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Adapting to Life by the Wild Myakka River

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Keywords: Prezi, adaptation
Subject(s): English/Language Arts, Photography, Biology, Information Skills, Earth Science, Special Needs, Life Science, Geography, Technology, Social Skills, Video, Health and PE, Science, Speech and Language
Grades 6 through 9
NETS-S Standard:
  • Creativity and Innovation
  • Communication and Collaboration
  • Research and Information Fluency
  • Critical Thinking, Problem Solving, and Decision Making
  • Digital Citizenship
  • Technology Operations and Concepts
View Full Text of Standards
School: Sarasota School-Arts & Science, Sarasota, FL
Planned By: Julia Calderon
Original Author: Julia Calderon, Sarasota
Students will use prior knowledge of adaptations to create a digital interactive poster (Prezi) that demonstrates the different types of adaptations that exist in our local environment. Students will travel to a Myakka River State Park to gather video and images that they will use to create their digital interactive poster. Each group will be assigned a specific Florida Biome to represent in their digital interactive poster. Teams will consist of 3 – 4 students. Each team will be given a digital point and shoot camera and a flip camera to use during the field trip. After the field trip students will use the digital lab and transfer the photos and videos they took to the computers. Students will then go to www.Prezi.com to create their digital interactive poster from the images and videos they took during the field trip. After completion of the digital interactive posters, students will display their work on the class’s website. Students will also present their digital interactive posters to the class. Students will be provided with a rubric that clearly outlines the expectations and requirements of the project. Students will be evaluated based on their overall group presentation and their individual contributions. Individuals will be evaluated for their individual contributions to the group and their ability to collaborate and be a productive team member. Teams are encouraged to utilize their individual member’s gifts and talents.

The student will:
-Recognize the different types of adaptations that exist in living things
-Explain the benefits of specific adaptations in the specific environment
-Classify the purpose of the adaptation (predator-prey, finding food, camouflage, reproduction, mating, etc…)
-Make visual observations
-Record quantitative and qualitative observations in their science notebook
-Use a digital camera to photograph adaptations
-Use a digital video camera to record adaptive behaviors
-Record on a map the location of the observation
-Use technology to create a visually pleasing presentation of the material they have learned
-Work collaboratively to create a finished product

Next Generation Florida Sunshine State Standards:
SC.7.L.15.2: Explore the scientific theory of evolution by recognizing and explaining ways in which genetic variation and environmental factors contribute to evolution by natural selection and diversity of organisms.
SC.7.L.17.2: Compare and contrast the relationships among organisms such as mutualism, predation, parasitism, competition, and commensalism.
SC.7.N.1.5: Describe the methods used in the pursuit of a scientific explanation as seen in different fields of science such as biology, geology, and physics.
SC.7.N.1.6: Explain that empirical evidence is the cumulative body of observations of a natural phenomenon on which scientific explanations are based.
SC.8.N.1.6: Understand that scientific investigations involve the collection of relevant empirical evidence, the use of logical reasoning, and the application of imagination in devising hypotheses, predictions, explanations and models to make sense of the collected evidence.
LA. The student will organize and effectively deliver speeches to entertain, inform and persuade, demonstrating appropriate language choices, body language, eye contact, gestures, and the use of supporting graphics and technology.
LA. The student will explain how text features (e.g., charts, maps, diagrams, sub-headings, captions, illustrations, graphs) aid the reader's understanding;
LA. The student will select a topic, develop a prioritized search plan, and apply evaluative criteria (e.g., relevance, objectivity, scope of content in print and online sources) to select appropriate resources for research;
LA. The student will analyze ways that production elements (e.g.,, graphics, color, motion, sound, digital technology) affect communication across the media;
LA. The student will select and use appropriate available technologies (e.g., computer, digital camera) to enhance communication and achieve a purpose (e.g., video, presentations);
LA. The student will evaluate and apply digital tools (e.g., word processing, multimedia authoring, web tools, graphic organizers) to publications and presentations.
PE.7.L.1.4: Participate in a variety of team sports, outdoor pursuits, and aquatics activities that promote effective stress management.

Science notebook (1/student)
5” x 8” index cards (1/team)
Trail map of Myakka River State Park (1/team)
Video Camera (Flip) (1/team)
Point and Shoot Camera (1/team)
SD card for cameras (1/camera)
Netbooks/laptops (1/student)
Wacom tablet (1/student or team)
Optional Materials:
Handheld GPS
Florida Wildlife ID guides

Anticipatory Set:
Students will study in depth the ways that organisms adapt to their environment prior to traveling to Myakka River State Park. In their science notebook students will record the various types of adaptations they have learned about and will create an illustration of each type of adaptation.

Preparation Required:
-Divide students into teams, each team should consist of 3 to 5 students with diverse backgrounds and abilities
-Create location cards (1/team) using index cards
---Name of location (River, Canopy, Bird walk, Dry Prairie)
---Description of the location
---Typical animals found
---Printed map of the trail

1-Before leaving school:
1.1-Assign teams: Assign each team a specific location they will be responsible for observing adaptations at.
1.2-Each team will pick a location card:
1.2.1-Provide needed background information about the location they will be observing
1.2.2-Map of the trail
1.3-Review safety rules:
1.3.1-Stay with your team and your chaperones
1.3.2-Stay on the designated trails
1.3.3-Take only photos, leave only footprints
1.3.4-Unless instructed, do not touch the organisms
1.3.5-Florida is home to many wild animals including alligators and venomous snakes, students need to stay away from bodies of water and be mindful of where they are walking
1.4-Provide materials to the group (video camera & digital point and shoot camera)
2-Bus ride:
2.1-Teams will review their Location Card before arrive at Myakka River State Park.
3-At Park:
3.1-Each class will spend about 1 hour at each specific location
3.1.1-Location 1: River walk
3.1.2-Location 2: Canopy walk
3.1.3-Location 3: Bird walk
3.1.4-Location 4: Dry Prairie
4-Class will travel by bus to the 4 different locations within Myakka River State Park.
5-While on the trails:
5.1-All students will
5.1.1-Record observations in their science notebooks about the different types of adaptations that they see at each location.
5.2-Team assigned the location will also
5.2.1-Use the point and shoot camera and the video camera to record the adaptations that they see
5.2.2-Use the trail map to mark the location the images were taken at.
Record the image number on the map

1-Teams connect the digital cameras to the netbooks/laptops to transfer the images and videos to a shared network folder on the computer.
2-Students will use the browser to go to www.Prezi.com to create their digital interactive posters (Prezi)
3-Team mates will collaborate together from their individual computers on their team Prezi.
4-Teams decide which 5 adaptations they would like to focus on from their specific location at Myakka River State Park.
5-Students upload the images and videos of the adaptations into their Prezi
6-Students refer to their science notebooks to add descriptive information (qualitative and quantitative) about the specific adaptations that they choose.
7-Students will use the “zoom in” feature to add additional information about the specific adaptation.
8-Students will use the internet to research additional information about the specific organisms and their adaptations.
9-Students will use the Wacom Tablets to and illustrations and connecting lines to their Prezi.

Teams present their digital interactive posters to the class using the network attached projector and the mobile lab.

Cross-Curriculum Ideas
Geography Extension:
Students use the handheld GPS to record the coordinates of each image
Students use Google Map’s to add the photos and videos to the specific locations on the map or to create a map with “push pins” at each image location. Students then add a hyperlink to the map that can be clicked on by the viewer of the digital interactive poster.
Students use Google Earth to create a virtual field trip hyperlink into their digital interactive poster.
Teams review other teams' digital interactive posters that had the same assigned location to see that location though the other team's eyes.
Students will compare and contrast the types of adaptations found in relationship to the location of the organism. Example: Do organisms by the river have similar or different adaptations to those organisms found in the dry prairie?
Links: Link to Myakka River State Park
Link to Prezi
Materials: Flash/USB Drives, Camera Bags, Camera/Video Accessories, Wacom Tablets, Networked Projectors, Point and Shoot, Wildlife, Digital Cameras, Flip Video, Video Cameras, Mobile Labs, Tripods, Batteries, Memory Cards, Integrating Technology