Rain Forest Unit

Key Words: Curriculum Materials, Science, K-12


Earth Day is not too far away, but there is never a bad time to discuss environmental issues with your students. You don't have to go at it alone, though. There are several organizations made up of people who understand that our Earth's future lies in the hands of the children you teach. Students are never too young to become aware of what they can do to help.

Rain forests cover only 7% of the Earth's total land area, but they are home to more than half of all its living things. In one acre of mountain habitat, over 100 different species of trees may exist. Every second, humans wipe out an area of rain forest the size of two football fields. What can you do to help curb this destruction?

A great way to get started is by calling the Nature Conservancy at 1-800-84-ADOPT. This organization is fast, efficient, and able to help teachers with a variety of earth-related issues, especially the rain forest. The Conservancy offers wonderful tips on how your students can become involved, too.

Last year The Nature Conservancy and the Earth's Birthday Project raised more than $1,500,000 to protect rain forests in Costa Rica, Paraguay, and Belize. This year, the focus is on the Pantanal of Brazil, the world's largest continuous freshwater wetlands system. In the packet of information you will receive, there is a newsletter called the Rain Forest Report that is devoted to more information on the Pantanal. This includes size, location, species that live in the area, threats to the rain forest, and how you can help - all on the front page. Inside, you will find where your contributions go, how to inspire others to help, examples of what other classes have done, a teacher's guide to assist you in instilling the message, fund raisers, and a list of resources where you can go to receive more information.

The packet not only includes this newsletter, though. You will also get colorful posters of rain forests, some postcards, and many fact sheets. The Nature Conservancy tells you exactly why they are doing this, where the money goes, who manages the rain forests after you have adopted them, and how to receive more information on your acre.

Uploaded by: Jodi Gray/KSU/Deaf Education Major