The Evolution and Selection Learning Activities set for Middle School Science provides the materials you need to design your unit. The activities address the topics included in NGSS learning standards MS-LS4 Biological Evolution: Unity and Diversity (MS-LS4-1 through MS-LS4-6). These topics include, but are not limited to:
- Evidences Supporting Evolution
- Relative V Absolute Dating
- Darwin's Natural Selection Theory
- Genetic Sources of Variation
- Modern Natural Selection Theory
- Modern Examples of Natural Selection
- Cladogram Interpretation
- Artificial Selection (selective breeding), Cloning, Recombinant DNA and Gene Therapy
- Some Ethical Considerations of Biotechnology
The contents of the package include four worksheets, completion notes with an associated PowerPoint, a lab activity, 54 slide (26 questions) Jeopardy review game, as well as a 50 question unit exam. There are 79 total student pages in the package. All materials can be easily modified to suit your specific classroom needs. Most of the materials are well suited for use in most distance learning environments. With the exception of the PowerPoints, all activities are in both word and pdf format. Answer keys are included for all items. Specific information about the materials in this package are in the list that follows:
- Evolution and Selection Scaffolded Completion Notes (20 pp.)
- PowerPoint to accompany the Completion Notes which includes 6 bell ringer activities (63 slides)
- Evidences for Evolution Worksheet (42 mixed type questions) (10 pp.)
- Natural Selection and Evolutionary Relationship Worksheet (32 mixed type questions) (9 pp.)
- Natural Selection Worksheet 2 (3 pp.)
- Modern Natural Selection and Selection Technologies Worksheet (39 mixed type questions) (10 pp.)
- Natural Selection of Beans Lab (7 pp.)
- Evolution Exam (50 mixed questions) (17 pp.)
- NGSS, Common Core and Local Learning Objectives (3 pp.)
- Evolution Jeopardy PowerPoint Review Game (26 questions) (54 slides)
NGSS Learning Standards Addressed/MS-LS4 Biological Evolution: Unity and Diversity
Students who demonstrate understanding can:
MS-LS4-1. Analyze and interpret data for patterns in the fossil record that document the existence, diversity, extinction, and change of life forms throughout the history of life on Earth under the assumption that natural laws operate today as in the past.
MS-LS4-2. Apply scientific ideas to construct an explanation for the anatomical similarities and differences among modern organisms and between modern and fossil organisms to infer evolutionary relationships.
MS-LS4-3. Analyze displays of pictorial data to compare patterns of similarities in the embryological development across multiple species to identify relationships not evident in the fully formed anatomy.
MS-LS4-4. Construct an explanation based on evidence that describes how genetic variations of traits in a population increase some individuals’ probability of surviving and reproducing in a specific environment.
MS-LS4-5. Gather and synthesize information about the technologies that have changed the way humans influence the inheritance of desired traits in organisms.
MS-LS4-6. Use mathematical representations to support explanations of how natural selection may lead to increases and decreases of specific traits in populations over time.
Common Core State Standards Connections:
RST.6-8.1 Cite specific textual evidence to support analysis of science and technical texts, attending to the precise details of explanations or descriptions
RST.6-8.7 Integrate quantitative or technical information expressed in words in a text with a version of that information expressed visually (e.g., in a flowchart, diagram, model, graph, or table
RST.6-8.9 Compare and contrast the information gained from experiments, simulations, video, or multimedia sources with that gained from reading a text on the same topic.
WHST.6-8.2 Write informative/explanatory texts to examine a topic and convey ideas, concepts, and information through the selection, organization, and analysis of relevant content.
WHST.6-8.8 Gather relevant information from multiple print and digital sources; assess the credibility of each source; and quote or paraphrase the data and conclusions of others while avoiding plagiarism and providing basic bibliographic information for sources.
WHST.6-8.9 Draw evidence from informational texts to support analysis, reflection, and research.
MP.4 Model with mathematics.
6.SP.B.5 Summarize numerical data sets in relation to their context.
Upon the completion of this unit the student will be able to:
1. define the term evolution.
2. recognize that evolution provides an explanation for the structure, function and behavior in life forms.
3. define and list some examples of fossils.
4. discuss the purpose and differences between relative and absolute dating.
5. explain why fossils are rarely found in metamorphic or igneous rock.
6. explain how the law of superposition is used to date fossils.
7. recognize that simple, single-celled organisms lived over three billion years ago and the first multi-cellular organisms evolved about one million years ago.
8. recognize the fossil record has shown a trend toward increasing complexity in life forms as they become younger.
9. explain how continental drift, biochemical evidence, embryo similarities, comparative cytology and comparative anatomy support the theory of evolution and the concept of common ancestry.
10. explain and interpret a simple cladogram.
11. define the term extinction.
12. recognize extinction occurs when the adaptive characteristics of a species are insufficient to allow its survival.
13. explain the theory of natural selection.
14. explain why variations are important for a species to survive environmental changes.
15. list some genetic sources of variation.
16. recognize some chemicals and radiation can increase the chance of mutations.
17. recognize that only mutations in gametes can be passed on to the offspring.
18. recognize sexual reproduction leads to more variation in the offspring than asexual reproduction.
19. discuss why different Galapagos finches exhibit beak variations.
20. list some weaknesses in Darwin's original explanation of natural selection.
21. recognize that modern natural selection theory explains the genetic source of variation and distinguishes between environmentally caused and genetic variations.
22. recognize species variations that are well suited to their environment tend to increase in frequency, while those variations not suited for their environment tend to decrease in frequency.
23. explain how environmental change influenced the evolution of the peppered moth.
24. discuss how antibiotic use results in the natural selection of antibiotic resistant bacteria.
25. discuss how insecticide use results in the natural selection of insecticide resistant insect pests.
26. define the term selecting agent.
27. recognize evolutionary factors act on whole populations but not on individual members of the population.
28. discuss the process of artificial selection (selective breeding).
29. list some examples of artificial selection.
30. identify one major possible weakness in the process of artificial selection.
31. recognize that cloning produces genetically identical offspring.
32. state two uses of cloning technology.
33. briefly describe the process of recombinant DNA technology (genetic engineering).
34. list two human hormones produced through the use of recombinant DNA technology.
35. briefly explain what is meant by gene therapy.
36. discuss one specific use of gene therapy technology.
37. discuss some ethical considerations associated with the use of some genetic technologies.
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