[IAEP] What is a Lesson Plan?

Antoine van Gelder antoine at g7.org.za
Wed Jul 9 13:42:25 CEST 2008

On 09 Jul 2008, at 12:38, Bobby Powers wrote:

> On Wed, Jul 9, 2008 at 5:43 AM, Antoine van Gelder  
> <antoine at g7.org.za> wrote:
>> On 09 Jul 2008, at 06:07, Bobby Powers wrote:
>>> On a similar note, I'm an intern working on an activity for
>>> graphically modeling and simulating systems using System Dynamics.
>>> http://wiki.laptop.org/go/Model
>>> there are a ton of lesson plans and course materials, most free, for
>>> system dynamics lessons available:
>>> http://www.clexchange.org/lom/default.htm
>>> While my focus right now is getting the activity working and
>>> simulating, I've been following some of the threads about lesson  
>>> plans
>>> and lesson bundles with interest, as the easier it is for teachers  
>>> to
>>> integrate activities into coursework the faster things will get  
>>> picked
>>> up.
>> A single action, which - I believe - will contribute more to the  
>> task of
>> getting humanity on track to a sustainable present than any amount of
>> eight-course G8 dinners would be the creation of a SD simulator  
>> that can run
>> the models in this book:
>> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Limits_to_Growth [1]
> I agree that would be cool.  Lucky for us, there is a version of the
> World3 model that is freely available at:
> http://metasd.com/models/Library/Environment/World3/
> I believe the guy who runs that site (there are a fair amount of
> models on there) would be amenable to formally releasing them under a
> CC license.

That's great!

What file format are these in?

> Beyond simply providing the model, I think where we can really add
> something is in presenting the results.  Sure there are the classic
> graphs:
> http://muratopia.org/NUGW/FOCAS/Economy/world3.html
> but I think on the XO we could do something really interesting,
> perhaps even wrapped as a full-blown activity, to get people involved
> in the simulation.  I don't have any great ideas right now, but I'm
> sure with our collective wisdom we could come up with something!

One immediate thought that springs to mind for me when I think of XO's  
running world3 is networking the simulation so that each kid's machine  
is responsible for one part of the model. (Minister for Agriculture,  
Minister for Economics, Minister for Environment etc) It makes for an  
interesting experience when kids can see the effect that systemic  
behavior, which has a good outcome for their part of the system, has  
on the health of the whole which, in turn, eventually impacts their  
own part of the system as the feedback loop closes.

A really ambitious idea could be to replace the differential equations  
driving world3 with the output from an agent simulation such as  
SimCity-ish. (Hi Don! :-D)

I agree with you, the scope for drawing kids in is huge!

>> Go Bobby!
> Thanks for the support :)

I followed some links off http://wiki.laptop.org/go/Model and ended up  
coming across your http://t21-interface.sourceforge.net project.

I'd love to hear a bit about the lessons you learnt from that?

>> [1] Bonus points for getting the book relicensed under a CC  
>> license. Looking
>> at my copy I see that the copyright-holder is Dennis Meadows himself.
> I'll talk to some of my professors who know him.  Who knows, that
> would be awesome to be able to freely distribute.

It should be a compulsory part of any high school syllabus IMNSHO!

  - antoine

More information about the Its.an.education.project mailing list