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Earth Systems, 1st Quarter

00.0 Start Here - Introduction to this Class (Earth Systems)

Course Description

Life and physical science content are integrated in a curriculum with two primary goals:

  1. students will value and use science as a process of obtaining knowledge based on observable evidence, and
  2. students' curiosity will be sustained as they develop the abilities associated with scientific inquiry.

This course builds upon students' experience with integrated science in grades seven and eight and is the springboard course for success in biology, chemistry, geology, and physics.

The theme for Earth Science is systems and is the organizing concept to understand life on Earth, geological change, and the interaction of atmosphere, hydrosphere, and biosphere. Earth Science provides students with an understanding of how the parts of a system through the study of the Earth's cycles and spheres. Earth's place in the universe as well its internal structure, tectonic plates, atmospheric processes, and hydrosphere are explored to help understand how Earth science interacts with society.

Class Overview

Welcome to the Electronic High School's Earth Systems science course! Welcome to the Electronic High School's Earth Systems science course. Earth Systems is an exciting course that offers you the opportunity to study Earth, physical, space, and life sciences as they relate to each other. Earth has a myriad of complex, interacting, and, might I add, fascinating, systems that directly influence our lives. These interacting, fascinating systems are the focus of this course.

The course is a science course therefore you can expect to take field trips, design and conduct experiments, and do laboratory work in addition to the usual reading, writing, and research assignments, all from the comfort and convenience of your own home. There is NO official text for the class. All necessary information can be found online. All necessary supplies are easily accessible either at home or from your local store. As an Electronic High School Earth Systems student, you will be actively involved in your learning. Expect to experience many new things. Upon completion of the course, you will see the world in new ways. WHAAA-WHOO!

TAKING THE COURSE

  • To view your grades for the course, click on the “Grades” link on the front page of the class.
  • When I correct your assignment, I will assign a grade and will write a comment. To see your grade and read my comments, click on the “Grades” icon, as directed above.
  • You may do the assignments in any order, as long as you save the last assignment for last.

SUBMITTING ASSIGNMENTS

  • The bulk of the course is in Module 3 on the front page of the class.  Read about the assignment, look at the suggested webs, and view any multimedia presentations that may be associated with the assignment.
  • Do the assignment on your computer. Use your programs (Word, WordPerfect, Excel, PowerPoint, Mac programs, etc…) to create your assignments.
  • Save your assignment on your computer’s hard drive or on a disk.
  • Go back to the Earth Systems web site.
  • Go to Module 3 and click the assignment's title.
  • At the end of each assignment is a “Edit my submission” icon. Click on this icon, even if you have no yet written anything. A box will appear. Cut and paste your assignment into that box if your assignment has only text.
  • OR, if your assignment has more than just writing (graphs, Powerpoint, illustrations, etc…) then you can upload a file. To do this, click “Edit my submission” and “Save changes” to submit what you have written in the box. Then click “Browse”. This will let you find your file on your computer. When you have found the file you want to submit, click “Upload this file”.
  • You may save the document to work on later or submit it.
  • When you are confident your assignment is ready to send to me, click “Save changes”.
  • Occasionally you may need to mail me assignments. To send assignments by mail, email me and ask for my address.
  • Always keep a copy of your assignments. Sometimes assignments are lost in cyber-space. For your protection, always save a copy of your assignments on your hard drive or on a disk.
  • If you have questions, you may e-mail me.

GRADES

  • I correct e-mailed assignments within 48 hours of receiving them---unless you submit an assignment on the weekend. I do not work Saturday and never on Sunday. When I correct your assignment I will reply to it with a score and comments if needed. Mailed assignments take longer, up to two or three weeks. I also return mailed assignments with a comment and score.
  • I will NOT accept incomplete assignments. If you submit an incomplete or unacceptable assignment I will return it to you with instructions on what you need to do to earn credit for the assignment.
  • If you are not satisfied with your score, you may re-submit assignments. You can always correct and re-submit assignments for a better score.
  • I grade on a scale of 1 to 10.
    • Assignments that receive a "10/10, A" score have more than is required. You have written more than was necessary, added a graphic or illustration, or in some way "gone the extra mile".
    • Assignments that earn a "9/10, A" have completely filled all requirements; have answered every question correctly.
    • Assignments that have only a few things wrong earn an "8/10, B".
    • Mediocre assignments earn a "7/10, C".
    • Anything less than mediocre I will send back to you to re-do.
  • You will not earn credit for the quarter until you have done ALL the assignments.
  • When you have completed ALL the assignments you will be eligible to take the final exam for the quarter.
  • I will determine your quarter grade by averaging the scores of all the assignment grades and adding your final exam score.
  • You cannot earn more than one letter grade higher in the class than you earned on the final exam. For example, if you earn a “D” on the final exam, the highest grade you can earn in the class is a “C”.
  • You cannot re-take the final exam.
  • You MUST pass the final exam to earn credit for the course.
  • If you fail the final exam, you will have to re-take a modified version of the course before you can take the final exam again. The modified version of the course is generally more text-based and less activity oriented.

WHEW! That was a LOT of stuff!

Thank you for enrolling in Earth Systems. We are about to embark on an exciting adventure and I am looking forward to our journey together. I hope to read from you soon!

Now that you have finished reading this, please do to the first assignment, "About Me".

When you are ready to turn in assignments, please submit them in the Assignments, Quizzes, Tests section of the course.

 

00.00.01 About Me (Earth Systems)

teacher-scored 10 points possible 20 minutes

The About Me assignment is fun and unique.

As you complete the assignment I am looking for the following things in your introduction.

  1. Name
  2. Current high school and counselor name
  3. Parent e-mail
  4. 3 Interesting facts or hobbies about you
  5. Goal for completing this quarter
  6. An introduction to you through the eyes of your real or imaginary pet

 

Pacing: complete this by the end of Week 1 of your enrollment date for this class.


00.00.02 Charting the Course (Earth Systems)

computer-scored 10 points possible 30 minutes

Have you ever noticed that every teacher has different rules and expectations? It is so easy to get confused and “off course” when trying to navigate different classes in this “river” we call the Electronic High School. This assignment is designed to help you “stay on course” in Earth Systems.

Assignment:

  • Read (or re-read) the START HERE page.
  • Using the information there, answer the questions on the quiz (found under Topic 3 on the main class page). Choose the best answer for each question.

You may take the quiz as many times as you need to, but you MUST score 100%.

Pacing: complete this by the end of Week 1 of your enrollment date for this class.


00.01.01 Student Software Needs

 

Students need access to a robust internet connection and a modern web browser.

This class may also require the Apple QuickTime plug-in to view media.

For students using a school-issued Chromebook, ask your technical support folks to download the QuickTime plug-in and enable the plug-in for your Chromebook.

$0.00

01.00 The Biosphere and Geosphere (Earth Systems)

There are 15 assignments in the first quarter. You must complete ALL fifteen assignments and pass the proctored final test to receive .25 first quarter credit. If you do NOT pass the proctored final exam with 60% or higher, you will NOT earn credit for the class, period.

01.01 Looking at Systems (Earth Systems)

You have heard the word “system” most of your life and have probably even used the word once or twice. Have you ever thought about what the word “system” means? What is a system? Read on in the assignment for the answer to this and other fascinating questions.

01.01 Looking at Systems (Earth Systems)

teacher-scored 10 points possible 30 minutes

Use COMPLETE SENTENCES to answer the questions, as you read through the following paragraphs.

 

In the introduction I posed the question, “What is a system?” What do you think?  Write your answer to the question below.

1. Write down, in your own words, your definition of a system.

A system has two distinguishing characteristics. The first is that it has SYNERGY. Synergy means that the whole is greater than the sum of the parts. This sounds a lot more complicated than it is. What it means, is that when all of the pieces of a system are put together, they are more valuable than all of the pieces would be if they were considered separately. A home is a good example. If you were to lay all the pieces and parts of your home in a pile, you would have a big pile of wood, insulation, pipes, wires, drywall, etc. Your pile of “house stuff” would be worth something, but not nearly as much as your home is worth when all the “house stuff” is organized into a system.

01.01 parts of a house01.01 parts of a house The second distinguishing characteristic of a system, is that it has EMERGENT PROPERTIES. Emergent properties are properties that emerge as a result of how the system works together, or properties that do not exist without the system. In other words, emergent properties are characteristics that are unique to the system as a whole.

Let us consider the example of your home once again. Some emergent properties of your home may be its comfort and its safety. The comfort of your home is a function of the materials used to built it, the architectural design, and the furniture inside. The home’s safety is a property dependent on the design, the strength and location of its doors and windows, and the neighborhood in which it was built. Both the safety and comfort of your home are properties of the home that are a result of the “home system”; they are not dependent on just one aspect of the home.

01.01 house01.01 house 2. Give two examples of systems.

 

3. Identify an emergent property for each of the systems you gave as an example.

 

To better understand systems, it is useful to ask three questions about them. The three question approach to studying systems is:

What are the parts of the system?

What are the properties of the system as a whole?

How is the system part of a larger system?

In our example of a home, we have already identified the parts; wood, dry wall, wires, pipes, etc. We have also already described a few of its properties: safety, comfort, beauty. That leaves only one question remaining. How is the home part of a larger system? The home is part of a neighborhood, which is part of a city, which is part of a state, which is part of a nation, and so on.

4. How are the two systems you gave as examples, part of a larger system?

 

So, how does all this relate to a science course? In the past, scientists have studied the various parts of the Earth. They have looked at botany (how plants work), zoology (animals), geology (rocks), and physics (forces), but few have studied how all of these work together. Now we are discovering that the Earth is much more than a bunch of parts. It is a whole. The Earth is a whole system that works together. This means that there is an interconnection between all of Earth’s living and non-living parts.

Everything works together in important ways. The wind, rain, bacteria, insects, deserts, and forests all work together as parts of the Earth System. Let us now apply the three question approach to studying systems to Earth’s System.

5. What are the parts of Earth’s System?

6. What are the properties of the Earth’s System?

7. How is the Earth’s System part of a larger system?

Scientists divide the Earth’s System into four sub-systems: biosphere (life), lithosphere (rocks and stuff), hydrosphere (water), and atmosphere (air).

01.01 Four systems01.01 Four systems While studying the parts of the Earth System it is important to look for the emergent properties of the Earth System.

How do the parts of the Earth System come together to form a sum that is greater than the sum of its parts?

This question is best answered by focusing on the Earth’s matter, energy, and life. Think back to your seventh grade science days.

What is matter?

Matter is stuff. Anything that has mass and volume (weighs something and takes up space) is matter.

What happens to the matter on Earth?

MATTER CYCLES. Essentially all the matter on Earth has been here since the Earth was formed. It does not go away, and we do not get new matter. Earth recycles. We get rain year after year, century after century, and eon after eon, because Earth recycles water. Living organisms can breathe in oxygen and exhale carbon dioxide forever, because the hydrogen, carbon, and oxygen molecules on Earth are used over and over again in the Earth System.

8. What does the term “matter cycles” mean?

9. Give an example of how matter cycles.

While matter cycles round and round in the Earth System, ENERGY FLOWS through the Earth System. The vast majority of Earth’s energy comes from the sun, flows into the Earth’s System, and flows out of the Earth’s System into space. If all the energy that comes to Earth from the sun were to stay on Earth, the Earth would melt away.

But the energy that comes to Earth from the sun does not stay. Eventually it radiates back out to space as heat. We know this because the average temperature of the Earth has remained relatively constant. If the energy from the sun were to stay on Earth, the Earth’s average temperature would rise. Some of the sun’s energy is reflected by the atmosphere, some is absorbed by the Earth and re-radiated as heat, some evaporates water and powers the water cycle, some is captured by plants and used to make sugars, and some powers the wind.

Eventually ALL of the energy that comes to the Earth from the sun leaves the Earth and flows into space. For this reason we say that energy flows through the Earth System.

10. What does the term “energy flows” mean?

11. Give an example of how energy flows through a part of the Earth System.

A web is a complex structure with multiple interconnecting parts. We say that LIFE WEBS in the Earth System because life has multiple interconnecting parts both with matter cycles and energy flows as well as with other life. Life is connected with matter cycles in many ways. Plants capture carbon from the air and use it to make food. Animals eat plants as food and release carbon (in the form of carbon dioxide) back into the air. Decomposers break down both plants and animals and also release carbon.

Life also participates in the flow of energy through the Earth System. Plants capture the sun’s energy through photosynthesis, and animals that eat the plants release that energy through respiration. The energy flows to the plants, through the animals and out into space. Life is also very connected to other life.

All of Earth’s life depends on other forms of life. Animals depend on plants for food and oxygen. Plants depend on animals for carbon dioxide. Decomposers depend on plants and animals as an energy source, and plants and animals depend on decomposers to break down and release important mineral components. A change in one part of life’s web has far-reaching and often unanticipated consequences on other parts of the life web.

12. What is meant by the term “life webs”?

13. Explain how a change in one aspect of the life web might affect other parts of the web?

(For example, how would killing off the grasshoppers in a meadow affect the other members of the meadow community?) The notions that MATTER CYCLES, ENERGY FLOWS, and LIFE WEBS are the most important concepts you will get from this course.

As you proceed through the course, look for examples of these three emergent properties of Earth’s System. Be sure to use complete sentences to answer all of the questions.

GOOD LUCK AND HAVE FUN!

Pacing: complete this by the end of Week 2 of your enrollment date for this class.


01.02 Take a Walk (Earth Systems)

In our attempt to understand our wide and wonderful world, we classify things. One of the ways we classify the matter around us is by dividing it into two categories: abiotic and biotic.


The physical aspects of the environment, such as land forms, soil type and pH, temperature, amount and kind of precipitation, wind, air supply, and amount of sunlight, are considered abiotic factors. They influence the kind and number of living things found in a particular area. Many of these things act as limiting factors because their quality and quantity determine the survival of living things in an ecosystem. Abiotic factors are things that are NOT living and have never lived.

Biotic factors in an environment are those things that are living, were once living or are made from living things. Trees (living), fallen leaves (were once living) and paper (made from living things) are examples of biotic factors.

click on the link to view a short (and SUPER) movie about biotic and abiotic factors. (Keep an eye out for one of those chickens I wrote about in the first assignment!)

Biotic and abiotic factors are very closely interrelated. Abiotic factors influence biotic factors and visa versa. Water, for example, is an abiotic factor that has a giant influence on the biotic elements found in an area. Cattails and beaver, sage brush and lizards are residents of very different habitats yet they can be separated by less than 100 yards if one is looking near the edge of a river in Southern Utah. Abiotic water is the factor that determines what biotic factors, like lizards or beaver, live in a certain area.

01.02 Take a Walk (Earth Systems)

This short video teaches the difference between abiotic and biotic factors.

01.02 Take a Walk (Earth Systems)

teacher-scored 10 points possible 90 minutes

TAKE A WALK!!!

INTRODUCTION:

Welcome to your first real assignment in your online Earth Systems class! And welcome to your first field trip!! Yes, for this, the first assignment, you must take a field trip. YIPPEE!

01.02 Field trip01.02 Field trip For this little field trip, you need only to take a short walk outside. Just get up and go!

Assignment:

Now for your task. Go outside and look around.

1. Make a list of TEN biotic factors that you see. Be as specific as possible. For example, instead of writing “flower”, write “dandelion”, “rose”, and “daisy”.

2. Make a list of TEN abiotic factors. Again, be as specific as possible.

3. Write down FIVE ways the abiotic and biotic factors influence each other. For example: The shade (abiotic) next to the house allows moss (biotic) to grow on the foundation. In your answer, IDENTIFY WHICH FACTOR IS BIOTIC AND WHICH IS ABIOTIC by putting them in (parentheses) like I did in the example answer above.

4. Describe a four-step energy pathway. Remember in Assignment 01.01 we discussed the concept of “Energy flows”. (Re-read it if you do not remember.) This is your chance to apply the concept. Show where the energy comes from, at least two organisms that capture and/or use the energy, and where the energy eventually goes. HINT: Most of the Earth’s energy comes from the sun. Plants, through a process called photosynthesis, capture the sun’s energy and make it usable for other living things. Here is an example of a four-step energy pathway. (You may NOT use my example!)

a. Energy from the sun is captured by the bean plant through photosynthesis

b. Energy is transferred from the bean leaf to the grasshopper when the grasshopper eats the bean.

c. A robin gets energy from the grasshopper when it eats it.

d. When the robin flies, energy its lost in the form of heat. The heat dissipates to space.

Now describe your own four-step energy pathway using organisms found on your walk.

5. What rating would you give the short (and SUPER) movie about biotic and abiotic factors?

a. "G" for Great

b. "PG" for Pretty Good

c. "R" for Ridiculous

d. ____________(fill in the blank)

Submit your list of TEN biotic factors, TEN abiotic factors, FIVE interactions, ONE four step energy pathway and a rating for the movie.

GOOD LUCK and HAVE FUN!

Pacing: complete this by the end of Week 2 of your enrollment date for this class.


01.03 ABC's of the Environment (Earth Systems)

When you tell someone where you live, you often tell him or her about the area in which your home is located before you mention the specific address. You may say “near the mountains”, “on the mesa”, “in the desert”, or “by the river bottom.” By saying this, you are furnishing important clues about the unique characteristics of your local environment: the climate, soil, vegetation, animal life, and even humans' use of the part of Utah you call home. All of these factors form what are sometimes called the “ABC’s of the environment.”

01.03 ABC triangle01.03 ABC triangle
In the ABC’s of the environment,

  • “A” refers to the abiotic (physical, non-living) features of the area.
  • “B” identifies the biotic (plant and animal) component of the environment.
  • “C” is the cultural (human) influences.


Some ecologists think of the ABC’s as forming a triangle with inter-relating sides. In a civilization as complex as ours, no single side can exist uninfluenced by others.

Your task will be to create an ABC PROFILE and to ANALYZE the data you collect in your profile.

01.03 ABC's of the Environment (Earth Systems)

teacher-scored 10 points possible 90 minutes

Assignment:

Your ABC Profile will identify the ABC’s of a natural environment near you. To make your ABC profile, select an area that is undeveloped (i.e. no buildings, no pavement, no bulldozing, no spraying of pesticides, no farming, no grazing, etc.). Your area must be at least the size of a football field. For some, this will be an easy walk from their homes. Others will have to travel quite a distance‑‑lucky you!! You can think of it as a field trip.

1. Make a map of Utah and show, approximately, where your area is located in Utah. You may make the map any way that is easy for you. You may hand-draw it and scan it and upload it in the assignment section. You may hand draw it and send it regular mail. You may use a computer program, such as Paint, to create it. You may find a map on the Internet and cut and paste it into your document. (If you do this, be sure to provide the web site from which you got it.)

2. Identify at least 10 “A” (abiotic) features of your area. (Estimates are acceptable.) Consider things such as:

  • slope (What is the angle of the land? Is it steep, hilly, flat?)
  • landforms (mesa, mountain, valley, bench, etc..)
  • altitude
  • soil (sandy, clay, rocky, loam, etc...)
  • annual precipitation
  • temperature range

3. Identify at least 15 “B” (biotic) features of the area. (You may use common names.) Consider things such as:

  • plants (trees, shrubs, grasses, flowers, etc...
  • mammals (rats, mice, fox, coyote, rabbit, etc...)
  • insects (ants, bees, praying mantis, etc...)
  • birds (robins, magpies, sparrow, hawk, etc...)
  • amphibians, reptiles, and/or fish

4. Identify at least 3 “C” (cultural) components. Look for evidence of man’s influence. Consider things such as:

  • recycling, conservation efforts
  • pollution
  • introduced species

ANALYSIS

Examine the data you collected when making your ABC profile. Use your collected data to answer the following questions.

USE COMPLETE SENTENCES TO ANSWER ALL THE QUESTIONS!

A. What effect does the environment (abiotic) have on the organisms (biotic) living there? Give FIVE specific examples from your profile. [For example: Lily pads (biotic) are able to grow in my area because it is a natural wetland that has standing, stagnant water (abiotic) all year long. ]

B. What effect do the organisms (biotic) have on the environment (abiotic)? Give THREE specific examples from your profile. [For example: The area is heavily shaded by spruce trees (biotic). The shade keeps the soil moist (abiotic) and reduces the air temperature.]

C. How do natural forces affect the area? Give ONE specific example from your profile. Consider the direction of the prevailing winds, the direction from which the sun’s rays come, gravity (if you are on a slope), etc...

D. How have humans affected your area? Give ONE specific example.

E. Predict how your area would change if the amount of rainfall doubled. Be sure to mention how this increase in rainfall would affect the abiotic and biotic factors.

 

F. Diagram the path of energy through the ecosystem you studied. Remember in Assignment 01.01 we discussed the concept of “Energy flows”. (Re-read it if you do not remember.) This is your chance to apply the concept. Show where the energy comes from, at least two organisms that capture and/or use the energy, and where the energy eventually goes. [You also wrote an energy path in assignment 01.02]

HINT: Most of the Earth’s energy comes from the sun. Plants, through a process called photosynthesis, capture the sun’s energy and make it usable to other living things. Here is an example of a four step energy pathway. (You may NOT use my example!)

1. Energy from the sun is captured by the bean plant through photosynthesis

2. Energy is transferred from the bean leaf to the grasshopper when the grasshopper eats the bean.

3. A robin gets energy from the grasshopper when it eats it.

4. When the robin flies, energy is lost in the form of heat. The heat dissipates to space.

Now, describe your own 4-step energy pathway using organisms found in the area you studied.

Submit the completed ABC Profile and the Analysis. If you have completed the ABC Profile as outlined and have used complete sentences to adequately answer all the analysis questions, you will receive a good grade.

GOOD LUCK and HAVE FUN!!!!

Pacing: complete this by the end of Week 3 of your enrollment date for this class.


01.04 Comparing Biomes (Earth Systems)

FROM YOUR BIOME TO MINE
01.04 Biomes01.04 Biomes
















In your last assignment, you described a portion of the biome in which you live. A biome is a major biotic community that is classified by its predominant vegetation and is characterized by organisms adapted to its particular environment. Basically, what that means is that a biome is an area that has certain types of plants and animals that are adapted to its climate.

Most of Utah is classified as a semiarid desert biome.

  • What plants are typically found in Utah?
  • What animals are native to Utah? (Native means that they were here naturally and were not imported to the area by mankind.)
  • How are Utah’s native animals adapted to its environment?

These are just a few of the questions one might ask about Utah’s biome.

As I am the teacher of this course, I am going to ask you a few questions about biomes. And, as you are the student, you get to answer them. Isn’t this fun?

Have you ever been to the ocean? If so, lucky you! If not, I hope that you get to visit an ocean some day. As you have seen (either in real life or on a screen) an ocean biome is very different from Utah's semi-arid desert biome.

Have you ever driven through American's midwestern states? Before the western expansion, the America's middle was a vast grassland. (Finding native grasslands in the midwest is more difficult now though there are pockets of grasslands protected as nature preserves.) Grasslands are very different from both the ocean biome and Utah's semi-arid biome.

01.04 Comparing Biomes (Earth Systems)

01.04 Comparing Biomes (Earth Systems)

teacher-scored 10 points possible 90 minutes

In this assignment you will compare these three very different biomes: semiarid desert (as found in Central Utah), ocean (as found on the Oregon coast), and grassland (as found in the Broken Kettle Nature Preserve in Iowa).

For each of the three biomes (DESERT, GRASSLAND, OCEAN) , describe the following:

1. predominant plants: List at least THREE plants that are characteristic of each biome; that is, the plants that are found more commonly in that biome than anywhere else.

2. characteristic animals: List at least THREE animals that are typically found in each biome. Again, this means that the animals are more likely to be found in the specific biome than anywhere else.

3. relative biomass (Biomass is the mass of the biotic factors in an area. Areas with huge numbers of plants generally have a high biomass; areas with low numbers of plants have a lower biomass. This is a comparison only. State whether the relative biomass is low, medium, or high for each biome.)

4. path of energy flow through each biome. Your energy path must have at least four steps. For example, the following is an energy pathway through a tropical forest biome:

  • Energy from the sun enters bromeliad through photosynthesis.
  • Energy from bromeliad goes to ant after it eats the nectar.
  • Energy from ant goes to chimpanzee when it eats the ant.
  • Energy from chimp dissipates to space in the form of heat when it throws bananas at the tourists.

 

You are supposed to describe all three biomes---ocean, grassland, and desert. Please describe the plants, animals, biomass, and energy path for all three biomes.

You may create a chart to display the information you find, you may list it in columns, or you may write it out in paragraph form. The precise format of your assignment does not matter. The information you include DOES matter. Include the four pieces of information listed above for each of the three biomes, and you will earn a good grade. Good luck and have fun!

Pacing: complete this by the end of Week 4 of your enrollment date for this class.


01.05 Interactions: Algae and Fertilizer (Earth Systems)

Introduction:
We have looked at abiotic and biotic factors and have identified their interactions. We have looked at various plant and animal communities (biomes) and have traced how energy flows through a biome. Now it is time to experiment with how biotic factors interact with abiotic factors. That's right! This assignment is an experiment.

Let’s talk for a moment about experiments. Or rather, I will write. You read and learn.

Scientists use experiments to find out how things work. In an experiment, scientists change one thing and carefully observe and document how that change affects other things.

In an experiment you manipulate a variable; that is, you change one aspect of a situation (the variable) and document what effect the change had. It is important that you have only one variable. If you have more than one variable, you will not know which of the things you changed caused the results that you observe.

For example, suppose you add fertilizer and bleach to a sample of pond water and you observe that the algae in the water die. You will not know which of your variables, fertilizer or bleach, caused the algae to die. To make your experiment valid, you would have to choose one variable: either bleach OR fertilizer.

You must also have a control. The control is the part of the experiment that you do not change. The control represents what is “normal.”

How do the variable and the control work together in an experiment?

For example, suppose you decide you want to find out what the effect of fertilizer is on the growth of algae in pond water. You must get TWO identical samples of pond water. You will add fertilizer to one. The fertilizer is your variable. You will leave the other alone. The one that you leave alone is the control. The experiment will explore how the variable, i.e. the fertilizer, affects the growth of algae in pond water.

A control is necessary so that you can compare the results of your experimental variable, the fertilizer in this case, to what happens without the variable. Let us pretend for a moment that you did not use a control. You put fertilizer in the water, put it in the sunlight and checked it every day for ten days. Nothing happens. You don’t know if the fertilizer killed the algae or if the algae was never there to grow in the first place. If you have a control, and algae in the control grew, but algae did not grow in the variable, then you can probably conclude that the fertilizer killed the algae. Remember to use a CONTROL in your experiment.

Another hint about designing experiments: Experiments must be replicable. That is, in order for an experiment to be valid, others should be able to do exactly what you do and should be able to obtain the same results as you do. In order for this to be possible, your experimental plan must be very precise. An instruction that says “Add a little bit of fertilizer to a cup of water” is NOT precise. Exactly how much is a “little bit”? A “little bit” for one person may be very different than what a “little bit” is for another person. And what does “a cup” mean? Does it mean exactly 1 cup or does it mean to fill up a drinking glass? Give specific directions. Use exact measurements, such as ¼ teaspoon or 5 ml or 1 ounce.

Just as your instructions need to be precise, so does the collection of your data. Use measurements when collecting your data. Do NOT write things like “The variable had a little bit more algal growth than the control.” This is not a measurement and it is not precise. Instead, measure how much more (or how much less) algal growth was found in the variable.

01.05 Interactions: Algae and Fertilizer (Earth Systems)

teacher-scored 10 points possible 180 minutes

The experiment rubric (see either version of attachment) outlines what is expected in your experiment. It also shows how your experiment will be scored. Click on the "Experiment Rubric" link and review what is expected.

We use many chemicals that affect the Earth’s spheres. Simple things like the Miracle-Gro that you spray on your flowers may be affecting nearby streams or even far-off lakes. How does fertilizer affect our water? Finding out is your task.

01.05 fertilizer01.05 fertilizer Materials:

· sample of water that is NOT drinkable. The water may come from a pond, creek, stream, canal, reservoir, river or puddle.

· fertilizer (any type will work)

· available light source for algae growth (anything light that could make a plant grow)

Assignment:

You need to know that most non-treated water if left in a sunny location, will show increased algae growth in about 7-10 days. The water will become greener and murkier. Use this fact when you are planning your experiment.

1. Determine what you want to find out when you do your experiment. Do you want to know the effect of fertilizer on algae growth in pond water? [HINT: Yes, you do want to find out the effect of fertilizer on algae growth in pond water.] Write this down in QUESTION form.

2. Predict what you think the outcome of your experiment will be. Use the following format for writing your prediction: IF I add fertilizer to pond water, THEN___________(Fill in the blank with what you think will happen.) This is your HYPOTHESIS.

3. Design an experiment to test your prediction. Be very specific. Tell me exactly what you plan to do. Tell me how much of everything you plan on using. Tell me how long you plan on running the experiment and how often you will check it. Tell me how you will record your data. I want details!!!

01.0501.05 4. STOP!!! Submit your experimental design to me in the gradebook assignmnet 1.05 before go any further. I promise to give you feedback on your design within three days. If the design is scientifically sound, you may go ahead and conduct your experiment. If it has flaws, we will work together until you have designed a valid, reliable experiment---then you may go ahead and conduct your experiment.

5. AFTER you have received my go-ahead, conduct your experiment. Be sure to keep detailed lab notes. Your lab notes should contain a record of everything you did as well as all the data you collected.

6. When you are done collecting your data, answer the analysis questions below.

ANALYSIS

Before you submit your assignment, it would be a GREAT idea to re-check the "Experimental Rubric" (see attachment) to make sure that your experiments meets all of the requirements.

1. Re-send me your original question, your hypothesis, and your experimental plan.

2. Send me your lab notes. I want to the observations that you recorded. Do not simply send me a summary of your results. I want to see a record of your daily observations.

3. Based on your observations, write a conclusion. What does your data tell you? What did you learn from your experimental results?

4. What kind of relationships did you find between biotic and abiotic factors?

5. Do your findings support your hypothesis? Why or why not?

6. If you were to do this again, what would you change? Why?

7. What additional experiments could be performed?

8. What effects would a dairy farm have on a pond downstream?

Please, submit the information requested in analysis questions 1-8 into the gradebook.

GOOD LUCK AND HAVE FUN!

Pacing: complete this by the end of Week 4 of your enrollment date for this class.


01.06 More Interactions: Design an Experiment (Earth Systems)

Introduction:
You have just completed an experiment that explored the interaction between an abiotic factor (fertilizer) and a biotic factor (algae). Now your task is to design and conduct an experiment that explores the interaction between an abiotic and biotic factor of your choice. WOW! How exciting is that! You get to choose, and the world is your laboratory.

The options are limitless. All you have to do is choose an abiotic factor and a biotic factor and design an experiment that tests how they interact.

I will give you an example of an experiment that explores the relationship between the abiotic factor sunlight and biotic plants. THIS IS ONLY AN EXAMPLE. You may NOT use this experiment for this assignment. [Most of you did this experiment in second grade!]

The question might be “What is the effect of sunlight on pansies?”
01.06 pansies01.06 pansies
The hypothesis might be “If I put pansies in a dark closet then they will not grow as well as pansies put on a lighted windowsill.”

The experimental plan could be:

1. Get six pansies (a type of flowering plant) that are the same species and as close to the same size as possible.

2. Put three pansies in the closet and three pansies on the windowsill in the sunlight.

3. Water all six plants the same.

4. Visually inspect the plants once a day for 14 days.

5. Daily measure the height of each plant and count the number of healthy leaves. Record your observations on a data table.

See how easy it is? Remember, you cannot do an experiment with sunlight and plants for two reasons. One, you already know what the result will be. You did this already in second grade! Two, I have already outlined the experiment. Part of what you need to learn in this class is how to design your own experiment. You cannot learn that by doing an experiment that I have already designed! So, off you go. Be creative. Design your own experiment. But wait! Be sure to read the directions before you do anything!!!!!

01.06 More Interactions: Design an Experiment (Earth Systems)

teacher-scored 10 points possible 180 minutes

If you need to review the basics about how to design an experiment, click on the "Experiment Guidelines" document above.

Materials:

· Whatever you decide

Assignment:

Click on the "Rubric Experiment" document above to find out how your experiment will be scored.

1. Determine what you want to find out when you do your experiment. Write down the QUESTION that you are trying to answer. If you are having trouble coming up with a question, look outside. Make a list of 10 biotic factors and 10 abiotic factors. Then think of ways that the biotic things interact with the abiotic things. Think of experiments you could do to test how the factors interact.

2. Predict what you think the outcome of your experiment will be. (Hypothesis)

3. Design an experiment to test your prediction. Remember to include a control. Be very specific. Tell me exactly what you plan to do. Tell me how much of everything you plan on using. Tell me how long you plan on running the experiment and how often you will check it. Tell me how you will record your data. I want details!!!

01.0601.06 4. STOP!!! Submit your experimental design to me via email before going any further. I promise to give you feedback on your design within three days. If the design is scientifically sound, you may go ahead and conduct your experiment. If it has flaws, we will work together until you have designed a valid, reliable experiment---then you may go ahead and conduct your experiment.

5. AFTER you have received my go-ahead, conduct your experiment. Be sure to keep detailed lab notes. Your lab notes should contain a record of everything you did as well as all the data you collected. Each entry on your lab notes should be dated. (Month/day/year) 6. Follow the directions below to submit your assignment.

ANALYSIS

1. Re-send me your original question, your hypothesis, and your experimental plan.

2. Send me your lab notes. I want to the observations that you recorded. Do not simply send me a summary of your results. I want to see a record of your observations.

3. Based on your observations, write a conclusion. What does your data tell you? What did you learn from your experimental results?

4. What kind of relationships did you find between biotic and abiotic factors? 5. Do your findings support your hypothesis? Why or why not? 6. If you were to do this again, what would you change? Why?

7. What additional experiments could be performed?

Please, send me the information requested in analysis questions A-G.

GOOD LUCK AND HAVE FUN!

Pacing: complete this by the end of Week 5 of your enrollment date for this class.


01.07 Biodiversity (Earth Systems)

Biodiversity: Who Cares?
01.07 biodiversity01.07 biodiversity
INTRODUCTION:

Biodiversity is a word that one hears a lot these days if one listens to nature shows or reads scientific magazines. The word is not used as often on YouTube or on Facebook.

Anyhow, biodiversity is a very important concept in science. Just what does it mean? Look at the word. The prefix “bio” means life. Diversity means “variety”. So, biodiversity means a variety of life forms. In science biodiversity refers to the types of different species found in an area. A tropical rainforest has a tremendous amount of biodiversity. That is to say, there are many, many, MANY different species of plants and animals found in a tropical rainforest. A desert does not have as many different types of species; therefore, we say that a desert has less biodiversity than a tropical rainforest does.

01.07 Biodiversity (Earth Systems)

01.07 Biodiversity (Earth Systems)

teacher-scored 10 points possible 120 minutes

Who cares?

You do. Or you don’t.

Whether you do or you don’t, you get the opportunity in this assignment to evaluate the biological, aesthetic, ethical, and economic reasons for maintaining biodiversity. Read on for more details about your assignment.

ASSIGNMENT:

Write a 500-700 word essay that evaluates the biological, aesthetic, ethical, and economic reasons for maintaining biodiversity.

* Your paper should be divided into the sections listed below.

* Each section MUST contain a quote from an Internet source. You may use a quote with which you agree or a quote with which you disagree.

* In each section you must say why you either agree or disagree with the source.

* You must put the quote in quotation marks.

* You must site your source (i.e. give the Internet address for the source.)

I will not accept the paper if you list only your own opinions. You MUST include a quote in every section.

1. First section: Biological reasons to maintain biodiversity. Is maintaining biodiversity important for the biosphere? Why or why not?

2. Second section: Aesthetic reasons to maintain biodiversity. Aesthetic refers to beauty. Is maintaining biodiversity important for aesthetic reasons? Why or why not?

3. Third section: Ethical reasons for maintaining biodiversity. Ethical arguments refer to what is right and what is wrong. Is it ethical to reduce biodiversity? Why or why not?

4. Fourth section: Economic reasons for maintaining biodiversity. Economics deal with money. Is it economical to maintain biodiversity?

5. Fifth section:

What is your opinion?

Should we maintain biodiversity?

Should we maintain biodiversity at all costs, no matter what?

Should we maintain biodiversity in some cases and not others?

When should biodiversity be maintained?

When is biodiversity to be sacrificed to other considerations?

Should biodiversity be ignored when making decisions about land use?

What do you think?

Why?

Be sure to include reasons for your opinion. When you have completed the entire assignment, send it to me. If you have followed the instructions, you will receive a good grade.

GOOD LUCK AND HAVE FUN!!

Pacing: complete this by the end of Week 5 of your enrollment date for this class.


01.08 Tectonic Plates and Nature of Science (Earth Systems)

PLATE TECTONICS

Before you start this assignment, it is important that I introduce some new ideas.

We have looked at the Earth’s Biosphere. Remember, the biosphere is the area in, on, and around the Earth that contains living things. Now we are going to investigate the geosphere or Earth’s Geologic System.
Four spheresFour spheres
Geology has to do with rocks, rock cycles, and rock formation. We use the word GEOSPHERE to describe all systems and parts of systems dealing with the solid portion of the Earth. This includes rocks of all sizes, the Earth’s crust and the inner parts of the Earth (some of which are not solid!).

The other Earth systems have names as well. In the previous assignments, you studied the BIOSPHERE. The biosphere encompasses all life on Earth. In subsequent quarters, you will study the ATMOSPHERE and the HYDROSPHERE as well. The atmosphere describes the Earth’s gases, particularly those that form a “blanket” covering the Earth’s surface. The hydrosphere refers to the Earth’s water and all of its associated systems.

There you have it! The four major Earth systems: biosphere, geosphere, atmosphere, and hydrosphere. Now we will begin our exploration of the geosphere.

Introduction:

Many people view science as cold, hard facts that are indisputable. In reality, there is a lot more to science than cold, hard fact. In fact, many of science facts are not cold, hard truths. Scientific knowledge is the best explanation we have at the time for what we see. As we learn more and are better able to see things, scientific theories may, and often do, change. Science claims are tentative.

It is important to note that science knowledge is based on evidence. Scientists collect, measure, and analyze data. They base their theories and explanations on the evidence that they collect. As they collect more evidence, their knowledge and explanations can change.

The goal of science is to produce a systematized body of knowledge that has explanatory and predictive power. We want to understand things. We seek understanding by observing natural phenomena but, because scientists are human (believe it or not, science teachers are human also!), their observations are influenced by their prior knowledge, experience, and beliefs. Also, because they are human and because science is always seeking new understandings, the problems that science investigates, the methods they use, and the way they interpret evidence changes from time to time.

"Just what does all this have to do with plate tectonics?" You ask. Plate tectonics is a theory that has explanatory and predictive powers. It has been developed and modified over the centuries by scientists whose observations and explanations were influenced by their personal beliefs and prior knowledge. The story of the development of the theory of plate tectonics is a story of science in action.

01.08 Tectonic Plates and Nature of Science (Earth Systems)

01.08 Tectonic Plates and Nature of Science (Earth Systems)

teacher-scored 10 points possible 60 minutes

Science in action---this is the object of our study.

In this assignment, you will see that scientists do not always agree, that explanations change as more information becomes available, that creative thinking and imagination are vital to scientific endeavors, and that science produces a growing, changing body of knowledge. In the process, you will also learn about the theory of plate tectonics. Sounds fun, doesn’t it?

Assignment:

· Go to the USGS Publication called “This Dynamic Earth” in the URL's.

· Scroll down to CONTENTS and click on “Historical Perspective”.

· At the end of each screen, click on the arrow pointing to the right until you have read “Developing the Theory”

· Scroll through “Understanding Plate Motions” and “Hotspots” and then read “Some Unanswered Questions”.

· Fill out the following worksheet as you go through the screens.

· The other web sites in the URL's also have some excellent, easy-to-understand information on plate tectonics.

PLATE TECTONICS WORKSHEET--Use complete sentences to answer the questions.

1. James Hutton developed the “Uniformitarian Principle” which, simply stated, says that “The present is the key to the past.” What does this mean in terms of geology?

2. What is the theory of continental drift?

3. Who developed the idea of continental drift into a full blown, scientific theory? When?

4. What scientific data was used to support the theory of continental drift? Identify and explain at least four types of evidence.

5. What were the problems with the theory of continental drift?

6. Imagine that you are a scientist living at the time that Wagner proposed his theory. What might you have thought of his theory? What biases might you have had that would influence your acceptance of the theory?

7. The theory of continental drift evolved into the theory of plate tectonics. What four scientific developments influenced the development of the plate tectonics theory?

8. What is ocean floor mapping?

9. How did ocean floor mapping provide evidence for plate tectonics?

10. What is magnetic striping and polar reversal?

11.How did magnetic striping and polar reversal provide evidence for plate tectonics?

12. What is sea floor spreading?

13. How did sea floor spreading give evidence for plate tectonics?

14. If the sea floor is getting bigger, why isn’t the Earth getting bigger? Explain.

15.How does the concentration of earthquakes and volcanoes give evidence for plate tectonics?

16.What drives the plates?

17. The website says “Both the Earth’s surface and its interior are in motion.” Some believe that the Earth is solid. How does its interior move?

18. Describe convection currents.

19. How do convection currents relate to plate tectonics?

20. Until 1990 (not very long ago when you consider the original idea was formalized in 1912), most scientists believed that sea floor spreading was the primary force making the plates move. What is now considered to be the driving force of plate tectonics?

21. The fact that plates moved in the past and that they still move today is considered beyond dispute by most scientists. What do scientists still have to learn about plate tectonics?

22. At the beginning of the assignment, I promised you that the story of the theory of plate tectonics was a story of science in action. How was it a story of science in action? How does the development of the theory of plate tectonics illustrate how scientific theories change?

23. Science defines the word "theory" in a different way than the word "theory" is used by the general public.   In science, what is a theory? Can theories change? Who makes theories? What has to happen to a scientific explanation for it to become a theory?

Grading

Send me your answers to the worksheet questions. If your answers are written in complete sentences, are accurate, and reflect good thinking, you will receive a good grade.

GOOD LUCK AND HAVE FUN!

Pacing: complete this by the end of Week 6 of your enrollment date for this class.


01.09 What is Happening on Your Plate: Plate movements (Earth Systems)

What’s Happening on Your Plate?

01.09 The seven plates01.09 The seven plates

Introduction:

So, the globe is covered with plates! (See assignment 01.08) How many plates are there? What is happening on your plate? What is happening on other plates?

01.09 What is Happening on Your Plate: Plate movements (Earth Systems)

01.09 What is Happening on Your Plate: Plate movements (Earth Systems)

teacher-scored 10 points possible 60 minutes

Use complete sentences to answer ALL questions. If you do not use complete sentences, I will probably return the assignment to you and ask you to re-do it.

The Internet sites in the URL's will be of great use to you in completing the assignment below.

And here is the actual assignment! Have fun!

1. What are the names of the seven major plates?

2. Write a paragraph explaining what happens at a convergent boundary. How do the plates move? What is the result of plate motion at a convergent boundary?

3. Name at least one place in the world where there is a convergent plate boundary.

4. Write a paragraph explaining what happens at a divergent boundary. How do the plates move? What is the result of plate motion at a divergent boundary?

5. Name at least one place in the world where there is a divergent plate boundary.

6. Write a paragraph explaining what happens at a transform plate boundary. How do the plates move? What is the result of plate motion at a transform plate boundary?

7. Name at least one place in the world where there is a transform plate boundary.

8. Convection currents are energy sources that cause plates to move. How do convection currents cause plates to move?

9. What is the relationship between density and convection currents? [Hint: Warm material is less dense than cool material.]

10. Gravity is another energy source that causes plates to move. How does gravity cause plates to move?

11. Relate the movement and interaction of the plates to volcanic eruptions. In other words, what happens at plate boundaries that causes volcanic eruptions?

12. Relate the movement and interactions of the plates to mountain building? How does plate movement create non-volcanic mountains?

13. Relate the movement and interactions of the plates to climate changes. How does plate movement and interactions change the climate?

Send the answers to ALL of these questions to me. You do NOT have to send me the questions but you DO have to use complete sentences to answer all the questions.

Pacing: complete this by the end of Week 6 of your enrollment date for this class.


01.10 Model Plate Movements (Earth Systems)

Modeling the Earth’s Movement Hello! I hope you are feeling inventive, because this assignment will tap your creative powers. Your task is to make a model. What is a model? In science a model is something that represents a scientific principal or phenomenon. Often a model shows how something in science works. For example, a terrarium could be a model for an ecosystem; it shows how abiotic and biotic factors interact. Or, a heated balloon might be a model for weather; it shows that warm air rises. Your task is to make models showing several ways that matter moves within the Earth. And how does one make a model and show it to a teacher via the Internet? That is where you must get creative! You must MAKE your models. You may NOT copy diagrams from the Internet (or anywhere else!). * You may use any materials that you wish to make your model. I have seen models made of cake, Play-Dough, wood, and hands, to name a few.   * Below are two examples of models Keaton created with bread and jam. You may NOT copy Keaton’s models. Do NOT use bread and jam for your model. 01.10 bread and jam model01.10 bread and jam model 01.10 transverse margin model01.10 transverse margin model

01.10 Model Plate Movements (Earth Systems)

01.10 Model Plate Movements (Earth Systems)

teacher-scored 10 points possible 90 minutes

Assignment You are to make FOUR models.   A model is a physical representation.  It is NOT a drawing.  It is NOT a computer generated graphic.  A model uses physical objects to represent what is happening with plate tectonics.

1. Make a model of the movement of materials within the Earth. Show how convection currents move materials within the Earth.

2. Make a model of a convergent plate boundary.

3. Make a model of a divergent plate boundary.

4. Make a model of a transverse (also called transform) plate boundary.

You must MAKE the models. You may NOT copy diagrams from the Internet. You must figure out a way to show me your model.

Following are a few suggestions:

* Make a Power Point presentation and upload it.

* Make a poster and send me pictures of the poster.

* Make a model, take pictures, and send me the pictures, or post a video on YouTube. If you do this, the pictures must be close-ups. If the shot is too far away for me to see the details of the model, you will not get credit.

* Use some other idea that you have that I have not been smart enough to think of. The Internet site in the URL's may be useful to you.

GOOD LUCK AND HAVE FUN!

Pacing: complete this by the end of Week 7 of your enrollment date for this class.


01.11 Volcanoes (Earth Systems)

01.1101.11
Introduction:

Hopefully by now you are getting the idea that all these systems are connected. It is now time to study how geologic systems affect other systems. In the assignment that follows, I suggest that you study the effect volcanoes have on other Earth systems. You do not have to use volcanoes to study the effect of geologic process on other Earth systems. If you are more interested in other geologic processes, such as earthquakes, sedimentation, pond succession, or something else, you may study a different geologic process. If you chose an alternative process, make sure that you clear it with me first. (An email message will work fine.)
01.11 volcano01.11 volcano

01.11 Volcanoes (Earth Systems)

01.11 Volcanoes (Earth Systems)

teacher-scored 10 points possible 60 minutes

If volcanoes interest you, read on!

Assignment:

You are to make a presentation about the effect that volcanoes have on other Earth systems. You chose how you want to make the presentation. Do NOT write a report.   You get to write plenty of reports in this and other classes.   You do not need practice writing a report.  Do not write a report.

You may make a video, a poster, write a poem, compose a song, or something else that would convey the necessary information. You decide how you want to present the information. All I require is that the required information is present in your presentation.

Required information:

  1. How do volcanoes benefit man? Identify at least eight.
  2. What are volcanoes' detrimental effects on man? Identify at least four.
  3. How do volcanoes affect other Earth systems, particularly climate? Explain in detail.

The sites in the URLs should help you with your presentation:

Grading:

Originality will help you score points with this assignment. The more original your presentation is, the better your score will be.  If your presentation is original and includes the required information, you will get a good grade.

GOOD LUCK AND HAVE FUN!

Pacing: complete this by the end of Week 7 of your enrollment date for this class.


01.12 Predict Future (Earth Systems)

PREDICTING THE FUTURE

Systems, systems, systems! Is that all we ever talk about in this class? Almost! Once again we are going to examine the Earth’s systems. This time we are going to do so from a geologic perspective. How does the movement of the Earth’s plates affect the other Earth systems?

One of the assumptions of science is that the forces that we observe acting on the Earth today are the same forces that acted upon Earth in the past, and that those same forces will act the same way in the future. [See assignment 1.10.] Thus gravity, electricity, magnetism, etc. worked the same way a million years ago as they do today, and they will work the same way in a million years.

This is a long way of saying that volcanoes, uplift, mountain building, etc. will have the same effect in the future as they do now. Use what you know about how those forces operate on Earth now to predict what would happen if those things were to happen in the future.

Pretend to look into the future.

Looking into the future, pretend to witness the movement of the Earth’s plates. What would you see? Use what you know to predict how plate movement will affect other Earth systems.

01.12 Predict Future (Earth Systems)

teacher-scored 10 points possible 45 minutes

Write a short paragraph (2 to 3 sentences) to describe what would happen in EACH of the following scenarios.

You need to write a paragraph for each scenario.

Assignment

1. How do volcanic eruptions affect the weather? [NOTE: Weather is the day-to-day condition of the atmosphere. For example the weather may be rainy one day and sunny the next.]

2. How do volcanic eruptions affect the climate? [NOTE: Climate is a long term description of the average temperature and precipitation of an area. For example, much of Southern Utah has a desert climate because it is usually hot and dry.]

3. How does mountain building affect waterways and drainage patterns? (NOTE: Mountain building is when mountains are built up by forces within the Earth, usually convergent margins.)

4. How might uplift affect species diversity? [NOTE: Uplift is when forces inside the Earth cause massive pieces of the Earth's crust to be lifted up. Uplift causes mountains or high plateaus to exist where there was previously low ground.]

5. How might the rising of super heated water from vents deep in the ocean's floor affect the ocean biome?

6. Identify AND explain how the movement of the plates affects a matter cycle.

7. Identify AND explain how the movement of the plates affects energy flow in the Earth.

WOW! That was easy--only seven questions. If you answered all seven questions correctly and used complete sentences, you will earn a GREAT grade.

GOOD LUCK AND HAVE FUN!

Pacing: complete this by the end of Week 8 of your enrollment date for this class.


01.13 The End (Earth Systems)

The End

You have done it!! Congratulations! You are done with all of the assignments. (If you are not done with all of the assignments, please go back and finish them BEFORE you do this assignment.) You have nearly earned your .25 first quarter credit.
01.1301.13

01.13 The End (Earth Systems)

teacher-scored 10 points possible 30 minutes

All that remains is a final course evaluation, a practice exam, and the final itself. Please complete the final course evaluation and the practice exam below.

DO NOT DO THIS UNTIL YOU HAVE COMPLETED ALL OF THE PREVIOUS ASSIGNMENTS.

PART ONE:

1. If you were to give this course a grade, what grade would you give it?

2. List the three assignments which were the most educational for you. Explain why you liked them.

3. List the three assignments which were the biggest waste of time for you. Explain why they were a waste of time.

4. What things (if any) did you like about the course?

5. What things (if any) need to be changed?

6. Do you want to enroll in second quarter? If so, after you have passed the final exam and your grade has been sent to your local school, you can request second quarter.

PART TWO:

Please complete the practice exam below. I will correct it and send you the results. This practice exam will be very helpful for you in taking the final. Practice Exam

FIRST QUARTER:

1. Which of the following is an abiotic factor?
a. cat
b. wood
c. daisy
d. sunshine

2. The part of a the experiment that is used as a basis for comparison is the:
a. control
b. procedure
c. hypothesis
d. variable

3. In a lake organisms die and decompose. Decomposition uses large amounts of oxygen that was dissolved in the lake’s water. The reduced level of oxygen in the lake would determine which of the following?
a. the number of trees living around the lake
b. the amount of rain water reaching the lake
c. the amount of clouds covering the lake
d. the kinds of water beetles living in the lake

4. You want to design an experiment that tests the influence of biotic factors on plant growth. Which biotic factor could you test?
a. types of insects infecting the plant
b. amount of water the plant gets
c. intensity of sunlight reaching the plant
d. amounts of nitrogen that fertilizer the plant.

5. James wanted to find out how many hummingbirds lived in the city compared to the forest. He in a one-acre area in the city, he found 23 hummingbirds. In a one acre area in the forest, he found 3 hummingbirds. He concluded that hummingbirds always prefer cities to forests.
a. The conclusion is invalid because James did not examine every city and every forest in the world.
b. The statement is invalid because it is difficult to determine the exact number of hummingbirds in an area.
c. The statement is valid because James did not find very many hummingbirds in the forest.
d. The statement is valid because James had a large sample size.
e. The statement is valid because James’ hypothesis matched his conclusion.

6. Ginger wanted to analyze the relationship between biotic and abiotic factors in a grassland biome. Which of the following would be suitable subjects for study?
a. The relationship between amount of cloud cover and daytime temperatures.
b. The relationship between soil moisture and types of grasses present.
c. The relationship between the number of hawks and number of rabbits.
d. The relationship between number of grass plants and gopher holes.
e. The relationship between rainfall and stream volume.

7.In an investigation on salamander habitat sites, Juan’s hypothesis was “There will be more salamanders found under rocks than on the bottom of the pond in the water.” Juan lifted up all the rocks in a pond and found 13 salamanders. In the water, on the bottom of the pond, he found 33 salamanders.

What variable was Juan testing?
a. The location salamanders prefer.
b. The relative water temperature of the pond.
c. Salamander eating preferences.
d. The relationship between light levels and rock types at the bottom of a pond.

8. Juan’s conclusion, based on his data, was that more salamanders are found at the bottom of the pond than under rocks. Which of the following statements about his conclusion is right?
a. The conclusion is invalid because it disagrees with the hypothesis.
b. The conclusion is invalid because salamanders prefer hiding under rocks.
c. The conclusion is valid because there were significantly more salamanders found on the pond bottom than found under rocks.
d. The conclusion is valid because amphibians prefer hidden areas.
e. The experiment is a failure because the hypothesis was wrong.

 Use the diagram below to answer the following questions.
 

9.  What would happen if the mice were taken out of this food web?
a. The whole food web would collapse.
b. There would be less grass for the mice.
c. The gull population would get smaller.
d. The fox population would get smaller.
e. The fox population would increase.

10.  What would happen if the bacteria were taken out of the food web?
a. Foxes would over populate and kill off the rabbits.
b. Dead plants and animals would not decompose.
c. The number of gulls would increase.
d. Snakes and foxes would eat all of the mice.
e. Snakes would get sick and die.

 

A farmer wants to know how to get more ears of corn from his land. You are going to conduct an experiment to help him. You decide to plant 10 corn seeds in 10 different pots. You fertilize 5 plants with a 100 ml of a 5% fertilizer solution once weekly and 5 plants with 100 ml of a 25% fertilizer solution once weekly.

11. Which of the following is a research question about the farmer’s problem?
a. How do you keep the deer from eating the corn?
b. How tall can a corn stalk grow?
c. How can you get more ears of corn?
d. How can you get more plants on his land?

12. Which of the following hypothesis are you testing with your experiment?
a. If you water the plant more, you will get more corn.
b. If you fertilize the plant more, you will get more corn.
c. If you spread out the plants more, you will get more corn.
d. If you give the plant more light, you will get more corn.

13. Consider the claim “All life is interdependent.” What would be at least one thing that would have to happen for this claim to be called a theory?
a. It would have to be supported by a lot of data that had been tested repeatedly.
b. The claim would have to be proven to be true by the scientific community.
c. Ecosystems would have to depend on biodiversity.
d. Science would have to start accepting new theories.

14. Which biome has the least biomass in a given area?
a. Tropical rainforest
b. Desert
c. Deciduous forest
d. Grassland

15. What kind of evidence do scientists use to locate boundaries of plates and interpret what type of boundary is present?
a. matching fossil records
b. similar rock layers
c. distribution of earthquakes and volcanoes
d. the way the continental coastlines fit together like a puzzle.

16. What kind of movement on a plate boundary causes sea floor spreading?
a. Convergent movement
b. Divergent movement
c. Transform movement
d. Biome movement

17. Which of the following discoveries caused science to re-evaluate its opinion of Wagner’s hypothesis about continental drift?
a. Sea floor spreading in the Atlantic Ocean.
b. Sea floor spreading in the Pacific Ocean
c. The coastlines of Africa and South America have similar fossils.
d. Volcanic activity in the Hawaiian islands.

18. Where are volcanoes most likely to occur on Earth?
a. They are spread evenly around the globe.
b. On plate boundaries.
c. On continents.
d. On the sea floor.
e. In mountains.

19. How does energy flow through an ecosystem?
a. The sun’s energy is captured by plants during photosynthesis and eventually returns to space as heat.
b. Energy from the sun is used in the ecosystem and then it returns to the sun.
c. Energy from the sun is captured by animals to make sugars and fats.
d. The sun’s energy is captured by oxygen molecules, which causes respiration.

20. Tana designed an experiment to measure how insulation affects the absorption of solar energy. She covered one Styrofoam cup with a nylon sock and a paper cup with a cotton sock. She left a third glass cup uncovered. She filled all three cups with 100 ml of room temperature water and set them in the sun. After 60 minutes, she measured the temperature of each of the cups.

Which of the following statements accurately describes Tana’s experimental design?
a. The design was valid because Tess measured the absorption of solar energy.
b. The design is valid because she used two variables: different materials as well as different types of cups.
c. The design is flawed because she used two variables: different materials as well as different types of cups.
d. The design is flawed because water temperature cannot be used as an indicator of the absorption of solar energy.
e. The design is flawed because 60 minutes is not long enough to measure the absorption of solar energy

21. Explain how the energy you use to dance at the Prom originally came from the sun. Be specific in describing how the energy flows from the sun to you on the dance floor. Use at least four steps.

Once I have received the above information, I will correct your practice exam and will give you feedback.

STUDY WELL FOR THE FINAL EXAM.

It is very similar to this practice exam. IF you do NOT pass the final exam, you will NOT get credit for the course. PERIOD.

You MUST pass the final exam with 60% or better to earn credit for the course. PERIOD.

The good news is that the final is very similar to the practice exam. If you have done the assignments and studied the practice exam, the final should be easy for you.

IMPORTANT NOTE:    When you take the final exam, the computer will give you a score.  This is NOT your real score.  The score the computer gives you will be lower than your real score because there is at least one essay question on the final exam that I have to grade before your real score can be calculated.    Do not panic when you see a low score.   If your essay question is correct, it could add up to 10 points to the score the computer gives you.       

GOOD LUCK AND HAVE FUN!!

Pacing: complete this by the end of Week 8 of your enrollment date for this class.