December 12, 2013
Who could have imagined that we would still be out of school and tomorrow is Thursday! So many of you have not turned in your assignment that was due last Friday! Go onto your Showbie accounts and see what messages I have left you about your First Predictions so you can make changes and get that out of the way. Then continue your work and turn the final copy into the Final- Ecosystems Predictions folders so I can grade them or send you information on how to improve them! Then call or text your friends and remind them to do the same thing! It is a great time to get caught up . . . I hope to see your work in Showbie tomorrow and I hope to see you in person on Friday!
December 10, 2013
I hope you are warm and cozy and safe. I just wanted to point out that you could be doing your Ecosystems Predictions assignment on your iPad if you have Internet access at home! They were due last Friday and I have very few turned in . . . so get those finished and then log into Showbie and turn it in! It will make the next week so much easier to have it all done!
Upcoming . . . a quiz on interactions between organisms such as predator/prey, primary consumer, mutualism, commensalism, parasitism. So be sure to review those different types of relationships!
See you tomorrow!
December 4, 2013
The next standard we are going to work on says: Construct an argument supported by empirical evidence that changes to physical or biological components of an ecosystem affect populations. That means we need to use numbers to show that changes to the ecosystem affects the population of organisms that live there.
To get started on this standard, we are going to learn about carrying capacity. Turn to the next blank page in your spiral. Title it: Carrying Capacity.
Go to Showbie to the Assignment called Carrying Capacity. Read the diagram called The Full Bucket until you understand what it means. Using it, write your best definition of carrying capacity. After you have written the definition in your own words, show it to Mrs. Stephens or the person she has said is the Carrying Capacity expert for the day. They will direct you to go to Socrative and continue this assignment.
December 3, 2013
Right now, in class, we are working on an assignment about using patterns to predict patterns about relationships between organisms in ecosystems. The students have made predictions based on patterns they know exist at Jackson-Frazier Wetlands or other places and then used that to predict what they will find in another ecosystem. They are using Keynote to record their predictions and what they find out. Then they are going to use the Internet to find out if what they predicted does exist in a different ecosystem that they are assigned! This assignment is due on Friday, Dec. 6th. They turn this assignment in using Showbie, another app on the iPad. So even if they don’t have Science on Fridays, they can turn in their finished assignment. They will have class time to work on the assignment on Tuesday and probably some time on Wednesday. They need to plan on not having class time on either Thursday or Friday.
Already, I am seeing interesting animals and plants as they find organisms that fit their predictions!
December 3, 2013
As another part of our standard on sensory receptors, we will have a quiz over that material. It will be multiple choice. Here is a study guide to help with that:
People have 5 senses. They are smell, touch, hearing, sight, and taste.
Sensory receptors pick up signals from the environment. They are the end of a nerve that respond to stimuli (signals) from around the organism. For example, the eyes can sense the amount of light or the nose can pick up different odors. Our sensory receptors include our eyes, nose, ears, tongue, and skin.
The messages about what is sensed are sent to the brain so the brain can act on them or store the information as memories.
Salmon have many of the same senses we do. But they have a sensory receptor that we do not have – that is the lateral line. This line runs down the side of its body and helps with senses like touch. Animals have lots of different kinds of sensory receptors.
Some animals have their sensory receptors in different places that people. Listen for examples shared in class!
Extra info . . .(this will not be on the quiz) There are other senses . . . some sources say there are 9, others have considered as many as 21. Here are the extra 4 to consider:
- Equilibrioception: Simply known as the sense of balance, it is perceived by the position of fluids in the inner ear and can be sent off kilter if one spins around in a circle too many times. Having a sensory faculty for the perception of balance is essential for any bipedal species to stay upright while walking.
- Proprioception: This is the perception of one’s body in space or the body’s position. Like equilibrioception, the data for this sensory faculty comes from within the body rather than from the environment. Proprioception is what a police officer tests when he or she pulls a driver over to the side of the road for suspicions of drunk driving.
- Thermoception: This sense, also known as the sense of heat, was once thought to be a simple variation on the sense of touch, but it is different as heat can be sensed without actually touching an object. For example, the heat that a fire produces can be sensed without actually touching the flames. Thermoception of external heat sources is quite distinct from the sensation of internal body temperature, which uses a different apparatus.
- Nociception: Nociception is the sensation of pain and was also previously believed to be a variation of touch. As with thermoception, it is not actually associated with the sense of touch for the same reason. Nociception has also sometimes been categorized as three senses rather than one because different receptors perceive pain on the skin, the joints and bones, and the body organs.
December 2, 2013
We have postponed the field trips planned for this Thursday and Friday – not so much for the kids sake but for the benefit of the little plants. With temperatures expected to be below freezing at night and barely above freezing during the day, Larkin is concerned that the little plants will just die and not have a chance to take root. She will look for dates in January to do the planting.
November 21, 2013
The Institute for Applied Ecology is planning a planting field trip for us to Jackson-Frazier Wetlands for Dec. 5th and 6th. It will probably be cold and it may be wet. We have boots here at school that students may wear for the class period. We will go during regular science class. Students will need warm jackets, socks, and gloves. Of course, they need long pants, too!
Would anyone be willing to have Hot Chocolate waiting for us and serve it? I would be happy to supply all the cups and hot chocolate if someone could be sure it it hot and serve it up for us! I think it would be very appreciated by students who have been out working in the cold. I also could use at least 1 parent each period to walk over and be with us as we do community serve project!
November 20, 2013
Assigned on Nov. 20th, the Invertebrate Sensory Homework is due next Tuesday on Nov. 26th.
The assignment is like the Salmon Sensory assignment – students need to choose an invertebrate and gather information about the sensory receptors of that organism. For example, can they see? Do they have eyes? How well do they see? Students may choose an invertebrate on their own or they may use an information sheet that Mrs. Stephens has available. There are also links below to the same information sheets that Mrs. Stephens has in class.
Students need to do a drawing of the organism in the center of the page. Use a link below or google to find how to draw the organism that you are doing. Put an outline around the organism and then divide the paper into 6 sections. Then fill in the 6 sections with information about the senses of that organism – it can be any kind of information about their senses, it can be the symbols to stand for what they sense in their environment or it can be information about how those senses work (for example, do they see in color? If they do, what colors do they see?). Also, include your resources for that information. Do Not Use sites like Wikianswers. Use sites that are connected to a reliable institution, such a zoos, aquariums, universities.
In order to score a 10, students need to have a hand drawn picture and 6 good pieces of information about the senses of that organism and be very professional looking. Don’t color the whole thing but a little color can really make it look nice. You may outline in Sharpie to make it look more professional but it is not required.
Butterfly senses information: http://www.enchantedlearning.com/subjects/butterfly/allabout/Senses.shtml
Honey Bee senses information: http://ag.arizona.edu/pubs/insects/ahb/inf6.html
Octopus senses information:http://www.octopusworlds.com/octopus-senses.html
Neuroscience for Kids – place to look for different organisms and their senses: http://faculty.washington.edu/chudler/amaze.html
November 4, 2013
The standard that we are working on right now says: Construct an explanation that predicts patterns of interactions among organisms across multiple ecosystems.
Key words for this standard (words to know to help on quizzes and assignments) are: predict, patterns, interactions, organisms, ecosystems, mutually beneficial, parasitism, symbiosis, mutualism, commensalism, predator/prey, competition.
November 4, 2013
We set up the page for homework during class on Monday. Students folded the paper so there were 4 columns and the paper was oriented to be landscape. Using the front and the back, 6 columns were labeled. The labels for the front were Both Benefit, One benefits and one is hurt, One benefits and one is not hurt or helped. The labels for the back were Competition, Predator/Prey, and Within their own kind. There are 2 leftover columns that students may lable as they need them.
The assignment is to identify 10 different relationships or interactions between organisms and write them in the correct category. For top points, students need 10 relationships across 6 categories. Students just need to write the names of the organisms involved and be sure they add enough that I can understand the relationship. For example, for predator/prey, they only need to write the a shark eats a salmon. They may need to include a brief explanation if it is an uncommon relationship.
Here is how the assignment will be graded. It is homework so it will go into the 10% portion of the student’s grade.
Your grade will depend on how many interactions you include. 5 relationships all in the same category will get the student 5 points.
6 points – 6 relationships in at least 2 categories
7 points – 7 relationships in at least 3 categories
8 points – 8 relationships in at least 4 categories
9 point – 9 relationships in at least 5 categories
10 – 10 relationships in at least 6 categories