Social Studies

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Sustainable Cities: Nature Based Solutions in Urban Design: Video | Nature Works Everywhere

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This video was created by The Nature Conservancy, with help from the Maryland Department of Natural Resources, the City of Winnipeg Water and Waste Department, and D.C. Water.

The following lesson plans are designed to be used with this video:

 

 

Adopting Sustainable Food Practices

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This video segment adapted from United Tribes Technical College looks at how the traditional subsistence practices of indigenous people were once sustainable, unlike today's lifestyles. Most foods are now produced and transported using methods that can damage the environment and contribute to climate change.

Rivers, Roads, Rails, and Air | Roads from WWII to the Present

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Learn how World War II meant funding was diverted to all but strategic roads and highways. After the war, the state had to play catch-up on road maintenance, helped by federal funding of the interstate system. In today's world, larger and heavier trucks are critical to transporting freight. In rural North Dakota, providing local transit for a growing senior citizen population is a big issue.

Rivers, Roads, Rails, and Air | Water Communication

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Learn how rivers already provided an avenue for the movement of goods and people in 1803 when Lewis and Clark traveled up the Missouri River to look for a waterway to the West.

The History of the Bobcat

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Learn about how the Keller brothers from Minnesota invented the first Bobcat loader, and built it using scrap metal.

Virtual Field Trip Video: China's Great Forests | Nature Works Everywhere

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Join our expert scientist Yue Wang, a conservation planning officer for The Nature Conservancy, on a virtual field trip across the world to two stunning provinces in China—Sichuan and Yunnan—where we will explore majestic forests, towering mountains, and other iconic landscapes. While examining the role these vital natural areas play in the carbon cycle and climate change, as well as the benefits of reforestation, we will learn about the magnificent creatures who call these habitats home: giant pandas, golden snub-nosed monkeys, and the elusive and odd-looking takin. 

Find a teacher's guide here to accompany this field trip.

Virtual Field Trip Video: Africa | Nature Works Everywhere

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Experience a virtual field trip to Africa to learn how locals are working together to restore forestlands, protect wildlife, and promote ecotourism, hosted by PBS LearningMedia, The Nature Conservancy, and field scientist Charles Oluchina. This event was originally recorded on Thursday, February 5, 2015.

Find a teacher's guide here to accompany this field trip.

Western Minnesota Steam Threshers Reunion, Rollag MN

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Since 1954, giant iron machines have been roaring back to life each Labor Day weekend in Rollag, Minnesota. The Western Minnesota Steam Thresher’s Reunion attracts thousands of visitors each year with its 210 acres of exhibits and demonstrations. Almost nothing is static, as workers have meticulously restored and revived vintage equipment. Enjoy a glimpse of the sights and sounds of Rollag.

Rivers, Roads, Rails, and Air | Individual Freedom

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Learn about the history of automobiles in North Dakota. The automobile age gave freedom of movement and choice for passengers and freight. With more people driving cars, the push came for better roads.

Grass Bridge

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The ancient Inca were a textile society and thus skilled in working with natural fibers including alpaca and cotton. Still, it might surprise people today that their solution to crossing the canyons and gorges of their mountainous empire featured another fibrous material: grass. When you consider how they built a simple suspension bridge, you'll realize that not only was this a practical solution, it was also a safe one. In this video segment adapted from NOVA, watch residents of the Peruvian Andes as they build a traditional and functioning grass bridge—the likes of which enabled the ancient Inca people to flourish for several hundred years.

How the Ancient Egyptian Pyramids Were Built

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Explore how and why the pyramids were built in ancient Egypt and analyze the architectural breakthroughs necessary to build ever-larger pyramids and the religious purpose for building them in these two video segments from NOVA: This Old Pyramid. Pyramids were more than monuments for the people who built them; they were doorways to the afterlife for the pharaoh.

Building Big | Arch Bridge

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The Romans were some of the most important innovators in structural design. Of their contributions, the arch and the bridges they built using an elegant shape stand out as the most creative and enduring. In this video segment adapted from Building Big, series host David Macaulay describes the forces and design features that give arches their strength.

Rivers, Roads, Rails, and Air | “A Reluctant and Homesick Pig”

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Learn about the history of steamboats on the Red River. Although its course meandered like a lost and homesick pig, the Red River of the North was a major artery for steamboats, which coordinated with stagecoaches from St. Paul to Fort Abercrombie.

Rivers, Roads, Rails, and Air | Peerless Transportation

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Learn about the role of railroads in North Dakota history. In their time, railroads had no peer in their ability to move people and goods, although shipping costs were high. The railroad companies helped increase immigration to North Dakota by actively marketing the opportunities here to foreigners, especially Scandinavians and Germans from Russia.

Rivers, Roads, Rails, and Air | Red River Oxcarts

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Learn about the Red River oxcarts that were the primary means of transporting goods from the Red River Valley to St. Paul.

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