III. Essential Question

The Essential Question for this Project is:
How can we as individuals affect the world to create a more sustainable future?

Below are content specific guiding questions:


  • How will returning the Elwha River to a free-flowing state alter the ecosystem?
  • What is the current state of the ecosystem? What elements will change, and where or how should humans intervene in restoration?

Social Studies:

  • In addition to the environmental issues, what are the political and cultural aspects of this project? How have past and present laws impacted social norms?
  • How can the removal of the dams restore both respect for differing views and a healthy, biodiverse ecosystem?


  • Restoration work will involve more than salmon and plants. Humans are involved. And humans don’t always agree, because the process affects individuals in different ways, historically, in the present, and in the future.
  • What are their various stories?
  • How can we uncover and share these important stories with others?


  • In addition to helping gather baseline data of the watershed’s conditions prior to the dams’ removal, what is an effective way for teens to share the importance of this project with others?
  • In what ways might a documentary call their generation to action?
  • What does it mean to be the change?

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