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NGSS Connections: All
The NGSS Connections below are the specific dimensions of NGSS that are addressed in the units that are available to you. Click on an item below to see all lessons that address that dimension.

Analyze and Interpret Data
Analyze and Interpreting Data
Analyzing and Interpreting Data
Asking Questions
Asking Questions and Defining Problems
Cause and Effect
Connections to Engineering Technology and Applications of Science
Constructing Explanations
Constructing Explanations and Designing Solutions
Developing and Using Models
Energy and Matter
Engaging in Argument from Evidence
Engineering and Technology on Society and the Natural World
ESS2.B: Plate Tectonics and Large-Scale System Interactions
ESS2.C: The Roles of Water in Earth’s Surface Processes
ESS3.A: Natural Resources
ESS3.B: Natural Hazards
ESS3.C: Human Impact on Earth’s Systems
ESS3.C: Human Impacts on Earth Systems
ESS3.D: Global Climate Change
ETS1.A: Defining and Delimiting Engineering Problems
ETS1.B: Developing Possible Solutions
Influence of Science
Influence of Science Engineering and Technology on Society and the Natural World
Interdependence of Science Engineering and Technology
LS2.A: Interdependent Relationships in Ecosystems
LS2.C: Ecosystem Dynamics Functioning and Resilience
Obtaining Evaluating and Communicating Information
Patterns
PS1.A: Structure and Properties of Matter
PS1.B: Chemical Reactions
PS2.B: Types of Interactions
PS3.A: Definitions of Energy
PS3.B: Conservation of Energy and Energy Transfer
PS3.C: Energy and Forces
PS3.C: Relationships Between Energy and Forces
Scale Proportion and Quantity
Stability and Change
Structure and Function
STS Connections: Influence of Science Engineering and Technology on Society and the Natural World
STS: Influence of Science Engineering and Technology on Society and the Natural World
Systems and System Models

Lesson 7: Invasive Species
NGSS Connections: Analyzing and Interpreting Data, Constructing Explanations and Designing Solutions, LS2.C: Ecosystem Dynamics Functioning and Resilience, Stability and Change

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Teaching Time: 3 Class Periods (assuming 50 minute periods)

Instructional Setting
  • Classroom with a computer and projector

Lesson Question:
  • What might be the effects of adding a new species to an ecosystem?


Gotta Have Checklist
  • How changes to the biotic parts of the ecosystem affect things like the resources available, competition, predation and/or mutualism.
  • How individuals are affected by a change to the biotic parts of the ecosystem.
  • How populations are affected by a change to the biotic parts of the ecosystem.
ust.pngUnit Summary Table (teacher version)

 

Lesson Key Concepts
(DCI & DCC)
  • Ecosystems can undergo big changes.
  • A change to a biotic part of the ecosystem could affect the entire ecosystem.
  • Small changes in one part of a system might cause large changes in another part.
  • Patterns can be used to identify cause and effect relationships.

Lesson Key Practices
  • Articulate a statement that connects phenomena to scientific ideas.

Learning Performances
  1. Students will analyze and interpret data that demonstrates how small changes in one part of an ecosystem can cause large changes in another part of the ecosystem.
  2. Students will construct explanations supported by evidence for how populations within ecosystems respond to biotic disruptions.
  3. Students will obtain and communicate information on the effects of different types of invasive species in Michigan’s ecosystems.

Lesson Introduction:
In the previous lesson, students considered the relationship between the physical components of an environment and its populations of organisms. They learned that a change in a physical component, such as an increase in snowfall, can help to determine the number of organisms in a population, such as the white-tailed deer of Michigan.

In this lesson, students explore the relationship between the biological components of the environment and populations. They see that a disruption, or change, in a

More

Science Words
Past Lessons This Lesson Future Lessons
Biological
Competition
Disturbances
Ecosystem
Interdependence
Mutualism
Physical
Populations
Population Growth
Predation
Predator
Prey
Resources
Invasive species
Native species
Nonnative species
Science Words
Past Lessons
Biological
Competition
Disturbances
Ecosystem
Interdependence
Mutualism
Physical
Populations
Population Growth
Predation
Predator
Prey
Resources
This Lesson
Invasive species
Native species
Nonnative species
Future Lessons

Advance Preparation
  • Prepare copies of student resources as needed (see phase summaries).


Safety Considerations
  • None

Instructional Phases

1. Anchoring Experience

Students examine how a change to one biotic component of an ecosystem can have an effect on many other parts. Students view a video that illustrates how the reintroduction of wolves in a national park can cause a change in its rivers.

Resources Needed for this Instructional Phase:

Detailed Student Steps:

  1. Individually, students respond to the following question: Can a wolf change a river?
     
  2. Students share their ideas with a partner. Pairs share their ideas with the class.
     
  3. Students watch L07 Anchor Video 1.

    Teacher Note: This is not an example of invasive species. Wolves are a native species within Yellowstone Park, but by the 1930’s humans had killed all the wolves. The killing of all the wolves is often considered a human caused disturbance. Reintroducing the wolves was also a human caused biological disturbance, it was a change to the biotic ecosystem that happened as a discrete event.
     
  4. Students share their observations with a group and then groups share their common observations with the class.
     
  5. Individually, students record their answers to the lesson question:
    • What might be the effects of adding a new species to an ecosystem?

2. Uncover Your Ideas

Students create graphs in order to analyze plant species data for a wetland ecosystem. The data shows the effect of purple loosestrife on the number of other plant species found in a wetland area. Students identify the overall pattern in the data by drawing a line through their graphed data points.

Resources Needed for this Instructional Phase:

Detailed Student Steps:

  1. Students observe the two images of the ecosystem shown on slide 1 of 6.6_L07_Slides_InvasivePlants. They are provided the following scenario:
     
The plants with the purple flowers shown in the second image are called purple loosestrife. Some people are concerned that the purple loosestrife is taking over the ecosystem and harming plants that normally grow there, causing them to disappear. A local politician argues that the purple loosestrife is not a problem and is not affecting other plant species. Rather, the purple loosestrife is taller and bigger than other plant species. All the other plants are still there, just harder to see.
 
  1. Students work in groups and develop a list of evidence that would explain how the purple loosestrife is problematic to the ecosystem. Groups share their ideas with the class.
     
  2. Pairs of students are provided a piece of graph paper and the student resource 6.6_L07_Uncover_Student_Data. Students create a graph of the data provided on the resource.
     
Teacher Note: If students are not familiar with a scatterplot, they may need some assistance determining which variables should be represented on each axis. For the data provided, students should label the x-axis as the percent of study area with purple loosestrife and the y-axis as the total number of plant species present. The data table provided on the student resource comes from a study of the impacts of purple loosestrife carried out in 2006. Following is the table as well as a graph of the data that was developed from the study.
 
Percent of Study Area with Purple LoosestrifeNumber of Plant Species Present
1742
1832
2220
4520
658
855
926
Data estimated from Figure 5(a) in Schooler et al. 2006.
 
Teacher Note: As instructed on the student guide, after students complete their graphs they draw a single, straight line through the middle of the data points. This line should estimate the overall pattern and may differ slightly among students. Following is an example graph showing an example line.

In the graph from the study, the authors did not use a straight line. Instead, they used a different type of line, called a negative exponential fit. A straight line works best for the purposes of this activity.


                                                  
Figure derived from data estimated from Schooler et al. 2006.
 
  1. In small groups, students reason by analyzing their graphs and discussing the overall pattern between percent cover of purple loosestrife and the number of other plant species that can be found in the wetland ecosystem and discuss questions in the table below. Students are asked to work collaboratively in their group to write initial explanations to the questions.
 
Teacher Note: The student groups can put their initial explanations on whiteboards or large pieces of paper for sharing.
 
Example Guiding QuestionsExample Student Answers
What evidence did you gather about the relationship between the percent cover of purple loosestrife and the number of other plant species present in the wetland ecosystem? Make sure to support your explanation with the data you gathered and graphs you made.Based on the graphs that we made as the percent of a study area covered by purple loosestrife increase the total number of plant species decreased.
Provide a statement in which you support or refute the politician’s claim “that purple loosestrife is not a problem because it does not actually reduce the number of species present.“ Support your statement with your analysis of the data.The purple loosestrife is in fact a problem because the data we gathered shows that as the percent of the study area covered by purple loosestrife increased the total number of species found in the study area decreased.
Why do you think the number of other plant species responds the way it does to the presence of purple loosestrife? What type of interaction could be happening between the purple loosestrife and the other plant species?Purple loosestrife is a strong competitor and uses up resources before the other plants can use them.
 
  1. Students refer to row A. “What activity did we do?” and row B. “What evidence did we gather?” on the 6.6_UnitSummaryTable_Student Version. Note that students will enter information into the one-page Unit Summary Table after the Uncover, Share and Connect phases of lessons 2-8.
 
Teacher Note: To save time, these two rows can be partially or completely filled in by the teacher prior to teaching the unit, or can be filled in by the students. Example entries can be found in the 6.6_UnitSummaryTable_TeacherVersion (note these entries are not necessarily in student language).

3. Share Your Ideas

Students interpret the graphs and trend lines they developed in the previous phase. They explain that as the area covered by purple loosestrife in the ecosystem increases, the number of native species decreases. Students are introduced to the science words: native species, nonnative species, and invasive species.

Resources Needed for this Instructional Phase:

Detailed Student Steps:

  1. The student groups share their initial explanations to the questions in the previous phase by posting their whiteboards or verbally sharing their explanations. As student groups are sharing their explanations, focus the students to look for similarities and differences by using these questions.
    • What similarities do you see in the explanations?
    • What difference do you see in the explanations?
 
  1. In a consensus discussion, students craft a whole group explanation to the questions above based on the similarities that the students noticed. Also have them note the points that they do not agree on. As students bring up the concepts of native species, nonnative species, and invasive species, lead them to define these science words using questions similar to the following:
 
Example Guiding QuestionsExample Student Answers
What would you call a species that has naturally evolved in an area?Native species
What would you call a species that migrates into, or is deliberately or accidentally introduced into an ecosystem?Nonnative species
What would you call a non-native species that causes ecological or economic harm?Invasive species
 
Teacher Note: It is important to highlight to students the difference between a reduction in population size and the disappearance of native species from an ecosystem. At large scales (continents), native species are unlikely to disappear, as they are not frequently driven to extinction across their entire range by invasive species (though examples of extinctions do exist.) However, at smaller scales, native populations may disappear from some areas, or populations are reduced such that the number of species remains the same, but many of the native species persist as greatly reduced populations.
 
More information on purple loosestrife in Michigan can be found on the following website: L07 Share Resource 1
 
  1. If necessary, students use the definitions and additional information on slides 2-7 of the resource 6.6_L07_Slides_InvasivePlants to revise their explanations. Slides 2-5 provides students with following Science Word definitions:
Native species: species that have naturally evolved in an area.
Nonnative species: other species that migrate into, or are deliberately or accidentally introduced into an ecosystem.
Invasive species: species that cause ecological or economic harm.
 
  1. The class discusses why purple loosestrife is an invasive species:
 
Example Guiding QuestionExample Student Answer
Why might purple loosestrife tend to become the most common species in areas where it has been introduced? Make sure to use the science words of native, non-native and invasive species in our answer.Purple loosestrife is an effective competitor for resources compared to other plant species. In addition, there are no native species that feed on purple loosestrife.
 
  1. Students are given the lesson’s Gotta Have Checklist (GHC), and/or the teacher facilitates the students to work on their GHC.
 
  1. Students use the GHC to make sure the class explanation from Step 3 includes the key concepts and relationships found in the GHC. Students revise the explanation as needed and record the revised explanation in row C. “My answer to the lesson question(s):” on the 6.6_UnitSummaryTable_Student Version. The Unit Summary Table supports students to construct an explanation for the lesson question(s) by organizing the question(s), details of the investigation conducted, and the evidence gathered, all on one sheet.
 
Teacher Note: Example entries can be found in the 6.6_UnitSummaryTable_TeacherVersion (note these entries are not necessarily in student language). Students should use the science words of native, non-native and invasive species in the answer to the lesson question in the Unit Summary Table.

4. Connect Your Ideas (Connection to the Unit Challenge)

Students work in their Unit Challenge ecosystem teams to gather information on an invasive species that has the potential to impact their ecosystem. Students learn about the invasive species by reading an informational fact sheet that describes how the species lives and the resources it needs. Students use the information to predict how the invasive species could impact organisms that are native to the ecosystem.

Resources Needed for this Instructional Phase:

Detailed Student Steps:

  1. Students meet with their Unit Challenge ecosystem teams. Each team is provided with the appropriate fact sheet that describes an invasive species that can be found in its ecosystem. Fact sheets are provided in the resource: 6.6_UnitChallenge_Student_InvasiveSpeciesFactSheets
     
  2. Students obtain information from their fact sheets. They identify the following:
  • The common and scientific name of the invasive species;
  • Where the species originates;
  • Where it can be found;
  • Why it is (or could be) successful at invading Michigan ecosystems;
  • What effect it may have on native species ( e.g. Hemlock wooly adelgid kills Hemlock trees.)
Teacher Note: Each fact sheet contains optional questions at the bottom. These questions are designed to let students learn some “fun facts” about each invasive.
 
  1. Each student in a team uses information from their fact sheet to predict the immediate and long term impacts of the invasive species on their assigned organism as well as the whole ecosystem. Students record their predictions.

    Teacher Note: At this time, some students may think that their organism is unaffected by the invasive species. As students discuss the invasive species with their ecosystem teams they begin to identify potential impacts. Students who think there is no impact should record why they think their organism would be unaffected.
     
  2. As a team, students compare individual predictions as to how the introduction of an invasive species might affect their organisms.
     
  3. Teams use the chart 6.6_UnitChallenge_Student_InvasiveSpeciesPredictionChart to record their ideas.
     
  4. Teams share with the class their predictions for the effects of the invasive on their ecosystem.
     
  5. Students complete row D “Connecting my ideas to the Unit Challenge”, on the 6.6_UnitSummaryTable_Student Version. Students modify their scientific explanations to address the lesson question(s) in the context of the Unit Challenge, based on the Connecting Your Ideas investigation and using the lesson “Gotta Have Checklist” and key concepts as a reference.

    Teacher Note: Example entries can be found in the 6.6_UnitSummaryTable_TeacherVersion (note these entries are not necessarily in student language).

5. Check Your Progress

Students are provided with data of how an invasive species is affecting a hypothetical ecosystem. They analyze the data and determine if the invasive species has had an effect on native species. They use patterns in the provided data to support or refute a scientist’s claim using evidence. Finally, students will revisit the lesson question and reflect on how their understanding of the lesson question has changed.

Resources Needed for this Instructional Phase:

Detailed Student Steps:

  1. Students individually analyze data to determine the impact of the Snark, a hypothetical invasive species. Each student is provided a copy of 6.6_L07_Check_Student_EA_StudentCopy. This resource sheet contains a graph that shows the relationship between the Snark population and the number of native species in the area.
 
Teacher Note: Read the directions and scenario to students. The intent of the EA is to assess students’ ability to interpret graphs rather than assessing reading comprehension.
 
  1. Students use the graph to answer the questions provided on the resource sheet. Answers to questions can be found on the following teacher resource: 6.6_L07_Check_Teacher_EA_Student Exemplar
     
  2. Instructions for assessing the performance on the student resource sheet, through the use of a rubric, can be found at: 6.6_L07_Check_Teacher_EA_Instructions&Rubric 
 
  1. Individually, students record and/or refine their answers to the lesson questions a second time using the “Gotta Have Checklist” and an evidence-based explanation:
    • What might be the effects of adding a new species to an ecosystem?
 
  1. Students refer back to the initial answers that they recorded in the Anchoring Experience phase and respond to a prompt similar to the following:
  • Explain how the activities in this lesson confirmed, challenged, or otherwise changed your original ideas about the lesson question.

Sources:
  1. Schooler, S. S., P. E. McEvoy, and E. M. Coombs. 2006. Negative per capita effects of purple loosestrife and reed canary grass on plant diversity of wetland communities. Diversity and Distributions 12:351-363
 
  1. Pimentel, D., Zuniga, R., & Morrison, D. (2005). Update on the environmental and economic costs associated with alien-invasive species in the United States. Ecological economics, 52(3), 273-288.



1 CommentViewAdd Comment

This is awesome!
Jul 6, 2017 02:49pm by Jeremy Anderson
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