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Evolution - Natural Selection and Evidence for Evolution

Last Updated: Apr-21-2010

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Developed By

  Julie Hilker
Debbie Danna
 

Lesson Title

  Evolution - Natural Selection and Evidence for Evolution
 

Length of Lesson

  Approximately 8 to 10 class periods (60 minutes each)
 

Lesson Unit

  Evolution
 

Grade

  9-12
 

Subject

  Science
 

Strand

  Biology
 

Michigan Content Expectations

  B2.4A (Cell Specialization), B3.4B (Changes in Ecosystems), B5.1A-B & c-g (Theory of Evolution), B5.3A-C & d-e (Natural Selection)
 

Keywords

  Evolution, Natural Selection, Adaptation, Embryology, Genetic Variation, Homologous Structures, Vestigial Structures, Speciation, Comparative Anatomy, Genetic Mutation, DNA, Geographic Distribution, Reproductive Isolation, Fossils
 

Materials

 

Textbook and Audio CD (Glencoe Science: Biology, McGraw-Hill, 2007)

Note cards (may be provided by students)

TurningPoint software and clicker response system for students

Creatensils Lab Sets (per group of 4)

Bag of mixed legumes (different sizes/shapes: lima, pinto, black, green peas, etc.)

Plastic utensils: 3 spoons, 3 forks, 3 knives, pair of chopsticks (usually only 1 per group)

Lab handout, graph paper, and rulers

Lecture notes and student handout to fill-in notes

Computers with Internet access

Moviemaker software

Flip Camera

Props for videos (provided by students)

 

Abstract

 

The following is designed as part of an evolution unit.  Students will participate in a pre-assessment, a lab activity, make vocabulary note cards, and listen to explanations by the teacher.  Students will then demonstrate their understanding of natural selection and evidence for evolution through the creation of a final project.  Students may choose between two topics and several methods of presentation.  Topics include natural selection and evidence for evolution.  Presentation methods include digital storytelling, video projects, and alternative methods (such as writing and performing a song or rap).

 

Big Idea(s)

 

1)    Evolution provides a scientific explanation for the history of life on Earth. 

2)    Evolution occurs as a consequence of natural selection. 

3)    Natural selection depends on variations between individuals, inheritable variations, overproduction, and reproductive success within a given environment. 

4)    Evidence for evolution exists in the form of the fossil record, comparative anatomy, comparative embryology, comparative biochemistry (DNA), and geographic distribution.

 

Essential Questions

 

1)    What is evolution and how does it work?

2)    How does natural selection influence evolution?

3)    What evidence supports the theory of evolution?

4)    How do fossils, comparative anatomy, comparative embryology, comparative biochemistry (DNA), and geographic distribution provide evidence for evolution?

 

 

Learning Objectives

 

Students should be able to:

1)    list the four principles of natural selection and discuss examples of each.

2)    demonstrate how natural selection can change a population.

3)    explain, using examples, how fossils, comparative anatomy, comparative embryology, comparative biochemistry (DNA), and geographic distribution provide evidence for evolution.

 

Summative Assessment

 

1)    Students will complete a project demonstrating how natural selection can change a population over time or explain how evidence exists that supports the theory of evolution.

2)    Students will take an end of unit test.


Resource(s) available for this section
 

Lesson Opening

 

1)    Students will watch a video clip titled, “Why Does Evolution Matter Now?” that can be found at http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/evolution/educators/teachstuds/svideos.html .  Students will then answer the question, “How do you think evolution occurs?” in their journal.  Hopefully, students will become engaged in how evolution is relevant to them and become interested in learning more about how evolution works.

2)    Students will use their clickers to answer the pre-assessment questions on the PowerPoint.

 


Resource(s) available for this section
 

Lesson Opening Co-teaching Plan

 

Both teachers will actively assist students who are having difficulty by circulating to monitor progress and answer questions.

 

Exploration

 

These activities will be completed on different days.

 

1)    Create four-part vocabulary note cards

·          Read textbook or listen to audio version to locate vocabulary terms and determine what each word means.  Directions will be provided and examples of previously completed note cards can be shown to students.

2)    Lecture notes

·          Students will take notes as the teacher explains difficult concepts within the chapter.  A fill-in notes handout is available.  Students can then focus on listening, highlighting key concepts, and asking clarifying questions.

3)    Creatensils Lab

·          Students serve as the competitors in this natural selection lab activity.  Students will each begin with a different utensil and compete for food (beans) to determine the best fit individuals (utensils).  Students will graph their results and then answer several questions discussing the connection between this lab and natural selection, adaptation, and fitness.

4)    Students will have a list of websites to explore to help them complete their projects.

·          PBS Evolution - http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/evolution/

·          NOVA Evolution - http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/beta/evolution/

·          Lot of evolution topics (University of California Museum of Paleontology)  - http://evolution.berkeley.edu/

·          The Why Files (University of Wisconsin) - http://whyfiles.org/095evolution/2.html

·          Evidence of Evolution - http://anthro.palomar.edu/evolve/evolve_3.htm

·          Evidence for Evolution - http://txtwriter.com/Backgrounders/Evolution/EVcontents.html

·          Evolution and Natural Selection - http://www.globalchange.umich.edu/globalchange1/current/lectures/selection/selection.html

·          Natural Selection: How evolution works - http://www.actionbioscience.org/evolution/futuyma.html

·          Evolution 101: Natural Selection - http://evolution.berkeley.edu/evosite/evo101/IIIENaturalSelection.shtml

·          Simpsons Evolution Video:

§   http://www.teachertube.com/viewVideo.php?video_id=168154&title=Simpsons_Evolution&vpkey=

·          Evolution of a Giraffe Gone Wrong (Claymation)

§   http://www.teachertube.com/viewVideo.php?video_id=22117&title=Lamarks_theory_of_evolution_gone_a_bit_wrong&vpkey=&album_id=

·          Example of Natural Selection

§   http://www.teachertube.com/viewVideo.php?video_id=115745&title=Example_of_Natural_Selection

·          Crash Course in Evolution

§   http://www.teachertube.com/viewVideo.php?video_id=26827&title=Crash_Course_in_Evolution

·          Evolution is REAL (Higher Level)

§   http://www.teachertube.com/viewVideo.php?video_id=36265&title=Evolution_is_REAL_Science_2

 


Resource(s) available for this section
 

Exploration Co-teaching Plan

 

Both teachers will actively assist students who are having difficulty by circulating to monitor progress and answer questions.

 

 

Check for Understanding

 

Both the teacher and students will have multiple opportunities to check for understanding.  Note cards can be collected, in addition to the Creatensils Lab assessment questions.

 

After students have completed their note cards, reading the appropriate section in the text, lecture notes, and the Creatensils Lab, they will take a quiz using the clickers.  This quiz may not be graded, but it provides the students with an accurate assessment of their own understanding, and helps the teacher identify any areas of concern.

 

 

Check for Understanding Co-teaching Plan

 

Both teachers will actively assist students who are having difficulty by circulating to monitor progress and answer questions.

 

Explanation

 

Students will be given structured time during class to work on note cards, and complete the Creatensils Lab.  Both oral and written directions will be provided.  For the Creatensils Lab, students will be discreetly divided into mixed-ability level groups.

 

During the final project, students will work in pairs.  They will have access to computers to complete additional research, search for pictures for their projects, and access their student drives.  All handouts will also be linked to the teacher’s website for easy access.  Websites of multiple reading levels will be provided for the students, which should allow all students to find information about their topic that they can understand.  Students will complete their informational handout and storyboard before creating their project.  Students will check in with the teacher as they complete each step and the teacher will record this on her checklist.  This should increase the quality of the projects. 

 

            Storyboard templates can be found at: http://www.jasonohler.com/pdfs/storyboard_template.pdf

 

 

If any students finish early, they may explore the websites listed under “Extended Practice,” study for their unit test, or become “technical advisors” for other groups.  As technical advisors, they may be recommended by the teacher to help a particular group with the technology component, but not the content component of the project.

 

 

Explanation Co-teaching Plan

 

Both teachers will actively assist students who are having difficulty by circulating to monitor progress and answer questions.

 

 

Check for Understanding (2)

 

1)     Students will be given an informational handout to fill out information required for their project.  This guides the students and allows the teacher to monitor student progress.  Students are not limited to the informational handout, but all content must be addressed before additional information should be covered.

 

2)     Students may post questions on the “Parking Lot” poster.  This way the teacher can address common questions with the entire class or a group of students, instead of answering the same questions for each group.

 

3)     Students will turn in their final projects on a flashdrive or student drive (school access), along with their informational sheet and project outline (storyboard).  Projects will be presented to give students the opportunity to see other explanations of the same objectives, as well as explanations about the topic they did not choose.  This will serve as a final review before the unit test.

 

4)     Students will take the Evolution Unit Test.

 

 

Check for Understanding Co-teaching Plan (2)

 

Both teachers will actively assist students who are having difficulty by circulating to monitor progress and answer questions.

 

 

Extended Practice

 

1)    Test corrections: students must explain why an original answer was incorrect and explain why the new answer is correct, without simply restating the question.

 

2)    Students may visit http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/evolution/index.html to explore additional topics relating to evolution.  Answers to frequently asked questions can be found at http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/evolution/library/faq/ and it will be recommended that students visit this site.

 

 

Closing

 

1)    After all projects have been presented, a short discussion will be held reviewing the big ideas and answering the essential questions. 

 

2)    Students will also receive their tests back.  Students will make test corrections (for a separate grade), including an explanation of why an original answer was incorrect and why the corrected answer is correct.

 

3)    The next unit covered will be classification and kingdoms.  In response to a journal question, students will be asked to explain how they think evolution relates to classification and the kingdoms.

 

Closing Co-teach Plan

 

Both teachers will actively assist students who are having difficulty by circulating to monitor progress and answer questions.