Grade 5Science

Focus: In this unit students will focus on how humans can preserve and protect the many natural resources we use for modern life—for agriculture, transportation, industry, and daily needs. Students learn about our protection of

  • Water resources
  • Air and atmospheric health
  • Taking care of the land

Our use of water, air, and land can have negative effects on the environment, even when the resources are helpful to people across the world.

The erosion of land, acid rain, and air and water pollution are just some of the consequences that may result from the use of natural resources by a growing population. We can, however, draw upon scientific principles to monitor and protect the environment.

Students become aware that, through scientific practices and technology, we can detect when air, water, land, and ecosystems are changing and when they might be threatened. By applying scientific ideas, we can act to protect Earth’s resources and our environment.

This is a problem-based unit, which means that students build, over the course of all the lessons, to a culminating capstone activity. Every lesson is designed to help students publish or present their findings to their community.

Number of Lessons: 15

Lesson Time: 30–45 minutes daily. Each lesson may be divided into shorter segments.

Please note that certain lessons in this unit are designed for multiple days, resulting in approximately 17 days of instruction. For more information, please refer to the recommended Pacing Guide within the Teacher Guide.


Additional Search Terms:

natural resource • ecosystem • algal bloom • wastewater • water treatment plant • freshwater • groundwater • pollutant • stewardship • air pollution • smog • ozone • air quality • contaminated land • landfill • green space • no-till farming • biodegradable • biodiversity • nonfiction • informational text


CKSci Grade Levels: CKSci units are correlated to topics at the grade levels specified in the 2019 Core Knowledge Science Sequence.

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