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Let's Ride Together

Theme: 
Transportation
Grade: 
1, 2
Essential questions
What causes traffic?
What can be done to reduce traffic?
What is the connection between transportation and air pollution?
How do emissions from transportation affect me?
What are the goals of public transportation?
How can public transportation help a community?

This module includes the following lessons:

Lesson 1: Eco-101: Traffic Jammin’ (Estimated time needed: 40 minutes)
In this lesson, students discover that when drivers carpool or use public transportation, they make driving more enjoyable by reducing traffic and creating fewer traffic jams. Each student “drives” a hula hoop “car” through routes set up in the classroom. By following routes that crisscross and pass through tight spaces, students cause traffic jams as they attempt to complete the route as many times as possible in a few minutes. Some students then park their cars and double or triple-up in one hula hoop and try the routes again with fewer cars on the road. Students can also hold two or three hula hoops together to create a “bus” with up to nine students on board. The lesson concludes with a reflection as students consider how having fewer vehicles on the road made the driving experience easier, safer, and more enjoyable.

Lesson 2: Eco-Activity: All Aboard! Estimated total time needed: 50 minutes
In this lesson, students learn more about public transportation options and how they help people get from here to there, especially in big cities. After getting to know these different forms of transportation, students discuss the benefits and challenges of public transportation and explore how public transportation systems affect life in the students’ own community (or a nearby large community). Finally, they are given the challenge of creating a map to show how people might use public transportation to get to a school. The lesson ends with students explaining their maps and how public transportation systems can help people move around in a city effectively.

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