Yak’s Corner
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Front Page Talking Points

FOR THE WEEK OF APR 21, 2008

Common Core State Standard
SL.CCS.1/2/3/4 Grades 6-12: An essay of a current news event is provided for discussion to encourage participation, but also inspire the use of evidence to support logical claims using the main ideas of the article. Students must analyze background information provided about a current event within the news, draw out the main ideas and key details, and review different opinions on the issue. Then, students should present their own claims using facts and analysis for support.

Earth Day brings reminders of environmental gains and challenges

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1.gifFind coverage related to Earth Day or local actions to protect the environment. Discuss how these steps affect your community, school or family.

2.gifLook for a news item, photo or ad that involves a negative environmental impact and talk about possible ways of reducing it. Consider if the steps are practical, fair and have any drawbacks.

3.gifEarth Day is hardly the only time to appreciate nature and a pure environment. Search for an example of natural beauty in words or pictures in any part of the paper as part of coverage not directly related to this week's observance.

Environmental groups, elected officials, businesses, celebrities, musicians, students, religious leaders and Americans of all ages are participating in events this week to mark Earth Day, an awareness occasion held each April 22 since 1970 - a date that's sometimes called the birth of the modern environmental movement.
This year's observances began Sunday with a day of free events on the National Mall in Washington, DC and seven other cities. Community leaders from across the country on Monday visited U.S. House and Senate offices to discuss global warming and related issues.

Rallies, concerts, speeches and voter registration drives also are planned Tuesday on college campuses and in hundreds of communities, focusing mainly on actions to reduce global warming. Earth Day themes include ways to reduce harmful emissions from oil-based fuels - such as public transit, ride sharing, alternative fuels and using non-motorized transportation.
For its participation, a global lodging chain called W Hotels this week starts offering to lend guests free bicycles and helmets as an alternative to cars or taxis.

One message of Earth Day is that each of us can take small steps that add up to big benefits. Some schools plant trees to reduce carbon dioxide levels, secure the soil and beautify the landscape. Families may build a bird house or animal shelter. They also can use compact fluorescent bulbs, erect bird feeders and recycle yard clippings in a compost pile. At home, school and elsewhere, we can reduce, recycle and reuse materials to reduce trash.

Organizer says: "This Earth Day, it's time to change the forecast for global warming, Climate change must rise to the top of the national agenda this election year." - Kathleen Rogers, president of the nonprofit Earth Day Network

President Bush says: "As we observe Earth Day, we celebrate the rich blessings of our nation's natural resources, and we renew our commitment to protecting our environment so we leave our children and grandchildren a flourishing land." - 2007 presidential statement

Naturalist says: "Any time you can promote a better environment, a better place to live, it's an important message." -- Phil Costanzo, Frick Environmental Center in Pittsburgh

Front Page Talking Points is written by Felix Grabowski and Alan Stamm for NIEonline.com, Copyright 2014
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