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Ecology Teacher Resources
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Here is a 25-page plan that descirbes a series of lessons designed for third graders. In the plans, youngsters dive into the variety of Native American societies, and the vast array of ecological environments in which they existed. An astounding amount of wonderful in-class activities are described in these plans, and all of the worksheets you need to implement the plans are embedded in each. Highly recommended for any third grade study of Native American life.
Introduce youngsters to the term ecological footprint. Learners identify ways in which humans affect the environment. They look at the problems associated with the use of natural resources, and focus on ways to preserve natural environments and non-renewable energy sources. Some excellent streamed video, websites, activities, and worksheets are embedded in this nicely thought-out plan.
You will get much mileage out of this resource. It is three presentations in one! Standard general ecology information is included within these 69 slides. The first segment deals with levels of organization, biotic and abiotic factors, biomes, biodiversity, and the flow of energy. The second section focuses on nutrient cycles. The final installation examines population dynamics with an emphasis on problems accompanying overpopulation. The font may be considered "cute." This is easily altered if this is not to your liking. Otherwise, this is a terrific resource!
Keystone species of organisms define biological communities. Meet the American alligator as an example. Emerging ecologists also learn what happens is a keystone species is removed from an ecosystem: ecological release. Examples of this process include the sea urchin explosion that occurred when sea otter populations declined and a jack rabbit bombardment when ranchers killed off too many coyotes. Conclude the presentation with a discussion: Are we, as humans, undergoing an ecological release?
"Ecological Services" is a unique look at how natural ecosystems provide resources and supportive processes to sustain human life. It examines the value of food production, gases and water recycling, climate moderation, genetic records, pharmaceuticals, and even recreation. The conclusion of the presentation states that it is important to care for the web of life. This presentation would be powerful to show either at the beginning or on the final day of an ecology unit.
Eighth graders discover their own ecological footprint and create a plan for reducing this figure. They extend this to the school and community to see how they are doing on this scale. They discuss the concept of the ecological footprint and why it is an important benchmark.
Students make connections between their daily lives and the usage of natural resources as they relate to the importance of environmental quality. In this ecology lesson, students listen to the story The Lorax by Dr. Seuss and then discuss the impact of human actions on natural environments. Students explore how pollution affects wildlife and how water supply is connected to urban areas.
Seventh graders review the steps of ecological succession in a hardwood forest, and they review the concept of climax community. There job is to discover how succession works in other communities of living things. Students are reminded about biotic and abiotic factors and interdependence of species. They work in groups of four to create a mini-history lesson about the life in a community of living things spanning 100 years.
Young scholars identify how do geography and ecology influence a region's folklife. Then they investigate this question and consider how an outsider might view their own region in this lesson. Students also identify how the natural world, even in urban settings, influences how we view life, what materials are available for crafts, what occupations we choose, how our homes look.
Students investigate the physical, chemical and biological parameters necessary to establish an ecological baseline. Establishing an ecological baseline not only shows the ecological characteristics of a creek but makes the possible future environmental monitoring of the creek as human activities increase the stress on the system.