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The Environmental Cost of Staying Fashionable (Looking Beyond the Labels)

SUBJECTS Language Arts, Media, Social Studies, Visual Arts
GRADE LEVEL Intermediate (7-8) / Senior (9-12)
PLEDGE 1 - Protection of water

Resources Needed:

  1. Virtual Article: UN Launches Drive To Highlight Environmental Cost of Staying Fashionable
  2. Printable: UN Launches Drive To Highlight Environmental Cost of Staying Fashionable
  3. Text/image design application such as Canva and/or paper and markers
  4. See attachment for discussion questions handout and tag sample.
  5. Examples of clothing price tags and labels (optional)

Introduction:

  1. Ask students, What do we typically see on labels and tags on clothing when we are shopping? What do these tags and labels tell us about the story behind the clothing? What do they not tell us?
  2. Introduce or review the article, UN Launches Drive To Highlight Environmental Cost of Staying Fashionable
  3. Ask students to recount key quantitative information from the article, such as the amount of water needed to make one pair of jeans. Write responses on the board.

 

Lesson:

  1. With visual examples, review what information is usually included in price tags and clothing labels. Ask students: Given what they have learned from the article, do the price tag and clothing label at all represent or reveal the true cost of fashion? If necessary, prompt with a question, How much water is actually used?
  2. Record responses on the board and then challenge the students to create their own price tag and clothing label for one pair of jeans based on quantitative information from the article: economic, social and environmental costs of non-sustainable clothing. Students may choose to create by hand or with a graphic application such as Canva.

Follow Up Activities:

  1. Create a gallery walk of all student work by posting the price tags and clothing labels around the classroom or by taking photos of student work and creating slides for the class to view.
LESSON ATTACHMENTS