EE Week Educator Webinar: Teaching About the Gulf Oil Spill
Originial Broadcast on Wednesday, February 23, 2011
On April 20, 2010, an explosion on the Deepwater Horizon oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico resulted in the largest offshore oil spill in U.S. history. Young people are asking their teachers and parents difficult questions about the causes and effects of the spill, and many educators have elected to focus on the Gulf Oil Spill as a unifying interdisciplinary theme to explore throughout the school year.
On February 23, 2011, registered National Environmental Education Week (EE Week) 2011 participants had the opportunity to interact with Dr. Robert Twilley of Louisiana State University's Department of Oceanography and Coastal Sciences, and Eliza Russell, director of education for the National Wildlife Federation (NWF) . Dr. Twilley provided information on the timeline and effects of the Gulf oil spill and answered questions its long-term consequences. Participants also learned about NWF's Oil Spill educational materials, service projects and how teachers and students can get involved.
Webinar ArchiveThe entire webinar (1 hour 19 minutes) is available for download. Both audio and video from the live broadcast are archived here. Materials referenced during the webinar may be downloaded from the links below.
Webinar MaterialsThese materials were presented or referred to during the webinar broadcast. You will need Adobe Reader to view the PDF files. Please visit our Oil Spill page for additional resources and curricula.
- To Drill or Not to Drill? An Examination of the Reliance and Risk is an Earth Day Network lesson plan developed for EE Week 2011. This lesson seeks to impart scientific and historical knowledge surrounding the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico in addition to other past spills. Students will examine how much oil was spilled into the Gulf and perform an assessment activity involving specific details about the reliance and risk of oil extraction from the ocean. Students will have an opportunity to further explore the multifaceted debate surrounding oil drilling and will be evaluated on their ability to develop and demonstrate informed opinions on the various economic and environmental challenges related to oceanic oil drilling. The lesson plan is designed for use in high school science and social studies classrooms.