Biodiversity Teacher Resources at UBC Education Library

Please visit the UBC Science Literacy Week 2020 LibGuide for even more books

E-Book Resources at Education Library

Teacher Resources

The school garden
curriculum: an integrated K-8 guide for discovering science, ecology, and whole-systems thinking / Kaci Rae Christopher.


green: the high school years: hands-on learning in grades 9-12 / edited by Tim Grant and Gail Littlejohn.


Climate Change in Practice: Topics with Group Exercises /
Robert Wilby


Learning for sustainability in times of accelerating change
 / edited by Arjen E.J. Wals and Peter Blaze Corcoran.


Connecting with nature: a naturalist’s perspective / Robert C. Stebbins

Emerging biology in the early years: how young children learn about the living world / Sue Dale


Nature sparks: connecting children to the natural world / Cross Aerial


Greening school grounds: creating habitats for learning / Tim Grant and Gail Littlejohn


Nature-based learning for young children: anytime, anywhere, on any budget / Julie Powers and Sheila Williams Ridge


Perfect pairs: using fiction & nonfiction picture books to teach life science, 3-5 /
Melissa Stewart and Nancy Chesley



You are the earth know your world so you can make it better
/ David Suzuki and Kathy Vanderlinden; art by Wallace Edwards; diagrams by Talent Pun


 into citizen science / Vic Kovacs


Rewilding: giving nature a second chance
/ Jane Drake and Ann Love


Sable Island: The Wandering Sandbar /
Wendy Kitts


Salmon Forest
/ David Suzuki


Picture books

Arctic Sky
/ Krykorka Vladyana


Over and under the snow / Kate Messner and Christopher Silas Neal


Over and under the pond / Kate Messner and Christopher Silas Neal


Flowers are calling / Rita Gray and
Kenard Pak


Two truths and a lie: it’s
alive! / Ammi-Joan Paquette and Laurie Ann Thompson


The girl who drew butterflies: how Maria
Merian’s art changed science / Joyce Sidman


The Underground habitats, by Molly


Wolf Island / Ian McAllister & Nicholas Read


Teacher Resources

A little bit of dirt: 55+ science and art activities to reconnect children with nature, by Asia


Environmental science activities
kit: ready-to-use lessons, labs, and worksheets for grades 7-12 / Michael L. Roa.



Tree of life: the incredible biodiversity of life on earth by Strauss, Rochelle; Thompson, Margot


Nowhere else
on Earth: standing tall for the Great Bear Rainforest / Caitlyn Vernon.


Biodiversity [6 pack] / Sandy Szeto

Xwi7xwa Library would like to thank Bronte Burnette, our recent student librarian, for all her hard work and contributions during her time with us!

Burnette moved to Vancouver from Montana and joined our team while working on her MLIS at UBC’s iSchool. She has since graduated from the program and is the Educational Resource Developer at the Centre for Teaching and Learning!

Although she will be missed, our team looks forward to collaborating with her in her new position! Bronte has left us us with a reflection on her time with us:

As I look at my time at Xwi7xwa Library, I see that every day I learned something new: from the staff, from the patrons, from conversations, and from moments that were set aside to really make sure I understood what I was doing. The projects I was assigned or created for myself gave me a solid foundation in disseminating Indigenous knowledge in a respectful way and illustrated the importance of reciprocity, community, and place in knowledge keeping. These three components are something that I will carry into all my career in librarianship, not just in roles working with Indigenous knowledge, but all knowledge.

I understood from previous work the importance of community involvement and hearing/seeing reciprocity at work in both my FNCC classes and at Xwi7xwa, I realized it’s importance in all librarianship, but especially academic librarianship and academic relationships. I want to print it out and put it on my figurative desk as I begin my work at CTLT, so I can see it every day. Learning about the importance of place though, and the importance of land is something that I didn’t expect. And now, it’s a part of knowledge keeping that I share with patrons in each reference interview I do. Place influences all knowledge; not just Indigenous knowledge, and it’s something that I think I could only fully learn and understand after working at Xwi7xwa. I don’t think a class would have given me the same view.

My favourite projects have been the online research guides and the blog posts because it’s been a way for me to share out our collection and resources without the barrier of a reference desk or a way to the library. And I love the fact that people can access them at any time, whether or not we are open. They gave me a chance to hone my librarianship skills too in searching databases, using Boolean, understand how to use Summon, and research skills in general. The blog posts gave me a challenge to learn a lot about what is actually in the collection, how many books and the kinds of books we have. It was one of the things that was something that I thought of as a “real” librarian job: selecting and highlighting books with short descriptions.

Learning from all the staff at the library has been the absolute highlight of my MLIS. Karleen has been a cheerleader, supporter, and advocate for me in all the best possible ways: challenging me in my work, asking for my help and opinion, guiding me, answering all of my many questions. She’s been the best supervisor I could ask for. Karleen’s attitude that librarians don’t just have a duty to fill information gaps, but can educate people is another idea that I want printed out for my desk. Bronwen, as my other half of our student librarian team, has been the most supportive co-worker in coursework and sharing projects at the branch, and having her learn with me has been a way she has taught me. Tamis taught me so much about communicating with patrons in reference interviews on the desk, and on the importance of making community and work-place connections. Eleanore showed me patience and kindness, whether it was answering my many questions about cataloguing and the collection, or teaching me a small amount of her knowledge on how collections/acquisitions work, even though I wasn’t a TS student librarian. Thanks for always encouraging my “Why is this an anthology?” questions. Kayla, though we didn’t work together for long, thank you for teaching me about data sovereignty and on the beginnings of how to build a course. Every conversation I had with Sarah left me with new knowledge of how to be a better librarian, up to our last zoom meeting. In our conversations, she illustrated to me different ways of thinking about knowledge keeping, and librarianship as a whole.

These words aren’t enough, but it has been a complete privilege to work with all the library staff at Xwi7xwa and learn from and with you all. I will be bringing all these teachings and much more with me to CTLT and in my career as a librarian. Thank you for the opportunity to work at Xwi7xwa with you all. I am honoured and humbled to have worked with you all in this important work.


Bronte Burnette

Starting September 15 2020, UBC Library is eliminating daily overdue fines on books, journals and audio-visual (AV) materials for all library users. Here are some other important points about the Library’s update on overdue fines:

  • Overdue fines for Course Reserve loans, Interlibrary loans and electronics will still apply when physical borrowing resumes.
  • Fines for overdue recalled items will remain in effect. Fines on a recalled item will accumulate once the item becomes overdue.
  • For overdue items that are not listed as Course Reserves and are not recalled, no overdue fines will accumulate for 28 days. Once an item is 28 days overdue, it will be deemed lost and a lost charge notice will be sent. If the item is returned, the lost charge will be dropped.

See UBC Library’s full announcement for complete information about changes to overdue fines. Please contact UBC Library Borrower Services or X̱wi7x̱wa Library Borrower Services with any questions or concerns about borrowing material or overdue fines.

Interested in learning more about library fine reduction and abolition? Check out these news articles:

Doing research about library overdue fines policies? Check out some of these selected resources to get started, but book a reference appointment for additional research help:

  • Ajayi, N. A., & Okunlola, A. A. (2005). Students’ perception of fine increases for overdue library books in an academic library. Journal of Librarianship and Information Science, 37(4), 187-193. doi:10.1177/0961000605057850
  • Crist, B., & DePriest, M. (2018). Removing barriers to access: Eliminating fines and fees for a win-win for your library and teens: Discover approaches to eliminating fines and fees for youth in your library. Young Adult Library Services, 17(1), 14.
  • Davies, R., & Sen, B. (2014). Overdue books at Leeds University Library. Journal of Librarianship and Information Science, 46(3), 226-242. doi:10.1177/0961000613486826
  • Helms, C. (2019). Eliminating overdue fines for undergraduates: A six-year review. Journal of Access Services, 16(4), 173-189. doi:10.1080/15367967.2019.1668793
As the school year is starting, it is not uncommon for students to experience some back-to-school IT challenges. The following blog lists the most common student IT questions. Topics covered include: – I can’t see my course in Canvas – I’m getting an error when logging in to my Student Email account – I’m getting […]

Science Literacy Week (September 21-27, 2020) showcases the many ways people of all ages can explore and enjoy the diversity of Canadian science, led by the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC). Libraries, museums, science centres, schools and not-for-profits will come together to celebrate this year’s theme, Biodiversity.

This year, UBC Library and UBC Okanagan Library are offering a wide variety of virtual events that you can take part in from the comfort of your own home.  Here’s a selection of what’s on offer from UBC Library:

What is that Wildflower?

Monday, September 21, 2020 (6:00pm – 6:30pm)

Join us for a 30-minute session exploring the search functions on Wildflower Search with Korean Studies Librarian Saeyong Kim and Reference Librarian Katherine Miller. This event is also kid-friendly, so the whole family can tune in to learn.

Citizen Science Tools workshop

Wednesday, September 23, 2020 (11:00am – 1:00pm)

This introductory workshop, Getting started with Citizen Science: a survey of tools and projects, presented by the UBC Library Research Commons, will teach participants about citizen science, and allow them time to experiment with some of the tools.

Origami instructional resources

Get access to instructions on how to create different origami animals with resources curated by the Asian Library. The origami instructions include the names for each animal in a number of languages including hən̓q̓əmin̓əm̓, Chinese, and Korean!

Biodiversity resource and recommendation lists

Various UBC Library branches and the Seed Library will be offering curated lists with book and film recommendations, activities you can do at home, and resources, all centred on the theme of biodiversity.

For more details about all the upcoming activities, please visit: UBC Library Guide to Science Literacy Week.


UPDATE : Access restored.

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Electronic Resources Help

Several Cambridge University Press (eBooks & eJournals) collections are down.

Links producing error messages. We are working on it.

Stay Tuned!

To celebrate Science Literacy Week, the Woodward/BMB Library team is sharing brief reviews of some of our favourite books on this year’s theme, biodiversity.


Braiding sweetgrass: Indigenous wisdom, scientific knowledge and the teachings of plants by Robin Wall Kimmerer

Braiding Sweetgrass beautifully blends personal stories with knowledge from many sources, asks questions, and prompts readers to learn from plants and Indigenous teachings. Reading Braiding Sweetgrass for me meant learning about pecan mast fruiting and other things I knew nothing about, but also hearing articulated some things that I grew up knowing but didn’t have words for. In 2020, seven years after it was published, Braiding Sweetgrass joined the New York Times best seller list and is being read by almost everyone I talk to across wildly varying fields, spreading mostly by word of mouth and by gift, which is how I too started reading it. I’m sure that there is a plant metaphor for such relational growth and generous sharing…  -Helen Brown

Watch the UBC Library website for information on an upcoming talk by Dr. Kimmerer, and please see the related resource list here:


An enchantment of birds: memories from a birder’s life by Richard Cannings

This autobiographical book by Richard Cannings is written primarily about many of the common birds we see in BC and the author’s memories with those birds. The book is divided into chapters, one for each of the thirty species of birds covered, accompanied by an illustration of the species. If you enjoy narrative nonfiction and want to learn more about the habits and long term population trends of birds in BC, this is a charming way to do so.                      -Eleri Staiger-Williams




Reaktion Books Animal series titles

If you’re fascinated by a particular animal, there is likely to be a book about it in the Animal series published by Reaktion Books. Going beyond science, these books delve into the animal’s place in history, literature, art, music, and popular culture. I recommend three titles written by UBC authors that are available online: Badger by Daniel Heath Justice (2015); Kingfisher by Ildiko Szabo (2019); and Polar Bear by Margery Fee (2019). But you don’t have to stop there; the Library has over 40 more titles in its print collection-Sally Taylor


Traditional and Indigenous knowledge systems in the modern era: a natural and applied science perspective edited by David R. Katerere, et al

This timely, recent collection of digital essays and case studies examines traditional and Indigenous knowledge systems from around the world. The volume is logically organized with cross-cultural comparisons and exploration of the intelligence inherent in Indigenous medical and health practices and viewpoints. The book’s natural science angle will be relevant for all science students interested in exploring knowledge systems and the insight they provide around climate change, changes to global ecosystems and the world’s food supply. A further strength of this volume are the diversity of Indigenous viewpoints and its contributions from BIPOC (Black, Indigenous and Persons of Colour) scholars from Africa, Europe, North America, Asia, and the West Indies. -Dean Giustini




Mountains: a very short introduction by Martin F. Price

My interest in this title stems from long mountain hikes and trail runs with friends where questions inevitably came up wondering whether or not the wildflowers bloomed earlier this year or if a glacier had receded more, and the larger question of how the warming climate might be impacting the mountains and the species who live there? This book provides an overview from mountain formations and life spans to their influence on the animals, the plants, and the people who live on and in their vicinity. Each section provides enough detail to answer basic questions while also introducing good jumping off points to dig deeper into a topic, such as glacial melt and its impact on human populations, or the survival of migrating birds like the broad-tailed hummingbird whose breeding season is being shortened because the flowers they depend on bloom earlier in the season. The book is chock full of mountain facts, referring to them as “biodiversity hotspots” as exemplified by Ecuador where “17,000 square kilometres of tropical mountain cloud forest contain 3,411 plant species” (p. 67). The book concludes with a section on climate change, and introduces research areas of forest management that can assist with carbon storage and opportunities for renewable energy. Other titles in the Very Short Introduction series include Climate Change, Forests, Waves, Coral Reefs, Savannas, Lakes, and Waves.   -Sarah Parker


Breaching the Peace: the Site C dam and a valley’s stand against big hydro by Sarah Katherine Cox

The imminent flooding of the Peace River Valley for the Site C Dam threatens a unique ecosystem with over 100 vulnerable species such as bull trout, Canada warbler, fishers and wolverines, as well as numerous outlier species. The region is a “northern Garden of Eden” and a key part of the Yellowstone to Yukon wildlife corridor. Flooding will also destroy dozens of sites of cultural significance to Indigenous people, prevent full exercise of Indigenous treaty rights, and submerge some of the best agricultural land in BC. Cox shares the heartbreaking details of all that may be lost and the struggle to preserve the valley. She also presents viable alternative energy sources to power BC – including wind, solar, and pumped storage hydro. Beautifully written and an essential read.  –Ursula Ellis



To learn more about biodiversity in BC, check out these other riveting reads available online from UBC Library:








As of September 15, 2020, UBC Library is eliminating daily overdue fines on books, journals and audio-visual (AV) materials for all library users. This policy shift will help users make the most of the library’s extensive physical collections without the added worry of incurring fees on items that aren’t in immediate demand.

Due to COVID-19, it is currently not possible to borrow Course Reserve loans, Interlibrary loans, and electronics such as laptops and other equipment from the library; however, when loans for these high-demand items resume, overdue fees will continue to apply.

Fines for materials that are overdue and have a recall placed on them will remain. Fines on recalled items start the day the item is overdue, not the day the recall was placed. Fines for materials deemed lost will also remain in effect.

For books, journals and AV materials that are not listed as Course Reserves, library users will receive an email reminder three days prior to the item’s due date. An overdue notice will be sent by email after one day and again at 7 days overdue. No fees will accumulate during this time. Once an item is 28 days overdue, it will be deemed lost and a lost charge notice will be sent. If the item is returned, the lost charge will be dropped.

For more details on the new fee structure, please visit the library’s Loan Policies and Fines webpage.

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