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Ohio’s New Learning Standards: Environmental Science Month Aug-May Nature of Science Ohio’s New Learning Standards Essential Understanding Observable properties of matter can be explained using the scientific method. - Identify questions and concepts that guide scientific investigations - Design and conduct investigations - Use technology and mathematics to improve investigations - Use models and analyze explanations - Communicate and support a scientific argument - The study of relevant, local problems can be a way to connect the classroom to the real world. - Apply environmental science topics to a global or international scale. Case studies, developing and using models, collecting and analyzing water and/or air quality data, conducting or researching population studies and methods of connecting to the real world must be emphasized for this topic. Technology can be used for comparative studies to share local data internationally. Researching and investigating environmental factors on a global level contributes to the depth of understanding by applying the environmental science concepts to problem solving and design. Examples of global topics that can be explored include building water or air filtration models, investigating climate change data, monitoring endangered or invasive species, and studying the environmental effects of increasing human population. Performance Assessment Students will conduct experiments, using lab safety techniques, use formulas, and graphs to visualize experiments. Students will connect local problems to the real world via case studies and current events. September The Dynamic Earth October Ecosystems November – January Biomes, Populations and Biodiversity January – February Water & Air Environmental science incorporates the hydrosphere, atmosphere, biosphere and lithosphere. The areas are interconnected and depend on one another. - The focus is on the connections and interactions between Earth’s spheres (the hydrosphere, atmosphere, biosphere and lithosphere). Both natural and human-made interactions must be studied. Students will explain verbally and visually the connected nature of the Earth and its systems. - The connections and interactions of energy and matter between Earth’s spheres must be researched and investigated using actual data. The emphasis is on the interconnectedness of Earth’s spheres and the understanding of the complex relationships between each, including both abiotic and biotic factors. Students will show in graphs and visually how ecosystems change over time and how abiotic factors affect life. Ecosystems connect biotic and abiotic factors; life is diverse and dependent on abiotic factors. Biomes include similar species that live together in an ecosystem. Populations of organisms live together and interact with other organisms in the ecosystem. Biodiversity is at risk due to multiple factors. The resources of water and air contribute to most resources on the planet. Water and air can be polluted with dire consequences to the ecosystems they support. The connections and interactions of energy and matter between Earth’s spheres must be researched and investigated using actual data. The emphasis is on the interconnectedness of Earth’s spheres and the understanding of the complex relationships between each, including both abiotic and biotic factors. Understanding that some events are short-term and others have long-term impacts. Students will demonstrate their understanding of various biomes by modeling. Populations of species will be analyzed and compared and contrasted based on similar attributes. - Students will analyze water samples and determine the quality of water. - - February – March Atmosphere & Climate Change Climate is caused by many factors. Global climate trends can impact ecosystems. Global warming effects all aspects of the planet. Ground water and surface water velocities and patterns are included as the movement of water (either at the surface, in the atmosphere or beneath the surface) can be a mode of transmission of contamination. This builds upon previous hydrologic cycle studies in earlier grades. Geomorphology and topography are helpful in determining flow patterns and pathways for contamination. Water, air, land, and biotic field and lab sampling/testing equipment and methods must be utilized with real-world application An understanding of causes and effects of climate, global climate (including el Niño/la Niña patterns and trends) and changes in climate through Earth’s history, geologic events (e.g., a volcanic eruption or mass wasting) that impact Earth’s spheres, biogeochemical cycles and patterns, the effect of abiotic and biotic factors within an ecosystem, and the understanding that each of Earth’s spheres is part of the dynamic Earth system. Students will identify sources of air and water pollution as well as solutions to highly contaminated water and air problems. Students will explain weather trends and how they impact the Earth. Students will connect global weather patterns using maps and models Students will demonstrate an understanding of global warming and its impact on the planet. March Land, Food, & Agriculture April Earth’s Resources & Energy The way we use land can drastically change the local ecosystems. - Urban sprawl, and agriculture require planning to ensure the land is sustainable for future use of land. - The planet offers many resources that must be preserved for future generations. To understand the effects that certain contaminants may have on the environment, scientific investigations and research must be conducted on a local, national and global level. Water, air, land, and biotic field and lab sampling/testing equipment and methods must be utilized with real-world application. Quantifiable field and/or lab data must be used to analyze and draw conclusions regarding air, water or land quality. This topic explores the availability of Earth’s resources, extraction of the resources, contamination problems, remediation techniques and the storage/disposal of the resources or by-products. Conservation, protection and sustainability of Earth’s resources also are included. New discoveries in environmental science allow for improvements in land, water, air, and habitat management. May Waste & Economics, Policy, and the Future Humans play a large role in controlling the change in environments and must take on the responsibilities to make those changes. Economic and environmental policies do not always agree. Governments must work together internationally to find solutions. An individual person can make a difference to the environment. - Researching contemporary discoveries, new technology and new discoveries can lead to improvement in environmental management - Investigate and research global human population patterns and changes over time. Students will connect the use of land to pollution sources and develop sustainable practices for local farms and/or cities. Students will identify various minerals and explain sustainable mining practices. Students will identify types of non-renewable and renewable energy and give the pros/cons of each type. Students will explain verbally and graphically the economic and environmental policies of the US and other countries. Students will explain verbally and graphically the connection between rising human population and pollution. Students will suggest solutions to global environmental issues.