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Unit 7: Biodiversity and Ecology

Standard LS2-1 Use mathematical and/or computational representations to support explanations of factors that affect carrying
capacity of ecosystems at different scales.
Standard LS2-2 Use mathematical representations to support and revise explanations based on evidence about factors affecting
biodiversity and populations in ecosystems of different scales
Standard LS2-6 Evaluate the claims, evidence, and reasoning that the complex interactions in ecosystems maintain relatively
consistent numbers and types of organisms in stable conditions, but changing conditions may result in a new
Standard LS2-7 Design, evaluate, and refine a solution for reducing the impacts of human activities on the environment and
Standard LS4-6 Create or revise a simulation to test a solution to mitigate adverse impacts of human activity on biodiversity.

Content/The Science
● Compare the definitions of species, populations, community, and ecosystem (LS2-1)
● Define biodiversity and explain why it is important to ecosystems & exponential and logistic growth. (LS2-1, LS2-2)
● Differentiate between biotic and abiotic factors & density-independent and density-dependent factors (LS2-1, LS2-2)
● Define carrying capacity and explain what factors limit the population from increasing past this point. (LS2-1)
● List and describe several ways humans have impacted the environment. (LS2-7, LS4-6)
● Predict and simulate the effects of various disturbances on an ecosystem (LS2-6)
● Propose a solution to mitigate the negative human impacts on an ecosystem (LS4-6, LS2-7)

Performance Emerging (5-6) Progressing (7) Meets (8) Exemplary (9-10)


3b. The student can The student can The student can The student can The student can ANALYZE
ANALYZE cause and IDENTIFY cause and GENERALIZE cause and ANALYZE cause and cause and effect relationships to
effect relationships to effect relationships to effect relationships to effect relationships to EXPLAIN outcomes in complex,
EXPLAIN outcomes in explain outcomes in explain outcomes in EXPLAIN outcomes in natural, and designed systems
complex, natural, and complex, natural, and complex, natural, and complex, natural, and WITH
designed systems. designed systems. designed systems. designed systems. EXCEPTIONAL DETAIL.

3c. The student can The student can LIST The student can The student can The student can CRITIQUE a
DESIGN or CHANGE possible changes to a ANTICIPATE the effects of a DESIGN or CHANGE a design or change to a system and
a system to cause system. changed system. system to cause EXPLAIN its varying effects.
varying effects. varying effects.

8c. The student can The student can The student can COMPARE The student can The student can DESIGN or
RECOGNIZE that CATEGORIZE a two systems to each other RECOGNIZE that ANALYZE systems for greater or
systems can be system by its stability by their stabilities. systems can be lesser stability.
designed for greater and IDENTIFY what designed for greater
or lesser stability. its stability entails. or lesser stability.

2b. The student can The student can The student can The student can The student can ANALYZE and
ANALYZE and STATE the patterns INTERPRET the patterns ANALYZE and INTERPRET the patterns of
INTERPRET of performance of of performance of INTERPRET patterns performance and apply it to a
patterns of designed systems. designed systems. The of performance of reengineered system. The
performance of student can PREDICT designed systems to student can critique a
designed systems to problems in the system REENGINEER and reengineered system and provide
REENGINEER and that may need IMPROVE the argument or justification for the
IMPROVE the improvement. system. application of the new system.
Scientific Practice/The Skill
● Constructing an Explanation
● Analyze and Interpreting Data
Scoring Emerging Progressing Meets Exemplary
1 2 3 4
Presents a general or Presents a clear controlling idea Presents and maintains a clear, Presents and maintains a
Controlling unclear controlling idea. with an uneven focus. specific controlling idea that precise, substantive controlling
Idea takes into account the idea that takes into account the
complexity of the topic. complexity of the topic and,
where appropriate,
acknowledges gaps in evidence
or information.

Includes details, examples, ~ Includes details, ~ Includes well​chosen

Includes minimal details and/or quotations from examples, and/or details, examples, and/or
Selection & from sources. sources that are relevant quotations from sources quotations from sources
Citation of to the controlling idea. that support the that fully support the
Evidence Sources are used without citation. controlling and supporting controlling and supporting
Inconsistently cites sources. ideas. ideas.
~ Consistently cites sources ~ Consistently cites sources
with minor formatting errors. using appropriate format.
Explanation of source material is Explains source material to Accurately explains source Thoroughly and accurately
Development irrelevant, incomplete, or support the controlling idea, material and how it supports the explains source material to
/Explanation of inaccurate. with some incomplete reasoning controlling idea. support and develop the
Sources or explanations. controlling idea.
Attempts to analyze data using Analyzes and explains data using Analyzes and explains data Analyzes and evaluates data
tools, technologies, and/or tools, technologies, and/or using tools, technologies, using tools, technologies,
Analyze & models (e.g., computational, models (e.g., computational, and/or models (e.g., and/or models (e.g.,
Interpret Data mathematical) in order to identify mathematical) in order to computational, mathematical) computational, mathematical)
patterns, to make scientific identify patterns, to make in order to identify patterns, to in order to identify patterns, to
claims, or to determine an reasonable scientific claims, or make reasonable and make reasonable and
optimal design solution. Analysis to determine an optimal design supported scientific claims, or well-supported scientific
or explanation includes major solution. Analysis or explanation to determine an optimal design claims, or to determine an
errors or omissions. includes minor errors or solution. optimal design solution.

The Final Product:

After researching the effects of an ​invasive species​ or the ​loss of a​ ​keystone species​, write a magazine article in which you analyze and
present data on its effects on biodiversity. ​Propose a solution​ to mitigate the impact of removing or introducing a species into an ecosystem,
providing evidence to clarify your analysis.

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