Two Sides (or More)

We are learning about rocks in Earth Science. Last week I came across an article in the newspaper – a local version of the newspaper article linked here. I knew this would be a great article to bring into the classroom and today was my chance to do that. I posted this as our “In the News” bell-ringer and then talked about it as a class for  a few minutes. This article surprised me as I was expecting a little more science, or at least some description as to why candidates are suggesting a ban on fracking. To compensate for this, I found and showed this quick video to the class.

As much as the newspaper article leaned one direction, this video leaned the other. This was really interesting to teach with. After reading the article, the students were surprised that anyone would propose a ban on something that was so important to the economy. Once they watched the video, many of them felt the opposite. What a change!

My original intent with discussing the news article was to introduce the process of hydraulic fracturing as it related to our unit on rocks. What came out of this was so much more interesting! The students were faced with two conflicting feelings – a draw toward the economic benefits of this process and a desire to ban the process based on its harm to the environment. To see them working through this conflict was fascinating and FUN! This also brought many students’ hands to the air with questions. These questions were genuine and demonstrated thinking. This was a great exercise and I hope you can find a similar opportunity to bring news into your classroom. 🙂


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