sustainability MATTERS targets learning in Science 20 Unit D: Changes in Living Systems.

Find student learning sources and competency-based activities by scrolling down to the sustainability MATTERS topic banner on the LEARN webpage. This topic can be implemented through a project-based approach or by implementing the learning sources in each carousel slide as one-to-two class activities. The specific learning outcomes listed below are supported in sustainability MATTERS. Find a correlation of relevant outcomes to each activity in the Project and Activity Guide.

 

CONCEPTUAL KNOWLEDGE

20–D1.1k Investigate and analyze an aquatic or a terrestrial local ecosystem, distinguish between biotic and abiotic factors, describe how these factors affect population size and

  • Infer the abiotic effects on life; e.g., light, nutrients, water, temperature
  • Infer biotic interactions; e.g., predator-prey relationships, competition, symbiotic relationships
  • Infer the influence of biota on the local environment; e.g., microclimates, soil, nutrients

20–D1.2sts Explain that society and technology have both intended and unintended consequences for humans and the environment (SEC3) [ICT F2–4.8, F3–4.1]

  • Assess habitat loss and the responsibility of society to protect the environment for future generations
  • Analyze the need for habitat reclamation, such as recreating wetlands and swamps, forests, and prairie grasslands, and describe steps to ensure species diversity

20–D2.1k Outline the biogeochemical cycles of nitrogen, carbon, oxygen and water and, in general terms, describe their interconnectedness, building on knowledge of the hydrologic cycle from Science 10, Unit D

20–D2.2k Describe artificial and natural factors that affect the biogeochemical cycles:

  • Nitrogen cycle; e.g., automobile, agricultural and industrial contributions to NOx combining with water to produce nitric acid, nitrogen in manure and fertilizers
  • Carbon cycle; e.g., emissions of carbon oxides from extraction, distribution and combustion of fossil fuels, releases associated with deforestation and cement industries
  • Water cycle; e.g., extraction of ground water, dams for hydro-electricity and irrigation

20–D2.3k Analyze and describe how energy flows in an ecosystem, using the concepts of conservation of energy (second law of thermodynamics); energy input and output through trophic levels, food webs, chains and pyramids; and specific examples of autotrophs and heterotrophs

20–D2.4k Explain why population size and biomass are both directly related to the trophic level of the species and explain how trophic levels can be described in terms of pyramids of numbers, biomass or energy

20–D2.1sts Explain that science and technology have both intended and unintended consequences for humans and the environment (SEC3) [ICT F2–4.8, F3–4.1]

  • Assess whether the efforts to reduce human impact on biogeochemical cycles are viable, taking into consideration a variety of perspectives (considerations for deep-well and deep-ocean injection of wastes, for example, include properties of waste, concentration, uncertainty, environmental concerns, risks and benefits to human health and organisms, costs)
  • Evaluate the influence of society, and the impact of a variety of technologies, on the nitrogen cycle
  • Discuss the use of water by society, the impact such use has on water quality and quantity in ecosystems, and the need for water purification and conservation, considering such things as manufacturing, the oil industry, agricultural systems, the mining industry and domestic daily water consumption

20–D2.2sts Explain that science and technology are developed to meet societal needs and expand human capabilities (SEC1) [ICT F2–4.8]

  • Contrast the diet of people in developing countries and that of people in developed countries in terms of energy efficiency and environmental impact, and describe ways to address potential food shortages in the future

20–D3.5k Describe how factors including space, accumulation of wastes (e.g., salinization of soil), competition, technological innovations, irrigation practices (e.g., Hohokam farmers) and the availability of food impact the size of populations

 

PROCEDURAL KNOWLEDGE

20–D1.1s Formulate questions about observed relationships and plan investigations of questions, ideas, problems and issues

  • Design an experiment and identify specific variables to investigate relationships between biotic and abiotic elements of a micro-ecosystem (IP–NS2)

20–D1.2s Conduct investigations into relationships among observable variables and use a broad range of tools and techniques to gather and record data and information

  • Use library and electronic research tools to collect information on a given topic, such as: – protection of the environment as a priority over economic interest – sustainable development initiatives (PR–NS4) [ICT C1–4.1, C3–4.2]

20–D1.3s Analyze data and apply mathematical and conceptual models to develop and assess possible solutions

  • Analyze the information presented by opposing sides on an environmental issue, such as that of an environmental group and that of an industry representative, to determine bias (AI–NS4, AI–SEC1) [ICT C2–4.1, C2–4.2]
  • Identify new questions that arise from investigations, such as: “Should naturally occurring forest fires be fought?” (AI–NS5)

20–D1.4s Work collaboratively in addressing problems and apply the skills and conventions of science in communicating information and ideas and in assessing results

  • Elicit feedback from others on an environmental issue (CT–NS1)
  • Participate in a variety of electronic group formats to gather and share information about environmental issues (CT–NS1) [ICT C5–4.2]
  • Prepare a visual display that explains initiatives undertaken by industry to protect the environment (CT–NS2) [ICT P4–4.2]

20–D2.1s Formulate questions about observed relationships and plan investigations of questions, ideas, problems and issues

  • Predict disruptions in the nitrogen cycle that are caused by human activities (IP–NS3)

20–D2.2s Conduct investigations into relationships among observable variables and use a broad range of tools and techniques to gather and record data and information

  • Draw, by hand or using technology, annotated diagrams of energy flow in food chains, webs and pyramids (PR–NS4)

20–D2.4s work collaboratively in addressing problems and apply the skills and conventions of science in communicating information and ideas and in assessing results

  • Work cooperatively in a group to investigate the influence of human activities on the biogeochemical cycles and, using appropriate multimedia, present the findings (CT–SEC1, CT–SEC2) [ICT P3–4.1]

20–D3.3s Analyze data and apply mathematical and conceptual models to develop and assess possible solutions

  • Demonstrate and assess the effect of environmental factors on population growth curves (AI–NS2, AI–NS6) [ICT C7–4.2]
  • Apply the growth curve for open populations to identify the long-term impact on Earth’s carrying capacity and the demands on natural resources for a growing human population (AI–NS2, AI–NS4, AI–NS6)

20–D3.4s Work collaboratively in addressing problems and apply the skills and conventions of science in communicating information and ideas and in assessing results

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