TreEAB Week 1, Lesson 4: Native Trees

Lesson:

Activity Description: 

At the end of this mini-unit, students will understand all the ecosystems services and value trees provide to humans every day. Students will know the biological processes of trees and the importance of native trees for providing habitat. Finally, they will acknowledge the significance trees add to our surroundings and be able to share everything they learn with others.

This matters for all students because if they are not given the opportunity to appreciate nature while young, it may be too late. Students must know that there is much more to trees then what meets the eye. Enlightening kids to all trees have to offer while still impressionable, will forever change their outlook. They will then have the power to be environmental stewards of the future.

Objective: 

Students will be able to compare and contrast the role native trees play for wildlife habitat in urban and forested areas.

Educational Standards: 

Life Sciences 

Benchmark B: Describe the characteristics of an organism in terms of a combination of inherited traits and recognize reproduction as a characteristic of living organisms essential to the continuation of the species. 

8th Grade – 3. Explain how variations in structure, behavior or physiology allow some organisms to enhance their reproductive success and survival in a particular environment. 

Benchmark C: Explain how energy entering the ecosystems as sunlight supports the life of organisms through photosynthesis and the transfer of energy through the interactions of organisms and the environment. 

6th Grade – 8. Describe how organisms may interact with one another. 

7th Grade – 2. Investigate how organisms or populations may interact with one another through symbiotic relationships and how some species have become so adapted to each other that neither could survive without the other (e.g., predator-prey, parasitism, mutualism and commensalism). 

3. Explain how the number of organisms an ecosystem can support depends on adequate biotic (living) resources (e.g., plants, animals) and abiotic (non-living) resources (e.g., light, water and soil). 

Materials: 
  • Homework from previous lesson
  • Tree guide 
  • Teacher graphic organizer 
  • Popsicle sticks
  • Hand lenses 
  • Binoculars 
  • Field guides 
  • Ziploc bags (large and small) 
  • Pre-picked ‘urban area’
  • Exit Tickets
  • Items students collected from outside
Time: 
One Class Period
Source: 
The Ohio State University Extension and USDA Forest Service, http://www.fs.fed.us/