This zip file contains all of the necessary powerpoints, webquests, activities, readings, and resources necessary to teach a great course: "The Future of Food: How will we feed a world of 9 billion+ in 2050?" it also contains a detailed syllabus.
The course is designed to last a few weeks/a month long or a condensed 2-3 all day intensive. It would be great for a middle or high school food systems and environmentally focused course. I designed the course for a "Scholar Weekend" course through Duke University for 8-11th graders. It contains 25-35 hours of resources, but it can easily be condensed and shortened, and teachers can select activities that they feel are most appropriate for their groups. It would also be great for a May-term or J-term elective intensive, or for an extension end-of-year course, or for a summer intensive course.
About the course:
How will we feed a rapidly growing population projected to reach 9 billion in 2050? Will we have enough land and water to make it happen? Can we feed the future without technology? If not, what technologies will make it possible? In this course, students will investigate the growing global food crisis. Worldwide we waste 40-50% of the food we produce, yet we project the need for food to double in 2050. This course will deeply analyze the challenges of feeding the world. We will evaluate current issues of food accessibility, food security and hunger in the United States and worldwide. We will research existing food production methods and trace the journeys of food from start to finish, analyzing the destruction caused to the environment during production and processing. We will critically investigate existing global food systems, different alternative food movements, current research innovations and technologies, biotechnology and bioengineering opportunities, food regulation policy and public perceptions. We will conceptualize the challenges of ensuring an abundant and safe food supply for a growing global population, including distribution barriers, water and land shortages, and the disintegrating health of the Earth. We will move on to consider the investment in nutritious food security as a preventative measure for greater societal issues of healthcare expenditures, poverty and crime. Students will leave the course action-oriented, with new knowledge and a sense of purpose and empowerment to join the ever-changing dialogue and research efforts.
Learning Objectives and Goals:
By the end of this course, students should be able to:
➢ Evaluate and articulate current issues of food accessibility, security and hunger in the United States and around the world.
➢ Analyze the costs and accessibility of nutritious food versus unhealthy food.
➢ Evaluate the carbon footprints of various common food products in the United States
➢ Utilize a global systems perspective to describe the journey of different foods from start to finish, including the growing, travel and production processes.
➢ Articulate the main factors of our current global food crisis, including water and land shortages, a rapidly growing world population and distribution
➢ Assess the pros and cons of common food production methods, including monoculture, polyculture, aquaculture, biotechnology, bioengineering, selective breeding, GMO crops, Hydroponics, farming the ocean, local food production, organic farming, city community gardens, and growing upwards.
➢ Investigate the controversial agricultural methods of biotechnology, bioengineering, selective breeding, and GMO organisms and crops, including government regulation, transparency and labeling and public perception.
➢ Consider the potential benefits and potential hazards of innovative food production technologies, as they relate to the destruction of our environment and climate change.
➢ Comprehensively apply the knowledge they have gathered about our current global food crisis and potential future agriculture and production technologies to design a plan for “the future of food” that will have the potential to feed a world population of 9 billion +, while conserving the earth’s health and natural resources.