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Database Provider

Author

Grist

Grades

6th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th

Subjects

Science, Social Studies, Earth and Space Sciences, Geography, Engineering

Resource Type

  • Videos, 7 minutes, 55 seconds, CC, Subtitles

Regional Focus

North America, United States, USA - South, Louisiana

Format

YouTube Video

How New Orleans Sank Below Sea Level (And What They're Doing About It)

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Synopsis
  • This video describes how human-made seawalls, levees, and water pumps have caused New Orleans to sink below sea level over the past century. 
  • The video highlights the disproportionate effect this has had on low-income and minority neighborhoods. 
  • The video ends by discussing neighborhood and city-wide initiatives used to reduce the risk of flooding in New Orleans.
  • The video makes references to Hurricane Katrina and the Mississippi River.
Teaching Tips

Positives

  • The video draws attention to a variety of injustices, especially those affecting black communities. 
  • The video can be used in a wide variety of subjects, as it connects science, history, geography, and social-justice issues.

Additional Prerequisites

  • Students should be familiar with the location of New Orleans and the Mississippi River. 
  • It may be helpful to introduce students to basic concepts such as groundwater, infiltration, and subsidence.
  • There may be an ad before the video.

Differentiation

Scientist Notes
As the climate continues to warm, more and more people are at risk of flooding. This video resource uses New Orleans as an example of how one city is both mitigating and adapting to the risks of flooding. This resource is recommended for teaching.
Standards
  • Science
    • ESS3: Earth and Human Activity
      • MS-ESS3-3. Apply scientific principles to design a method for monitoring and minimizing a human impact on the environment.
      • HS-ESS3-4. Evaluate or refine a technological solution that reduces impacts of human activities on natural systems.
  • English Language Arts
    • Speaking & Listening (K-12)
      • SL.8.2 Analyze the purpose of information presented in diverse media and formats and evaluate the motives (e.g., social, commercial, political) behind its presentation.
  • Social Studies
    • Geography
      • SS.Geog2.a.m Analyze why populations increase or decrease in various regions throughout the world. Analyze the distribution of population patterns at various scales (e.g., local, state, country, region).
      • SS.Geog5.a.h Analyze the intentional and unintentional spatial consequences of human actions on the environment at the local, state, tribal, regional, country, and world levels.
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