society

Should We Edit the Genome? forum

New tools—like "CRISPR"—are making it possible to edit DNA with great precision. Soon, we will be able to accurately alter targeted sections of the genome of other animals and plants, as well as our own DNA. But should we? In this forum, participants can discuss the positive and negative possibilities of altering genomes, along with their own hopes and fears around the technologies of synthetic biology.

Water Roll

This hands-on SustainABLE activity is meant to promote conversation about how water is distributed and used, and how we can work together to conserve this limited resource. In different parts of the country, guests may be familiar with different issues around water. For example, in some areas, purity of water may be more relevant to visitors than drought. (You can tailor the presentation of the activity to better reflect local concerns.) Players decide how they would distribute water between homes, farms and factories by sliding marbles down a tube into various containers.

Systems Scramble

This sustainability activity is meant to promote conversation about how systems work, and how we can work together to better understand systems and work toward creating a more sustainable future. Players will actively move around the activity space, figuring out their place in a system, and reevaluating as the system changes. This game it works especially well with camp or school groups. You need at least 8 players for this game, but you can modify it to play with fewer people.

My Community

In My Community, museum visitors can draw their neighborhoods and talk about what they like best or least about the places they live. They can check out the Changing Communities, and think of ways these spaces could be improved to help people, the planet, and the economy. Then, visitors can imagine how these solutions and others could be applied to their own neighborhoods, and change their drawings to make their neighborhoods better today and in the future.

High Five for the Future

What can you do today to help create a more sustainable world tomorrow? Visitors to High Five for the Future can write or draw their idea for a sustainable future, and take a photo of themselves high-fiving the future kid. You can share your photo and your idea on social media! #high5future

Future Builder

The Future Builder sustainability activity challenges visitors to build a tower representing a future community. Each card presents the players with a new part of their community to build—a school, park, gas station, museum, or something else—each with its own cost and reward. But players must balance their resources and construction carefully, meeting the needs of people, the planet, and the economy . . . or their community might be in for a crash!

Creative Reinvention

The Creative Reinvention sustainability activity shows visitors how common waste materials can be recycled, reused, and reinvented into brand new products—a process called the "circular economy." Activity cards ask visitors to guess what recycled materials were used to make various products, and challenge them to think of creative ways to reuse the waste materials in their homes.

Sustainability Training Materials

These materials will help prepare staff, volunteers, and collaborators for your SustainABLE event. The orientation PowerPoint presentation will introduce educators to the Sustainability in Science Museums project and the SustainABLE programming, and then walk through key concepts for engaging the public in sustainability, the SustainABLE activities, and additional available resources. Included with the presentation—in a separate pdf—are notes for the presenter.

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