I’m back with another set of bookmarks for students and teachers. Because I’ve taught the IB Environmental systems and societies course for several years, this set of online resources is closest to my heart. Some of these links are here simply because I think they’re cool or fun. Many may also be applicable for studying biology and chemistry as well. Let’s get to it:
United States Census Bureau. Extensive database of global human populations. Can be used to create age-sex pyramids, as well as other applications.
Earth wind map. A cool interactive resource to check wind patterns in real time anywhere on the planet.
Wildlife survey field lab template. This PDF from the Florida Department of Environmental Protection has a good layout to help middle school teachers and students design their own field surveys.
GRID-Arendal Maps and Infographics Library. In association with UNEP. This is one of my favorite resources for teaching environmental science. Searchable by topic, keyword, or geography. All maps and images are free to share. Awesome!
Timelapse. Watch the world change over the course of nearly three decades of satellite photography.
We are 1 week from the summative unit test in grade 9 science, which means it’s time to start revising. Here’s a list of the major topics you’re likely to find on the test.
Cell structure and function
Plant vs animal
Energy flow through ecosystems
Nutrient cycles within ecosystems
Photosynthesis and respiration
Levels of organization
There will be several skills assessed on the test: recalling scientific facts (vocabulary and definitions, labeling diagrams), explaining scientific concepts, analyzing results, and evaluating trends in experimental data. Make sure you know this stuff well!
Biogeochemical cycles trace the movement of matter and nutrients through living organisms (“bio-“), planetary systems (“geo-“) and chemical reactions (“chemical”) throughout every part of Earth. The carbon cycle and the nitrogen cycle are possibly the 2 most important biogeochemical cycles on Earth. Here are a few fun videos to help you learn about these two essential cycles in our study of life and ecology.
First, a nice explanation of the carbon cycle:
Second, a little carbon music video:
Third, click on this link to BBC Bitesize Science for a very well-thought-out activity about the carbon cycle. It incorporates photosynthesis, respiration, biological molecules, and trophic levels.
Fifth, CrashCourse Science at YouTube offers us this entertaining and educational video about the nitrogen and phosphorus cycles (You don’t have to know about the phosphorus cycle in this class, but it’s helpful if you take more advanced biology courses):
I found this presentation while looking through some stuff over at Slideshare.net, which is a pretty good resource for school notes if you haven’t found it yet. The teacher for this class includes almost everything that we need to know about the differences between the movement of energy and nutrients through and within ecosystems, respectively.
The key points I want you to remember about this topic are as follows:
Energy enters, flows through, and leaves a system.
Nutrients cycle repeatedly within the system.
Most of the energy at any trophic level is lost before it can be used by the next trophic level.
Energy is lost 3 main ways:
waste (feces and tissue loss)
used for respiration
The video below is also fairly helpful. What I like about it is the blank energy and nutrient diagram he fills in as he moves through the ecosystem. It’s a nice approach to a possible future test question (hint, hint).
Image Credit: by Mark A. Hicks, illustrator, via school.discoveryeducation.com
I’ve heard this question a bunch of times already this week, and it’s only Tuesday morning! If you’ve been paying attention in class, you should already have a pretty good idea of what will be on the quiz. If you haven’t been paying attention, I’m going to give you a couple of hints in this post.
9A + 9C: Friday 4 October
9B: Monday 7 October
Criterion C1: Explaining Scientific Information
Level 1-2 Questions: Matching definitions with vocabulary, labeling diagrams
Level 3-4 Questions: Identifying and correcting True/False statements
Level 5-6 Questions: Describing and explaining scientific concepts.
Welcome to the biology unit, kids! I’ve added a couple of helpful documents to this post, which you will want to refer to as we move through our unit on the organization of life on Earth.
The first document, G9 Biology Vocabulary, is an outline of the major concepts in this unit. It’s basically a big list of important vocabulary words. I’ve intentionally left out the definitions, examples, and explanations, because that’s what you need to add – that’s how you learn! You should download this document and add to it as we cover different topics during the unit.
The second document, G9 Biology vocabulary matchup, is the collection of cards we used in class. You’ll find vocabulary terms and definitions organized into columns and sorted by topic. This will be a nice reference in case you miss something during a class.