Learning to distinguish between things that are genuinely needed to live a healthy life and things that would be merely nice to have is an important step in understanding our relationship to consumption and sustainable living.
Using the ‘Smart by Nature:Needs and Wants Activity’ provided by the Center for Ecoliteracy’ creates thoughtful discussion about needs, wants, and values. The activity includes 32 color cards and instructions for educators.
People can choose how they will live and work together and how they will go about meeting their basic needs. Societies have very different ways of deciding what their needs are and how to meet them. (Adapted from the American Association for the Advancement of Science Benchmarks)
For younger students, use Gabriel Galimberti’s “Toy Stories” (http://www.gabrielegalimberti.com/projects/toys-2/#) as an accompanying resource.
For older students, we recommend you partner this activity with Sannah Kvist’s “All I Own” and Peter Menzel’s book “Material World: A Global Family Portrait”.