Australia’s fires: how can we envision 12 million acres?

My students can’t imagine an acre, let alone 12 million acres. And honestly, neither can I. So in thinking about how to share the latest news on the fires in Australia, I tried my best to link it to their own geographic range and experience. Many have not ever left the state, but they have a sense of the size of the state and where their own town sits within its borders. They also have a sense of the region, and neighboring states. I put these slides together to give them a sense of the magnitude of the fires in terms of geography, which can help as we discuss the ramifications on the fires to people, wildlife, and the landscape. I started with the definition of an acre, a measurement they do not use and unless they have an amount of acreage, can’t conceptualize. But most can imagine a football field, 1.32 acres in size.

I added some sources for them to explore:

Follow this link to learn more about where the fires are currently burning, see graphs, satellite imagery and read about why this fire season is worse due to highest temperatures and driest conditions.

Australia’s Hottest Day on Record

Australia’s Rising Temperatures

And some ways to help:

Things to Know and How to Help

How to help wildlife, fire fighters and evacuees

If you want a copy of the slide show, you can download it here. 



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