BRING THE ADIRONDACKS INTO YOUR CLASSROOM


ADIRONDACK CHALLENGES

Biodiversity Threats
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Grade: 12th Grade
Class: AP Biology
Author: Katie Nash
NYS Content Area Standard:
Math, Science & Technology:
Standard 4: Science
NYS Interdisciplinary Standard:
Adirondack Curriculum Content Area:
Natural History
Performance Indicators:

AP Biology Key Ideas: VII. Interdependence in Nature VIII. Science, Technology and Society

Keywords: biodiversity, habitat, invasive species, technology
The Challenge:
Investigative Question or Issue: What does the public "need to know" about those forces that threaten the biodiversity of Adirondack habitats?
Context:

This challenge originally created by both Katie Nash & Jim Byrne

This challenge has great potential for integrating 21st Century technology into the learning process. Accordingly, the teacher will want to ensure that students have ready access to this technology - video cameras, digital cameras, podcast software, internet access, interactive whiteboards, templates for brochures, etc.

The Challenge:

The NY Department of Environmental Conservation has determined that the public must be better informed regarding the impact that habitat destruction, invasive species, overexploitation, and disruption of plant & animal networks are having on the biodiversity of the Adirondack region. They have hired your company of media consultants to create a series of public service announcements to promote greater public awareness of this issue.

Your team of four has been assigned to one of the biodiversity threats cited above (see bold). You have been asked to create a public service campaign that will provide area residents with the "need to know" information necessary for them to understand your biodiversity threat and help reduce or eliminate it.

The DEC wants your campaign to include two different strategies for reaching the public:

Stategy #1 - Local printed media - Create a trifold brochure, a full page announcement, or a printed flyer  that can be distributed throughout local communities using existing printed media (inserted into local newspapers, tourist guides, real estate advertising papers, etc.)

Strategy #2 - Regional digital media - Create a podcast, YouTube clip, or featured "spot" for a regional TV station that can reach the public using digital media. This production should be approximately 90 seconds in length.

As you create both your printed and digital products, please be sure they meet the following requirements:

  • Both products must be engaging, very informative, and persuasive. Be sure all the information you share is accurate
  • Both products must answer these focus questions fully:
    • What is the biodiversty threat you are addressing? Describe it. Show what it looks like.
    • What natural or human processes have contributed  to this problem?
    • What are a few obvious examples of your threat in action? Be specific.
    • What are some simple things the public can do to help? Be specific
  • - The language used in both products must be appropriate to a public audience. Assume that a middle school reading level is about right

You will have approximately two periods of access to the internet during class time to conduct research. As you conduct your research, each group member must keep an individual log of the information (s)he gathers and cite the resources used. At a minmum you should use three reliable soures of information. Each team member will be responsible for submitting a summary of his/her research notes and source citations at the conclusion of this project.

On the due date we establish in class, each team will present their work to us. Those products of particularly high quality will be published on line and shared with the school community through our school website.

Examples of Student Public Service Announcements

Product of the 2008 ACP Biodiversity Workshop, funded by a grant from the New York Biodiversity Research Institute.

Quality Standards:

Public Service Campaign:

  • Includes a printed product that can be distributed locally through existing printed media outlets
  • Includes a digital product that can be distributed regionally. This product is approximately 90 seconds in length
  • Is engaging - encourages viewer/reader attention
  • Is informative - provides essential, accurate, and relevant information
  • Is persuasive - stimulates thought and action
  • Answers all the focus questions fully
  • Employs language and images appropriate for a public audience
  • Is completed on time

Group process:

  • Each team member keeps a research log that includes a summary of the information gathered and appropriate citations of at least three reliable resources
  • Each team member contributes appropriately to the success of the final outcome of the project
Product Quality Checklist
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Standard/Criteria: Points Possible: Points Awarded:

Public Service Campaign

Includes a printed product that can be distributed locally through existing printed media outlets

10

Includes a digital product that can be distributed regionally. This product is approximately 90 seconds in length

10

Is engaging - encourages viewer/reader attention

5

Is informative - provides essential, accurate, and relevant information

5

Is persuasive - stimulates thought and action

5

Answers all the focus questions fully

30

Employs language and images appropriate for a public audience

5

Is completed on time

5

Group Process

Each team member keeps a research log that includes a summary of the information gathered and appropriate citations of at least three reliable resources

15

Each team member contributes appropriately to the success of the final outcome of the project

10

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