HOW CAN WE USE OPTICS TO MAXIMIZE FOOD PRODUCTION? Grade 10 Science Activity

Food availability is limited in some regions of the world for many reasons, such as access to natural resources (sunlight, space, water, soil). Due to urbanization, access to fresh fruit and vegetables in urban areas is becoming more limited. How do we feed our communities and ensure food sustainably in an urban landscape?

In this inquiry-based activity, students will design and build a model of a greenhouse using mirrors and/or lenses that can be used to grow food all year. They will use their knowledge of optics to make their greenhouse more efficient (i.e., optimal temperature for plant growth).

*This activity can be used as a Course Culminating Activity as it allows students to demonstrate their proficiency in the following areas:

    Cells and Tissues (plants and plant growth)
    Chemical Reactions (pH of soil and acid-base reactions)
    Light and Optics (reflection and refraction through mirrors and lenses)
    Climate Change (influence of CO2 and temperature upon growth of plants)

INQUIRY FOCUS:
How can we use optics to maximize food production?

Keywords:
Reflection, refraction, pH, CO2, temperature, mirrors, lenses, plant growth

Written by DIANA NAUMOVSKI

This activity is part of STAO’s Connex Inquiry Resource Series

Click here to go to the complete resource

Set an Example – An Ecology Centre in Your Schoolyard

School_yard,_Gymnasium_No._1By>>> Canadian Wildlife Federation. Guess what? Your schoolyard is an ecosystem, too. It’s a great place for play at recess, but it can be much more than that. It’s a perfect spot to practise sustainable development. Why not use it to create an ecology study centre for wildlife?

With careful planning and management, your schoolyard can provide food and shelter for many small mammals and birds, attract helpful insects or grow plants that prevent erosion and keep the earth moist.* Continue reading