BRING THE ADIRONDACKS INTO YOUR CLASSROOM


ADIRONDACK CHALLENGES

Birds & Biodiversity
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Grade: 10th Grade
Class: Living Environment
Author: Jeri Chapman
NYS Content Area Standard:
Math, Science & Technology:
Standard 4: Science
NYS Interdisciplinary Standard:
Adirondack Curriculum Content Area:
Natural History
Performance Indicators:

Key Idea 6:  Plants and animals depend on each other and their physical environment.

PI 6.1:  Explain factors that limit growth of individuals and populations.

PI 6.2:  Explain the importance of preserving diversity of species and habitats.

PI 6.3:  Explain how the living and nonliving environments change over time and respond to disturbances.

Key Idea 7: Human decisions and activities have had a profound impact on the physical and living environment.

PI 7.1:  Describe the range of interrelationships of humans with the living and nonliving environment.

PI 7.2:  Explain the impact of technological development and growth in the human population onthe living and nonliving environment.

Keywords: birds, biodiversity
The Challenge:
Investigative Question or Issue: What factors affect the biodiversity of bird communities in the Adirondacks?
Context:

Given the range of choice of potential "products" (poem, presentation, poster, skit, etc.) for this challenge, the teacher may want to discuss with students what "Criteria for Quality" will be used for assessing each of the products. This might be done as part of the preparation for the Challenge.

The Challenge:

We will be looking into the kinds of "factors" that may have an impact on the diversity of bird communities found in the Adirondacks. In your team of three, choose one of the following "factors" that interests you.No two groups in the class may have the same topic. The following factors are available for investigation: deforestation, development, invasive species, climate change, disturbance in wintering grounds or along migratory route, hunting, predators, food supply, pollution, nutrients, forest composition.

Read and discuss the resouces provided to you on your "factor" so that each group member understands its content fully.  Your group will be the class experts on the "factor" you have chosen.

As you investigate your "factor" please be sure to reach agreement on the following Focus Questions:

1) What do we mean when we talk about the "factor" you have chosen? How would you describe it to someone in the public?

2) Is your "factor" having an impact on bird communities in the Adirondacks? If so, which bird communities are affected and in what specific ways? What credible evidence supports your statements and conclusions?

3) What additional important information might we need to know in order to fully understand the connection between your chosen "factor" and bird communities in the Adirondacks? For instance, what might happen to bird communities if current patterns continue? Is there need for government action? Do we as individuals have any role to play on this issue?

Once you have completed your study, choose a means to share your findings with the rest of the class. You can choose to create a poster and present it, write and perform a brief skit, or write and recite a poem or story that effectively communicates your findings (poems or stories get 5 extra credit points).  It is crucial that your product/performance communicate accurate, essential information. Whatever product or performance you choose, be very sure you communicate the "must know" information to the class about your topic.

We expect that all group members will participate in the presentation of your work in some way. Further, all group members should be able to respond knowledgeably to any question from the teacher or audience about any aspect of the content of your topic.

All members of the audience will be filling out a worksheet at the end of each presentation/performance to ensure that they have received correct information. There will be a quiz regarding the information shared about all the "factors" presented.

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

Quality Standards:
  • Product/performance accurately describes the "factor".
  • Product/performance explains how the factor does/does not affect the biodiversity of birds.
  • Credible evidence is cited to support the statements or conclusions presented in the product/performance
  • Product/performance provides "must know" information to the audience regarding the topic
  • Each group member takes a part in the presentation of product/performance in some way
  • Each group member is able to respond knowledgeably to any question about the content of the product/performance
  • Product/performance meets all the "Criteria for Quality" agreed to in class.
Product Quality Checklist
Print This Checklist
Standard/Criteria: Points Possible: Points Awarded:

Product/performance accurately describes the "factor".

15

Product/performance explains how the factor does/does not affect the biodiversity of birds

15

Credible evidence is cited to support the statements or conclusions presented in the product/performancencludes 5 other important facts

15

Product/performance provides "must know" information to the audience regarding the topic

20

Each group member takes a part in the presentation of product/performance in some way

10

Each group member is able to respond knowledgeably to any question about the content of the product/performance

10

Product/performance meets all the "Criteria for Quality" agreed to in class.

15

Potential Bonus Points for Skit or Poem

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