Whose responsibility is it? *
National and State standards
discuss policies that are designed to guide the use and management of the earth's resources
develop plans to solve regional problems
Key words: Natural disasters
National and State standards: National # 18, State # 15.10.6
Teaching level: high
Objective/purpose: The student will:
Introduction: A significant portion of California is
a risky environment for buildings. Some of the risk
is due to their unique climate which causes smog in
the summer, fires in the Autumn, floods and mudflows
in the winter and of course earthquakes all year long.
As a result many Californians have what geographers
call a "disaster culture". They are so used
to minor climatic hazards that they can nor even think
about major disasters like earthquakes. The California
government has increasingly passed more and more legislation
that will protect people from the surprises that come
with natural disasters. Concerned citizens in that
state feel that this type of control inhibits their
constitutional rights of privacy. This lesson will
address those types of concern.
Divide the class into two debate teams
Give each team a synopsis of the Alquist-Priolo Special Studies Act (see attached) and have them debate the pros and cons of the plan.
Have a thoughtful discussion regarding how influential government should become in regards to geographic issues.
hottub water is green again, should government control the water flow?"
or some other significant geographic concern that the student population may have.
Reflection: How successful was this lesson? Did all students benefit? Were there any surprises? What might you do differently another time? Please note any changes that will make this lesson more effective and useful in the future and pass them along to the NHGA. We appreciate your comments.
*Based on Why not here?, Gersmehl, Philip , National Council for Geographic Education,Indiana,Pa.
Evaluation/assessment: Write a position paper on the question "My
Original file name: 308 (Converted) - converted on Tuesday, 20 October 1998, 20:56
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