Biology/Life Science

What factors affect the oxidation of apples?

Author(s): John Rivera, Lillian Seu, Juliet Rose Girard, Anthony Shiver

What factors affect the oxidation of apples?

Students observe the browning of apples after cut and being exposed to air and brainstorm ideas about why this might be happening.
Students think about ways to slow down or prevent the browning effect and in teams create and conduct a simple experiment to test their ideas.

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How does the pH environment affect bioavailability of Iron?

Author(s): John C. Rivera, Lillian Seu, Juliet Rose Girard, Anthony Shiver

How does the pH environment affect bioavailability of Iron?

Dietary minerals are available through ingestion of food and supplements.  In this lesson, students first examine the chemical reaction of two forms of iron, Fe0 and F+2 with various pH conditions of either the stomach or intestine to determine how it gets absorbed and eliminated in the body. Then students isolate iron from the foods we eat (such as cereal) using a magnet to attract elemental iron or Fe0.

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Forensics Crime Lab

Author(s): Molly Darragh, Maria Jenerik, Sarah Maifeld, Christopher McClendon

Forensics Crime Lab

A crime is staged in the classroom.  After observing the crime scene, student identify and collect crime scene evidence.  Students use blood typing analysis, microscopy, and chromatography to analyze the evidence.  The list of suspects is narrowed to identify the potential culprit. This lesson may be done in two parts or as one long session.

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Observing and Drawing the Structures of Guppies and Goldfish

Author(s): Jennifer Howard and Reba Howard

Observing and Drawing the Structures of Guppies and Goldfish

This lesson is a modifcation to FOSS Investigation #1 in the Animals 2 x2 unit.  In this version the students are observing both guppies and goldfish at the same time as their first introduction to the fish (where as in FOSS they have them look at them separately on separate days). Also, in this version, students not only observe, but learn to do drawings "like scientists".  They use new worksheets and write a few words about what they see.

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Meet an Aquatic Snail

Author(s): Jennifer Howard and Reba Howard

Meet an Aquatic Snail

In this lesson students will observe aquatic snails, create a realistic drawing of an aquatic snail, and create a class list of questions about aquatic snails.  This lesson is alternate or introductory lesson to the FOSS lesson on observing water snails.  Students begin and end the lesson as a whole group and observe either independently or in pairs.

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Pollination

Author(s): Anastasia Pickens and Arthur Millius

Pollination

This activity approaches pollination through: 1) a game to understand the role of the pollinator, 2) a flower dissection to understand the structure and function of flower parts, and 3) a video to see seed dispersal in action. Allow 2 sessions to complete

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Draw an Alien in its Natural Habitat

Author(s): Linda Akiyama

Draw an Alien in its Natural Habitat

This is an extension and assessment activity for the Unit, "What is a Living Thing, and How Does a Living Thing Respond to Changes in its Environment?"

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Student Designed Investigations Part 4 - Poster Presentations/Science Fair

Author(s): Linda Akiyama

Student Designed Investigations Part 4 - Poster Presentations/Science Fair

This lesson is from the unit, "What is a Living Thing, and How Does a Living Thing Respond to Its Environment?" The unit is designed to be taught prior to teaching the adopted FOSS curriculum on life sciences. In this unit students are given time to think about and discuss the fundamental question, "What is a Living Thing?" They are also introduced to a process for planning science investigations on the topic of how different living things interact with their environment. The unit ends with students deciding on a testable question, designing an investigation, doing the investigation, collecting data and drawing conclusions. Students then create poster presentations of  their investigation for a grade level science fair.

In this particular lesson, students create Poster presentations explaining their investigations. They use the posters to help them present their investigations to an audience of adults and children at a science fair.

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Student Designed Investigations Part 3 – Collecting Data and Drawing Conclusions

Author(s): Linda Akiyama

Student Designed Investigations Part 3 – Collecting Data and Drawing Conclusions

This lesson is from the unit, "What is a Living Thing, and How Does a Living Thing Respond to Its Environment?" The unit is designed to be taught prior to teaching the adopted FOSS curriculum on life sciences. In this unit students are given time to think about and discuss the fundamental question, "What is a Living Thing?" They are also introduced to a process for planning science investigations on the topic of how different living things interact with their environment. The unit ends with students deciding on a testable question, designing an investigation, doing the investigation, collecting data and drawing conclusions. Students then create poster presentations of  their investigation for a grade level science fair.

In this particular lesson, students work in pairs to carry out their investgations, collect data, and make inferences based on their data.

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Student Designed Investigations Part 2 – Testable Questions, Predictions, Materials and Procedures

Author(s): Linda Akiyama

Student Designed Investigations Part 2 – Testable Questions, Predictions, Materials and Procedures

This lesson is from the unit, "What is a Living Thing, and How Does a Living Thing Respond to Its Environment?" The unit is designed to be taught prior to teaching the adopted FOSS curriculum on life sciences. In this unit students are given time to think about and discuss the fundamental question, "What is a Living Thing?" They are also introduced to a process for planning science investigations on the topic of how different living things interact with their environment. The unit ends with students deciding on a testable question, designing an investigation, doing the investigation, collecting data and drawing conclusions. Students then create poster presentations of  their investigation for a grade level science fair.

In this particular lesson, students work in pairs to decide on a testable question, make predictions, choose materials, and plan a procedure.

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Student Designed Investigations Part 1 – Observations

Author(s): Linda Akiyama

Student Designed Investigations Part 1 – Observations

This lesson is from the unit, "What is a Living Thing and How Does a Living Thing Respond to Its Environment?", that is designed to be taught prior to teaching the adopted FOSS curriculum on life sciences. In this unit students are given time to think about and discuss the fundamental question, "What is a Living Thing?" They are also introduced to a method for doing their own science investigations on the topic of how different living things interact with their environment. The unit ends with students deciding on a testable question, designing an investigation, doing the investigation, collecting data and drawing conclusions. Students then create poster presentations of  their investigation and findings for a grade level science fair.

In Part 1 of this particular lesson, students work in pairs to observe a living organism and to brainstorm changes in the living thing's environment that would be important for the living organism to sense. They think about what structures their organism can use to sense and respond to its environment.

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Introducing the Process of Investigative Science Using Crayfish

Author(s): Linda Akiyama

Introducing the Process of Investigative Science Using Crayfish

Students will be introduced to the process of doing investigative science and will become familiar with vocabulary used in the process of doing science.  Given a testable question and a set of materials, students will make predictions, and then design procedures to create a "fair test "with teacher guidance. The class will investigate where a crayfish will go when put in a basin of water with a small shelter inside the basin.

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Introducing Cells

Author(s): Linda Akiyama

Introducing Cells

Students learn that all living things are made of cells. They use a microscope to look for evidence of plant cells(from onion) and animal cells(from human cheek).

This lesson is from the unit, "What is a Living Thing, and How Does a Living Thing Respond to Its Environment?" The unit is designed to supplement the adopted FOSS curriculum on life sciences. In this unit students are given time to think about and discuss the fundamental question, "What is a Living Thing?" They are also introduced to a process for planning science investigations on the topic of how different living things interact with their environment. The unit ends with students deciding on a testable question, designing an investigation, doing the investigation, collecting data and drawing conclusions. Students then create poster presentations of  their investigation for a grade level science fair.

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Living or Non-living?

Author(s): Linda Akiyama (adapted from SEP Architecture of Life -"What Is Life?" Lesson)

Living or Non-living?

Students will investigate different objects and discuss whether they are alive or not alive. Students are challenged to provide evidence for their decision and defend their opinion.

This is the second lesson of a unit (What are Living Things and How does a Living thing Respond to Its Environment?) that was designed to precedes teaching the adopted FOSS unit on life sciences. In this unit students are given time to think about and discuss the fundamental question, "What is a Living Thing?" They are also introduced to a method for doing their own science investigations on the topic of how different living things interact with their environment. The unit ends with students deciding on a testable question, designing an investigation, doing the investigation, collecting data and drawing conclusions. Students then create poster presentations of  their investigation and findings for a grade level science fair.

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What Do Living Things Have In Common?

Author(s): Linda Akiyama (adapted from SEP lesson)

What Do Living Things Have In Common?

Students work in teams to discuss the question "What do all living things have in common?" They record their ideas and share their background knowledge. Then the groups come together and try to reach consensus about the characteristics that all living things share by asking each other questions and defending their ideas.

This is the first lesson from the unit, "What is a Living Thing, and How Does a Living Thing Respond to Its Environment?" The unit is designed to supplement the adopted FOSS curriculum on life sciences. In this unit students are given time to think about and discuss the fundamental question, "What is a Living Thing?" They are also introduced to a process for planning science investigations on the topic of how different living things interact with their environment. The unit ends with students deciding on a testable question, designing an investigation, doing the investigation, collecting data and drawing conclusions. Students then create poster presentations of  their investigation for a grade level science fair.

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What is a Living Thing, and How Does a Living Thing Respond to Its Environment? - Unit Overview

Author(s): Linda Akiyama

What is a Living Thing, and How Does a Living Thing Respond to Its Environment? - Unit Overview

"What is a Living Thing and How Does a Living Thing Respond to Its Environment?" is a unit designed to be taught prior to teaching the adopted FOSS curriculum on life sciences. In this unit students are given time to think about and discuss the fundamental question, "What is a Living Thing?" They are also introduced to a process for planning science investigations on the topic of how different living things interact with their environment. The unit ends with students deciding on a testable question, designing an investigation, doing the investigation, collecting data and drawing conclusions. Students then create poster presentations of  their investigation for a grade level science fair.

UNIT: What is a Living Thing, and How Does a Living Thing Respond to Its Environment?

Lessons:

1) What Do Living Things Have in Common?

2) Living or Non-living?

3) Introducing Cells

4) Introducing the Process of Investigative Science

5) Student Designed Investigations Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4- A Living Thing Responds to Its Environment

Part 1 - Observation

Part 2 - Testable Questions, Predictions, Materials, and Procedures

Part 3 - Collection Data and Drawing Conclusions

Part 4 - Poster Presentations/Science Fair

6) Extension Activity - Draw an Alien in Its Natural Habitat

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Love in the Time of Cholera - Osmosis in action

Author(s): Amy Trusso, Brad Stohr, Stephen Floor, Greg Friedland

Love in the Time of Cholera - Osmosis in action

Students will first learn about the cause of cholera, and propose treatment options to save a hypothetical patient. They will then learn about the osmotic basis of the disease by using a simple dialysis tube/sucrose model for cholera diarrhea. Finally, they will discuss how osmosis can be harnessed to effectively treat the disease and how this treatment has saved millions of lives.

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Detecting Photosynthesis- Analyzing Other Scientists' Data

Author(s): SEP Staff (Architecture of Life Course)

Detecting Photosynthesis- Analyzing Other Scientists' Data

Students will analyze the results of another scientist's experiment by examining leaves that have been exposed to different treatments, and draw conclusions about the process of photosynthesis.

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Animal Skulls - A Guide to North American Species

Author(s)

Volume / Issue

Page(s)

Journal / Publisher

Pub date

Abstract / Description

Weblink

Mark Elbrock 27 Oct 2007

Skulls- Herbivores, Omnivores, and Carnivores

Author(s): Jen

Skulls- Herbivores, Omnivores, and Carnivores

Students familiarize themselves with different types of animal skulls and teeth.  From observation they learn to tell which skulls are those of herbivores, omnivores and carnivores.

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Recycling and Resources- In Progress

Author(s): Jen

Recycling and Resources- In ProgressView this entire lesson plan

Testing for Lipids, Proteins and Carbohydrates

Author(s): SEP staff (Chemistry of Life lesson)

Testing for Lipids, Proteins and Carbohydrates

Students will test a variety of food samples for the presence of lipids, proteins, simple and complex carbohydrates.

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Ocean Pollution & its effect on aquatic animals

Author(s): Mary Matyskiela, Lani Keller

Ocean Pollution & its effect on aquatic animals

Students brainstorm different sources of pollution.  Then, students make their own miniature ocean inside a water bottle, and pollute it with waste and oil to observe the effects on animals in the water.  A demonstration shows students the effect of oil on birds' feathers and discuss the consequences of oil spills for water birds.

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Measuring Calories in Food

Author(s): Luna Abdallah, Elinor Sullivan, Bethany Currin, Mathew Campana

Measuring Calories in Food

The lesson introduces the concept of calories and provides examples of high calorie and low calorie foods. Students learn a number of ways to determine how many calories a food item has and discuss how calories influence body weight. Students learn how to measure calories by constructing and using a calorimeter.

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Introducing the Process of Investigative Science Using Worms

Author(s): Linda Akiyama

Introducing the Process of Investigative Science Using Worms

Students are introduced to the process of investigative science through a guided inquiry activity. Given a testable question and materials, students as a class make predictions, and design an investigation with guidance from the teacher. Then in pairs, students do the investigation, collect data, draw conclusions, and discuss ways to improve on the investigative design.  After this activity, students will be able to develop independent investigations in this and other subject areas.

Students learn that a living thing can sense and respond to its environment.

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