Social Studies Unit Overviews

Unit 1:  Our Fragile Earth
This unit develops students’ understanding about biodiversity, ecosystems, and related issues of sustainability, linking human action to these issues.
Students will understand that . . .

  • An ecosystem with high biodiversity tends to be more resilient; therefore human impact on these ecosystems determines the level of sustainability
  • Some of the earth’s resources are finite whereas others can be replenished or renewed; therefore, reducing our energy consumption can benefit ourselves, others, and the environment
  • Humans’ basic needs are met by goods and services provided by people using natural resources.


  • People, places and environments are interrelated. Therefore human actions can harm and/or help natural environments.

Ways to Help at Home

  • Encourage your child to talk about what they are learning about the concepts of ecosystems, sustainability, biodiversity (high and low), natural resources and impacts on the environment
  • Talk about ways that your family can help the natural environment – water saving, power savings, energy savings etc
  • Read with your child newspaper articles (that they may not be able to understand reading on their own) about biodiversity, sustainability, energy consumption, natural resource depletion, replenishment or renewal – as these are very big concepts for Grade 3 to be exposed to.