What's the environmental impact of that cheeseburger you just ate? Empower yourself to make choices that are healthy for you and the planet.

About This Video

Grade level: 6-10
Length: 1.5 minutes
NGSS Disciplinary Core Ideas: MS-ESS3.A, MS-ESS3.C

In this video, we'll learn how simple food choices (like choosing beef vs. chicken for your next meal) can make a huge difference for the environment. Below are discussion questions you can use in the classroom in conjunction with this video to engage your students in thinking about their own food choices.


Video Discussion Questions

  1. How do the foods we eat and choices we make impact the environment?
  2. What would happen to our available resources if everyone on the planet cut their meat consumption in half?
  3. How does eating chicken instead of beef influence the water and land footprints of our diets?
  4. Why do you think beef is so resource-intensive?
  5. Is there a way farmers can raise cattle that is better for the environment?

Science Texts for Students

Use this resource to ground your understanding before integrating this video into your lesson. Alternatively, allow your students to practice close reading of scientific texts by passing out the article and the empty version of the chart—let them do the work!

Because the issues we're exploring in Flipside Science are complex, we've evaluated how the solution fares across three important dimensions: the environment, the economy, and society.

Accompanying Activity: Sustainable Food Solutions

Weighing the pros and cons

Weighing the Pros and Cons
How do we assess the benefits and drawbacks of various solutions to a problem? To decide how one potential solution compares to another, we have to consider the pros and cons of each from many dimensions, including environmental, social, cultural, and economic. In this activity, students will work together to map out the strengths and limitations of potential solutions to some important global food system issues.

Connections to the Next Generation Science Standards

While this video doesn't necessarily cover the following standards in depth, it is a compelling resource you can use to supplement your curriculum that does.

Disciplinary Core Ideas (Grades 6-8):

  • MS-ESS3.A: Natural Resources
  • MS-ESS3.C: Human Impacts on Earth Systems

Our Hungry Planet: About This Unit

To feed our growing world, we need innovative solutions. This unit explores environmental issues related to the food we grow and eat. We'll review topics from food waste to urban farming, and learn how simple choices we make impact our planet. This unit introduces students to the process of design thinking, and culminates in a design thinking challenge related to food systems issues.


How Much Water Do You Eat?
Wasting food also wastes water. In this activity, you'll learn why!

Can Meat Actually Be Eco-Friendly? Grist.org
Should we eat meat? This article asks the question in three different ways: in terms of environmental sustainability, morality, and practicality.

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