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Sustainability Lesson Clearinghouse

How Loud is Too Loud?

Lesson Description:
Students will be able to…
- identify and describe ways noise pollution can impact an individual’s personal health.
- differentiate between the intensity of sound and an individual’s perception of loudness and relate these to the issue of noise pollution.
- develop an informational piece using both graphic and written formats that provides the viewer
with pertinent information about noise pollution.
Lesson Type:
  • Project

Sustainability Topic:
  • Other

Time Needed:
Two 45 minute sessions
Standards Addressed:
Science Standard 5: Understand the structure and function of cells and organisms.
  • Benchmark # 3: Know that the behavior of individual organisms is influenced by internal cues (e.g., hunger) and external cues (e.g., changes in the environment), and that humans and other organisms have sense that help them detect these cues (e.g., the sense of hearing can detect loud noise).

Science Standard 6: Understand relationships among organisms and their physical environment.
  • Benchmark # 4: Know that changes in the environment can have different effects on different organisms (e.g., some noises bothers all organisms, while other noises bother only some organisms, or none at all).
  • Benchmark # 5: Know that all organisms (including humans) cause change in their environments, and these changes can be beneficial or detrimental(e.g., some noise is so loud it can cause physical harm to living organisms).

Technology Standards: Understand the relationship among science, technology, society and the individual.
  • Benchmark # 5: Understand that technology may affect the environment both negatively and positively (e.g., a mass transit system may reduce the number of cars in the air, but may also increase the levels of noise pollution).

Health Standard 2: Know environmental and external factors that affect individual and community health.
  • Benchmark # 1: Know how the physical environment can impact personal health (e.g., the effects of exposure to various pollutants, such as noise pollution).
  • Benchmark # 2: Know how individuals, communities and states cooperate to control environmental problems and to maintain a healthy environment.

Geography Standard 18: Understand global development and environmental issues.
  • Benchmark # 3: Know how differences in perception affect people’s interpretations of the world.

Language Arts Standard 1: Use the general skills and strategies of the writing process.
  • Benchmark # 6: Use strategies (e.g., adapts focus, point of view, organization, form) to write for a variety of purposes (e.g., to inform, persuade, explain, record ideas).

Materials Needed:
  • Chart paper
  • Poster markers
  • Five sets of noise level cards
  • CD of pre-recorded sounds from decibel scale
  • CD player

School or Group:
Green Education Foundation (GEF)
Contact Email:
Lesson Documents:
application/pdf HowLoudis_TooLoud.pdf
Lesson Documents:
application/pdf NoisePollutionDecibel.pdf
Located in: Health

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