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Welcome to the Sustainability Lesson Clearinghouse

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Sustainability Lesson Clearinghouse

Cost Effectiveness of a Sustainable Building

Lesson Description:
Over the course of approximately two 50-minute classes, students will become familiar with the basic concepts of sustainable building. They will learn which changes can be made to a building for the smallest upfront cost and what reaps the largest long term benefits, financially and environmentally. The students will do this by beginning to design their own sustainable building on a tight budget.

After completing this lesson, students will be able to:
  • Define sustainable building and understand its benefits
  • Analyze the costs and benefits of certifying a school building as “green”
  • Create a plan to certify a new school building as green

Lesson Type:
  • Discussion
  • Group Work
  • Project

Sustainability Topic:
  • Green Building

GEF Program Category:
  • Green Building Program

Time Needed:
2 50-minute class periods
Standards Addressed:
This lesson addresses the following National Education Standards:

Content Standard: NM-NUM.9-12.2 Compute Fluently and Make Reasonable Estimates
As a result of activities in grades 9-12, all students should:
· develop fluency in operations with real numbers, vectors, and matrices, using mental computation or paper-and-pencil calculations for simple cases and technology for morecomplicated cases
· judge the reasonableness of numerical computations and their results.

Content Standard: NS.9-12.6 Personal and Social Perspectives
As a result of activities in grades 9-12, all students should develop understanding of
· Personal and community health
· Population growth
· Natural resources
· Environmental quality
· Natural and human-induced hazards
· Science and technology in local, national, and global challenges
Materials Needed:
· Computer and projector with internet access
· Chalkboard, whiteboard or equivalent
· Reproducible #1 - Plan of Action
· Reproducible #2 - Reflection Questions
School or Group:
Contact Email:
Located in: Science | Social Studies | Math

The Sustainability Lesson Clearinghouse is brought to you in partnership with

Center for Green Schools