Summer Scholars 2003

 

Should Snowbowl Make Snow With Reclaimed Water?

 

This is the very question that currently faces the U.S. Forest Service – should Snowbowl make snow with reclaimed water?  I’m sure that in the past couple of months most of you have read about or heard about the snowmaking issue.  Some of you may have already formed an opinion of how the Forest Service should respond to the Snowbowl proposal.

 

The U.S. Forest Service manages the land that Snowbowl uses for its ski resort.  The land is considered public property; therefore the public must be consulted about decisions on how the land is used.  

 

In order for the Forest Service to make a decision about snowmaking on the peaks they have to allow for a public comment period and conduct an Environmental Impact Study (EIS).  The public comment period is designed to allow citizens and tribes to express their opinions about the action proposed by the Snowbowl.  During the public comment period many organizations and individuals voice their support or disagreement with the proposed action. 

 

As a Summer Scholars student and an active, informed citizen, you will be taking part in this public comment period.  Over the course of the next five days you will need to research the pros and cons of the proposed action (snowmaking on the Peaks) and arrive at an informed recommendation that you feel your tribe should make to the forest service.  Your recommendation will be posted on the Summer Scholars website for everyone (Tribal Government, Forest Service, etc) to review.  Work hard and Good Luck!!!

 

Enclosed is a copy of the letter from the Forest Service outlining the procedure for the public comment period and the proposal from Snowbowl.  Your student notebook also has newspaper articles and other resources to help you learn more about the issue.

 

1. Introduction to the Problem Log

 

The Problem Log will help you organize your ideas and develop good questions for further investigation.  Ideas from problem log will be discussed in various sessions of the Summer Scholars program.

Add additional notebook paper to the problem log as needed.  You should take notes during all group discussions, research sessions, field trips, special speakers, etc.  You should also be reflecting/writing about your thoughts throughout the week. 

In addition to the Problem Log, you will also be completing a Daily Journal that you will share with the Summer Scholars staff.  These Daily Journals will be returned to you after the staff has a chance to read them and respond to your thoughts.  You should keep your Daily Journals with your Problem Log.

Scientists take notes while they are investigating issues.  Learning to take good notes is also a skill that is important for college students.

2.  Introduction to the Problem

 

You have read about Snowbowl’s proposal concerning the use of reclaimed water to make snow.  Based on what you already know about the issue, what are your thoughts?

 

Thoughts

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3. Ideas / Facts / Learning Issues (Discussion Session 1 Monday)

 

We are going to discuss the issue of snowmaking and develop ideas, facts and learning issues (questions).  You should add pages to your problem log with notes from this discussion.  At the end of this discussion, your group will be assigned some learning issues to investigate.  Record your group’s learning issues below.

 

Learning Issues

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

4. Searching the Library

The library will provide a variety of resources, both print and digital to help you with your investigation.  Much of the information will be found using keywords or phrases to search in the library catalog and databases.  Try to find at least one magazine or journal article and one book that will provide information.  The librarians will help you.  You will have two opportunities to visit the library during the Summer Scholars program.

Keywords or phrases: 

 

For each reference found, record the following information.  You may also want to photocopy a few pages from a journal or book to take with you to read later.

          Title:                                                

          Author(s):

          Publisher and date of publication:

          Important information:

 

5. Analyzing the Readings (Sunday through Tuesday readings)

 

Based on all the reading you have done so far, list facts (not opinions) concerning making snow with reclaimed water.  Scientists often refer to facts as data.  Data are objective pieces of information.  They do not include interpretation.  Also identify opinions you have read and indicate whether or not you agree with the opinions.

 

Facts

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Opinions

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What is your opinion right now?  A scientist may have an opinion or a hypothesis early in the investigation, but he/she will keep an open mind and carefully consider all new information about the issue.

My Opinion

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

6. Searching the Internet

Many web sites may provide information about your problem or issue.  These sites can be found by searching the Internet using keywords or phrases.  Select some possible key words or phrases and go to the Summer Scholars web page to begin your search (http://www.nau.edu/eeop/)

 

Keywords or phrases: 

 

Organizing the Information from Your Internet Search

When you find a website that is relevant to your issue or problem, create a bookmark with the Internet browser so that you will be able to find the website again.  This bookmark file will also become part of your web page and recommendation.  You may also want to save the text from the website on your disk so you can review it later. 

 

          Internet site URL:

          Owner or controller of the site:

          Important information:

 

Printing Information from your Internet Search

You may want to print some of the information you find on the Internet in order to read it later.  You are allowed 25 pages for the week.  If you need more pages, discuss your needs with the Summer Scholars staff.

 

7. Using Information Found during Field Trips

You are going to visit various sites relevant to the issue you are investigating.  You will see places and hear from people.  As you participate in the field trips, record important ideas and how these might be used in the spaces below.  Add additional pages to the Problem Log as needed for each field trip.  Because you are concerned about the relevance and reliability of the information being shared, ask yourself where it came from, when it was created, and if there are any strong biases.  Bias is defined as a personal opinion, preference or prejudice.

 

Some of the field trips will include collecting scientific information on various water sources.  You need to review the data and think about what it means – how is it relevant to our investigation?

 

Idea/Information:

How might this be useful?


8. Ideas / Facts / Learning Issues (Discussion Session 2 (Wednesday))

 

We will continue discussing the issue of snowmaking and expanding on previous ideas, facts and learning issues (questions).  You should add pages to your problem log with notes from this discussion.  Your group will be responsible for continuing your investigation into the learning issues you have been assigned.  Make sure you understand your learning issues.

 

Thinking about Your Thinking (Metacognition)

 

As an investigator, what skills or attitudes will you need to bring to the investigation of this issue?

 

Expert problem solvers frequently examine their own thinking.  One thing they want to keep checking on is their own bias.  Bias is defined as a personal opinion, preference or prejudice.

 

Why is it important to know what biases you bring to the investigation of a problem? 

 

What are your personal biases as you approach this problem or issue?

 

Deepening Your Understanding of the Problem

Based on the committee discussions, your team was assigned a question or issue to investigate.  If the question seems big and complex, break it into smaller questions.  Answering the smaller questions will help answer the bigger question.

 

Your question or issue:

 

Smaller questions or issues:

 

9. Analyzing the Readings (Wednesday Readings)

 

Continue to critically review the assigned readings, as well as readings you have gathered from the library, Internet, etc.  Add pages to your problem log with facts and opinions that you identify from the readings.  Also reflect on your own opinions.  Are they changing as a result of your investigation?  Continue to be thoughtful about everything you learn regarding the issues.

 

10. Ideas / Facts / Learning Issues (Discussion Session 3 (Thursday))

 

We will continue discussing the issue of snowmaking and expanding on previous ideas, facts and learning issues (questions).  You should add pages to your problem log with notes from this discussion.  Your group will be responsible for continuing your investigation into the learning issues you have been assigned.

 

Your group will prepare a presentation to share what you know with the other students.

 
Summarizing What You Learned

After collecting relevant information, summarize what you have learned by answering the question or questions you wrote down at the beginning of your search.  Add additional pages to the Problem Log as needed.

 

Your question(s) or issues:

 

Your information so far:

 

Thinking about Your Thinking (Metacognition)

Expert problem solvers make sure the information they use is relevant and reliable.  

Relevant” means that the information directly applies to or answers your question(s).

How did you decide if the information you discovered was relevant? 

 

“Reliable” means that you can depend on the information to be true and without bias.

How did you decide if it was reliable? 

 

What clues at a Web site or in printed sources can help you decide if the information was relevant and/or reliable?

 

11. Analyzing the Readings (Thursday Readings)

 

Continue to critically review the assigned readings, as well as readings you have gathered from the library, Internet, etc.  Add pages to your problem log with facts and opinions that you identify from the readings.  Also reflect on your own opinions.  Are they changing as a result of your investigation?  Continue to be thoughtful about everything you learn regarding the issues.

 

12. Ideas / Facts / Learning Issues (Discussion Session 4 (Friday))

 

We will continue discussing the issue of snowmaking and expanding on previous ideas and facts.  You should add pages to your problem log with notes from this discussion. 

 

Your group will do a presentation to everyone on what you have learned during the week.

 

Our time for conducting the investigation is over.  Now we have to make a recommendation for the Tribal Leaders.  You may feel like you need more information, but you are going to do the best you can, with the information you have available.  While the recommendation is your opinion, you need to support your opinion with facts and information in order to make sure the Forest Service takes your opinion seriously.

 

13. Defining the Final Product or Solution – Your Recommendation

Your recommendation will be posted on the Summer Scholars website (http://www.nau.edu/eeop/).  The Summer Scholars staff has provided a template for you to use for creating your web page. Start writing down your ideas and information on a separate page.  When you are in the computer lab, you will construct a web page with your ideas.  In addition to the text, you will need some pictures and links to other websites with useful information.  You can use the template below to help write your recommendation.

You will write your recommendation using WORD, then transfer the text to one of the web page templates provided on the Summer Scholars web site.


RECOMMENDATION (Template)

Summer Scholars

(Replace the following questions with a summary of your Summer Scholars experience.)

  • Why did you attend Summer Scholars?
  • Why do you think Summer Scholars is important?
  • What did you get out of attending Summer Scholars?

Problem or Issue

(In your own words, explain the problem (issue) that you worked on during Summer Scholars.)

  • Should Snowbowl use reclaimed water to make snow?
  • How should the City of Flagstaff reclaimed water be used?

Positive Consequences (Pro)

(In your own words, explain the positive impacts of using reclaimed water to make snow.)

  • What are the economic benefits of using reclaimed water to make snow?
  • What are the positive health impacts to the people who live in the area?
  • What are the positive cultural impacts?
  • List all other benefits for using reclaimed water to make snow.

Negative Consequences (Con)

(In your own words, explain the negative impacts of using reclaimed water to make snow.)

  • How does the environment suffer as a result of using reclaimed water to make snow?
  • What are the economic disadvantages that result from using reclaimed water?
  • Does using reclaimed water to make snow have negative health impacts on the communities in the area?
  • What are the negative cultural issues of using reclaimed water to make snow?
  • List any other negative impacts from using reclaimed water to make snow.

Recommendation

(In your own words, explain and justify your recommendation.)

  • Provide information to support (justify) your recommendation.

 

 (This outline is just a recommended format.  If you have something better in mind, consult with the Summer Scholars staff.)

 

14. Thinking about Your Thinking – Self Evaluation (Metacognition)

Problem solving is challenging work.  What have you noticed about yourself during this process regarding each of these characteristics?

 

Put an “X” on the scales (lines) below that best indicates where you are during this investigation.

 

Persistence:  I keep on trying to find the answers or the solutions, even when the questions are hard or confusing.”

 

I give up easily                                                                                     I am very persistent

      

 

 

Accuracy: “My work is careful, exact, and without errors.”

 

My work is                                                                                                 My work is

quick & sloppy                                                                                                     precise & exact

      

 

 

Open-mindedness (unbiased): “I am open to the opinions or ideas of others.  My views can be changed when I learn more facts about an issue.”

 

My opinions                                        My opinions can                                  My opinions

cannot ever                                       be changed with                                  change very

be changed                                          good evidence                                                  easily

       

     

Thinking about Your Thinking (Metacognition)

Before you finish your recommendation or solution, think about the people who are affected by the problem.  What do they need to know?

 

CLARITY:  How will you make your work clear and understandable to everyone interested in this issue?

 

FAIRNESS:  How will you show that you’ve considered all sides or issues in the case?

 

15. Preparing Your Recommendations for Posting on the Web

After you have written out your ideas for your web page, the EEOP staff will help you get these ideas into HTML format so they can be posted on the Internet.

Your Web Page should have the following items:

  • Text – your recommendations and why this is a good or right thing to do
  • Pictures – from Summer Scholars sessions
  • Links – URL links to other web pages (Bookmarks file)

 

16. Documentation

You will be able to get a color print of your web page to take home with you.  You will also be able to keep a copy of your web page on your disk.

 

17. Oral Presentation

In addition to providing your recommendation via a web page, you need to present your ideas to the entire group.  You can use your web page as a visual aid and explain to the entire group your recommendation.