Current Event for Discussion: Should we dump snow into Boston Harbor?

§ February 1st, 2011 § Filed under Current Events, English Language Arts, High School, Media criticism, Middle School, Science § No Comments

Photo by Patrick Whittemore — courtesy of

This winter, students are dodging larger-than-usual snow banks to get to school—and the snow piles are getting even bigger with today’s storm. Not only are pedestrians having trouble navigating icy sidewalks, but some drivers say they can’t see over snow banks.

As we bring out the shovels again today, many of us are wondering where we'll put all the snow. Senator Jack Hart has a solution: dump it into Boston Harbor. Although it can make things safer for drivers and pedestrians, dumping snow into the harbor is an environmental concern.

Read the Boston Herald article Pol: Dump wintry mix into harbor with your students. Then discuss the issue of safety vs. environmental responsibility with your class.

Key Discussion Points:

  • What has it been like for students to get to and from school with all of the recent snowstorms?
  • What are the experiences of students who walk, take the bus, and drive to school?
  • What are the positive and negative outcomes of dumping snow in the harbor?
  • Do students think snow should be dumped into the harbor? If so, under what circumstances?
  • Do students think the snow should remain on the sidewalks? Why?
  • Can anyone offer another solution?

This activity is designed for students in grades 8-12. It can complement science, English Language Arts, current events, and media criticism classes.

Please review the article prior to sharing it with your students, as the Boston Herald is written for all audiences.

If you need help finding the article for discussion, please contact Julie Burridge.

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