4. Extreme Environment Futures

Lesson Plans for Extreme Environments Futures

These learning activities cover everything in the IB guide for this topic. Lesson plans include resources to use on an interactive whiteboard and worksheets to print. The pages have full student access to give maximum flexibility to the teacher and the student. There are theoretical notes for extended reading and teacher notes at the top that provide timing information lesson objectives and activity instructions


The causes, acceleration, consequences and management of desertification, including land use, conflict and climate change

  • One case study illustrating the human and physical dimensions of desertification


This page provides and enormous amount of activities and resources on desertification, its causes acceleration, consequences and management. It introduces the concept with a simple flow chart activity and then develops student discussion based on a number of graphics and images based on the Sahel Region. It then goes on to look more specifically at the management strategies from the international to the local. It includes some fun and interactive activities including a graphic storyboard on the causes and solutions of desertification.


Increasing competition for access to resources in extreme environments, including the role of indigenous groups, civil society organizations, transnational corporations (TNCs) and militia groups

  • One case study to highlight the issues

Increasing International Competition in the Arctic Region

This page develops resources and lesson activities around the theme of increasing competition for resources in the Arctic. Its main focus is on how human activity including that of governments, TNCs and civic society groups  as well as indigenous groups have a role to play in determining the Arctic Region's future. The lesson begins with a focus on the Obama, Trump presidential change and what this means for the regions. There is an in-depth look at the Yamal Peninsula and how the Russian state, militia groups and and the TNC Gazprom have worked over time to expropriate land from the Nenet people. The activities include in-depth printable worksheets and bespoke article extracts and videos that develop the complexity of issues in a region that the Russians call 'a strategic energy battleground'.


New technology and sustainable development in extreme environments, including greater use of solar power and desalination

The impacts and management of global climate change in extreme environments, including adaptation by local populations.

New Technology and Sustainable Development

This page provides resources and lesson activities on new technologies and sustainable development in extreme environments. It begins with a look a definition of sustainable development and then student use the 5P model of sustainable development to mind map appropriate technologies. This is well supported with a gallery of examples including desalinisation and solor power. Students then work on the message based on contrasting infographics based on desalinisation before examining the sustainability challenges of two contrasting desalinisation examples based in Israel and Saudi Arabia. To evaluate it sustainability students are asked to apply it to the circular economy. Later students look again more appropriate technologies such as run-off capture. Students then look at the different possibilities of solar power and examine the appropriateness of Tunisia's Tu Nur Project from a perspective of neo-colonialism

Climate Change

This page develops resources and lesson activities around the theme of climate change in extreme environments. Students first begin by with mini-mystery based on craters in the Yamal Peninsula There is a short student investigation on the impacts of climate change in the Arctic and active reading exercise on the wider impacts for other regions. Students then go on to examine the the ways climate change can be managed at different scales of governance from the UN's SDGs to the adaptation of the Nenet indigenous group. Student then work on peer evaluated presentation on adaptation in the Sahel through using an amazing DFID resource for support.

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