Lesson 4: Research and Evaluate the Impact on the Environment and Society of Converting Natural Resources into PV Cells

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Melody Childers
Intended Grade Level(s):
Estimated Activity Length:
6 hours
Learning Goal(s):

1. Students will evaluate information to describe the impact on society from resource extraction and materials-processing for PV cells.

2. Students will communicate their understandings of different impacts from converting natural resources into PV cells through participation in a Socratic Seminar. 


Students will engage in guided research to explore resource acquisition, material processing, and electricity generation associated with photovoltaic cells. Opportunity for differentiation exists in the level of assistance in guiding the research, the language and reading level of the texts, the depth of research, and the product expected. The lesson plan is developed for assessing research notes and expression of understanding during a Socratic seminar, but one could easily adapt this research opportunity to meet writing requirements for a co-curricular collaboration. This lesson also provides an opportunity to shorten or lengthen the designated time by adjusting the scope of the research project.