuals can affect the global supply of many resources.

Prior Knowledge: Students should be familiar with some areas in the topic from experiences in their daily lives.

Student Learning Objectives: Students will learn the various forms of pollution and how they impact nature throughout the world.


Domestic waste - garbage that is produced by families in their homes

Recycle - to convert into reusable material

Pollution - the contamination of the environment

Smog - a type of air pollution

Biodegradable waste - waste that may be broken down by other living organisms

Ecosystem - a biological environment consisting of all of the living organisms living in a particular area

Environment - the natural world

Global warming - the rising temperature of the Earth's atmosphere

Ozone layer - the layer of the Earth's atmosphere that absorbs the Sun's harmful rays

Renewable - a way to describe energy that cannot be depleted by use, such as water, wind, or solar power

Toxic waste - a material that can cause death or injury to living creatures

Assessment-Essential Key Question: Informal assessment will take place during the lesson, the KWL chart will be left on the board for future parts of the unit plan.


Technological resources: Computer with overhead project for video, Smartboard for KWL chart

Learning Activities:

Instructional Strategies: KWL Chart

Grouping Strategies: Whole-class participation of KWL chart on the board

Initiation: To initiate the lesson, ask students if they can remember when they have seen someone litter or if they have seen litter in public. Tell them a personal story of your own about litter or pollution that bothered you (I.E.: driving to the mall and getting a flat tire on trash that someone left in the street). Follow up with how today; we are going to learn about how pollution like this is negatively affecting our world.

Lesson Procedures:

1. Begin the lesson with a KWL chart and ask students about their knowledge of pollution/waste. Questions: What types of pollution have you seen? What areas of our environment can be polluted (ponds, rivers, streets, parks, etc)? Have students fill in their answers in the K section of the chart on the Smartboard.

2. For the W part of the chart, students will have to answer what new information they would like to learn about pollution and waste. Fill in student answers in the W section of the chart.

3. Play YouTube Video: A Day in the Life of Your Garbage and Recyclables. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Prigs6dLLCQ  After the video, discuss terminology/definitions and answer questions students may have.

4. Once students have discussed the video and are familiar with the vocabulary, have students fill in the L section of the chart, asking students what they have learned about pollution and waste, and if they have answers to their questions that came up during the W part of the chart in step 2.

Closure:  When students have finished the discussion, the KWL chart will be left on the board. In future lessons, information can be added to it, creating a more comprehensive list of information on the content.

Intervention:  Students with special needs and that require accommodations will be given assistance on an individual need basis.  

Extension:  Open a discussion, having students share personal experiences about pollution/waste they have seen outside of school.