Integrating Concepts in Life Sciences: The Components of Earth as a System: How Energy Flows Through an Ecosystem!

Julie Ruziska-Tiddy, Science, Carmel Middle School

Final Unit(pdf)   Implementing Teaching Standards(pdf)


Investigating Earth as a system and recognizing the interconnectedness of its components will facilitate our exploration of how energy flows through an ecosystem. We will incorporate digital and text resources as students focus on data analysis as a method of gaining a deeper understanding of the unit’s objectives. Students will complete a mini-project, Exploring Ecosystems, as a culminating project for our unit. Students will generate a series of food web simulations and analyze how abiotic and biotic factors influence species survival. This online activity will follow participatory games to introduce the concepts of food chains, food webs, and predator and prey feeding relationships. In keeping with district literacy goals, students will use a variety of close reading strategies to further their understanding of complex text. Text sets will include graphs, diagrams, and charts, online and written text. Students will work with a learning team during various activities and be held accountable for completed work with a Learning Team Evaluation.