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Evolution Notes
Mrs. Painter
Cube investigation
• Form a group of three or four with nearby
• Without touching, opening, moving the
cube, come up with questions about the
• Let’s focus on one question_______
What is on the bottom of the cube?
What number is it, why do you think so?
Is it shaded or not shaded?
Why do you think this?
What does this have to do with science?
What in the world does this have to do
with evolution?
You need a piece of paper:
I will be showing you three different scenes.
For each scene Write the letter (A, B or C) then the
Please do not share your observations or
Glossary of Terms About the Nature
of Science
• Fact: In science, an observation that has been
repeatedly confirmed.
• Law: A descriptive generalization about how
some aspect of the natural world behaves under
stated circumstances.
• Hypothesis: A testable statement about the
natural world that can be used to build more
complex inferences and explanations.
• Theory: In science, a well-substantiated
explanation of some aspect of the natural world
that can incorporate facts, laws, inferences, and
tested hypotheses.
Are you listening?
• Stand up
• Turn to your elbow partner
• Person A-describe the difference between
a hypothesis and a theory
• Person B-listen to person A and repeat
back to them what they described
• Look at the terms and evaluate what you
Change Across Time
The world around us changes
Some changes are small and appear quickly like the change of
pond after a rainstorm
Others can be large and take a very long time:
The Hubble Space Telescope has revealed many astronomical
phenomena that ground-based telescopes cannot see. The images
show disks of matter around young stars that could give rise to
Biological Change
More than 99 percent of the species that
have ever lived on the earth are now
extinct, either because all of the members
of the species died, the species evolved
into a new species, or it split into two or
more new species.
What is evolution?
• Evolution in the broadest sense explains that what we
see today is different from what existed in the past.
Galaxies, stars, the solar system, and earth have
changed through time, and so has life on earth.
• Biological evolution concerns changes in living things
during the history of life on earth. It explains that living
things share common ancestors. Over time, evolutionary
change gives rise to new species. Darwin called this
process "descent with modification," and it remains a
good definition of biological evolution today.
Do you understand?
• Stand up, turn to your elbow partner
• Person B--Explain Evolution in the context
of a scientific explanation
• Person A-Listen to person B – add or
explain anything you think person B
should have included
Is evolution a fact or a theory?
• The theory of evolution explains how life on earth has changed. In
scientific terms, "theory" does not mean "guess" or "hunch" as it
does in everyday usage. Scientific theories are explanations of
natural phenomena built up logically from testable observations and
hypotheses. Biological evolution is the best scientific explanation we
have for the enormous range of observations about the living world.
Why isn't evolution called a law?
• Laws are generalizations that describe phenomena, whereas
theories explain phenomena. For example, the laws of
thermodynamics describe what will happen under certain
circumstances; thermodynamics theories explain why these events
• Laws, like facts and theories, can change with better data. But
theories do not develop into laws with the accumulation of evidence.
Rather, theories are the goal of science.
Glossary of Terms Used when
talking About Evolution
• Evolution: Change in the hereditary characteristics of groups of
organisms over the course of generations. (Darwin referred to this
process as "descent with modification.")
• Species: In general, a group of organisms that can potentially breed
with each other to produce fertile offspring and cannot breed with
the members of other such groups.
• Variation: Genetically determined differences in the characteristics
of members of the same species.
• Natural selection: Greater reproductive success among particular
members of a species arising from genetically determined
characteristics that confer an advantage in a particular environment.
History of Evolution studies