Unit Plan: Field Study – Pond Bioblitz
Science / Grade 6
Multi-cellular organisms rely on internal systems to survive, reproduce, and interact with their environment.
Students will keep considering…
What is a living organism?
What do all organisms need for survival?
What adaptations help the organism survive in its environment?
What interactions do you observe –between organisms, and between the organism and environment?
How am I connected to the organism(s) I’ve experienced during field studies?
What does it mean to be a steward of the environment?
What is a system?
What does it mean to think using a systems approach?
How have I experienced ‘Systems’ at ODS? (e.g. in what ways is a pond a living system?)
How am I connected to ‘Systems’ in my everyday life?
Students will demonstrate their knowledge, skills & understanding by:
- collecting qualitative & quantitative data from the pond & surrounding area
- collecting organism samples
- exploring the pond in a sensory way (smell, hearing, sight)
- drawing a sketch of the pond
- demonstrating proper use of a hand lens or microscope
- observing organisms under a hand lens or microscope
- using a dichotomous key to identify different organisms
- making a list of species found (type & #)
- constructing a food chain
- learning information about pond organisms from Pond Critter cards
- pair-sharing observations, questions, reminds me…
- pair-sharing and group sharing of interview questions
- using observation and reasoning to make explanations about the health of the pond ecosystem
Teacher will monitor progress:
Teachers can monitor progress through ongoing formative assessment including but not limited to:
How will teachers and their students reflect on and evaluate the completed project?
- What aspects of the field study went well?
- What did students struggle with?
- What did you struggle with?
- What would you add/revise the next time you taught this field study?
- Were there any unintended outcomes?
- Were students engaged?
Field Study – Pond Bioblitz
In this field study, students will participate in a bioblitz, an event that focusses on finding and identifying as many organisms as possible within a certain time frame. First, students will explore a pond ecosystem and search for interesting organisms. Next, students will use a dichotomous key to identify which organisms are in the pond. Then, each student will select an organism to study and ask questions that can be answered through observation alone. They ask simple questions about the organism’s obvious structures, then move onto questions about organism’s behavior, habitat and relationships to other organisms. Students share out with partners and then the whole group how a pond organism relies on internal systems to survive, reproduce & interact in the environment (Reference: Beetles). Finally, students use collected data to make explanations about water quality, discuss some threats to wetlands, and examine their personal connection to water systems.
Related Big Ideas
The Big Ideas consist of generalizations and principles and the key concepts important in an area of learning. The Big Ideas represent what students will understand at the completion of the curriculum for their grade. They are intended to endure beyond a single grade and contribute to future understanding.
The set of abilities that students use to impart and exchange information, experiences and ideas, to explore the world around them, and to understand and effectively engage in the use of digital media
The knowledge, skills and processes we associate with intellectual development
The set of abilities that relate to students’ identity in the world, both as individuals and as members of their community and society
Curricular Competencies & Content
Curricular Competencies are the skills, strategies, and processes that students develop over time. They reflect the “Do” in the Know-Do-Understand model of curriculum. The Curricular Competencies are built on the thinking, communicating, and personal and social competencies relevant to disciplines that make up an area of learning.