It is important to spend some time with the class establishing the objectives of the unit and the rationale of why nature is worthwhile for the students to explore and appreciate. The concepts of learning about nature for survival and needing to spend time in and preserve nature in order to thrive will be discussed. The introduction will include a sampling of the various learning strategies used throughout the unit such as spending time outside, reading and viewing text, and writing. To this end, nonfiction texts along with poetry, short fiction and videos will be utilized. In the poem “Wildness is Everywhere” teacher and writer Stephanie Jimenez discusses growing up in Queens and not always appreciating the bits of nature she found there. The poetry of Mary Oliver can be so accessible for young teens, such as “This World” where she shares the simple beauty found at places like the beach. However, we also want to raise students' awareness regarding the danger to our earthly environment and ecosystems during the present time. In the short story “Autumntime” Anthony Lantini tells the story of a boy who lives in a future where he must go to a special museum to see a living tree. A short video like “Climate Change from a Kid’s Perspective” or “Introduction to Climate Change” could be used as a way to help students understand the magnitude and perils of global climate change. However, for young people the message should be one of hope and students can explore what young people can do to help care for the environment. The Osage legend “The Buffalo Bull and the Cedar Tree” demonstrates how the wise use of plants and animals is what enables humans to live well. The story is also an entry point into how many medicines have their origins in natural plants, and that “our relationship with plants can be used to explore the Native concept of balance.”4 Throughout the unit we will return to the theme of needing to spend time in, understand, care for and protect our environment.