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Toni Ellis and Tom Scanlan

Toronto, Is Five Press, 1989. 52pp, paper, $9.50 (plus $2.50 shipping & handling), ISBN 0-920934-34-X
Distributed by Marvin Melnyk Associates Ltd., Box 220, Queenston, Ont. L0S 1L0. CIP

Grades 6 to 8/Ages 11 to 13
Reviewed by Fred Leicester.

Volume 18 Number 3
1990 May

It has been said that the environment will be the growth industry of the 1990s. Judging by the number of books about things environmental that have been published over the last year or so I would agree. This proliferation of "green" books has now moved into the field of education with school librarians being deluged by a plethora of titles.

The book under review is based on the premise that students can evaluate their present life-style at school, at home and in the community at large and learn practical ways to use our resources wisely. To this end the book is arranged in four main chapters: "Recycling," "Energy Management," 'Transportation" and "Waste Management." Each chapter contains a number of exercises that provide accurate information along with questions or activities. Although the exercises are not particularly exciting they certainly succeed in emphasizing the largely unexamined impact that our day-to-day living has on the environment.

For example, in the waste management section, students are asked to calculate how long it would take to fill their classroom with the garbage created by their families. A side bar on the same page tells us that Toronto's annual garbage would fill Exhibition Stadium to a height almost three times that of the CN Tower! Other activities in this same section ask students to analyze the amount of packaging used on supermarket items and to suggest ways of reducing excessive wrappings, while an analysis of school garbage focuses on the resources used in the manufacture of the discarded items, and whether or not these resources are renewable. The book has a useful glossary of environmental terms and black-and-white illustrations throughout.

The field studies and classroom exercises outlined in this book should prove useful to any teacher concerned about involving students directly with problems that are global in nature yet susceptible of local solutions. Recommended for upper intermediate and junior secondary students.

Fred Leicester, Golden, B.C.
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