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Population community ecosystem biosphere

Content objective:

What are we learning? Why are we learning this?

content, procedures, skills

Vocabulary objective

Tier II: High frequency words used across content areas. Key to understanding directions, understanding relationships, and for making inferences.

Tier III: Low frequency, domain specific terms

Building on what we already know

What vocabulary & concepts were learned in earlier grades?
Make connections to prior lessons from this year.
This is where we start building from.

How is life organized?

From the smallest to the largest scale.

The amazing cell and DNA size and scale app!

Cells – how big? from a hair down to a virus

Interactive scale of the Universe (No, really, the entire known scale!)

Numbersleuth magnifying the Universe

Powers of 10: Molecular Expressions from FSU

If the moon were only 1 pixel: A tediously accurate scale model of the solar system 😉

Nikon Universcale

Powers of Ten™ (1977) by Charles and Ray Eames

Pretty amazing, right? 🙂



All stable matter in the universe is made of basic elements.

* Atoms are extremely small.
* radius o= 1 x 10 -9 meters = 0.000000001 meters.
* One billion atoms, lined up next to each other fit, in a single meter.
* Consider a sheet of aluminum foil – it’s more than 100,000 atoms thick!
* All solids, liquids and gases are made of atoms.


Atoms tightly bonded together form molecules.

1. Water (H2O), Carbon dioxide (CO2) and Glucose (C6H12O6) are small molecules

2. Proteins, nucleic acids, fats and carbohydrates are large molecules
atom molecule compound mixture



are tiny biological machines, found inside cells.

1. Made from many organic molecules working together.

2. Each organelle has its own job. Examples include the nucleus, ribosome, mitochondria, Golgi, etc.


are the basic unit of life. Made of many organelles working together, inside a lipid (fatty) membrane.

1. A cell is the smallest unit that can truly be called living.


are made of many cells of the same kind working together.

1. Skin tissue is made from epithelial cells 2. The brain is made from nerve cells

3. Muscles are made from muscle cells 4. The heart is made from cardiac muscle cells


A group of tissues that perform a specific function

1 Examples: brain, heart, kidneys, lungs, eyes
Physiology Art Deco


An individual living being.

The tiniest organisms are a single cell, such as a bacteria.

Most organisms are made of millions of cells working together.

Examples of organisms: People, Gorillas, Ants, Monarch butterflies, Oak trees, Roses, etc.


is a group of organisms (of the same species) that live together.

1. The human population of New York; the hawk population of the Bronx, the Oak Tree population of Central Park.

2. Most populations are adapted to live in a specific habitat, such as a field, forest, stream, ocean, desert or tundras.
Population dispersion of fish penguins plants


All the populations of different organisms (different species) that live together.

1. A pond community may be composed of frogs, several species of fish, algae, several species of bacteria, several species of plants,
a few species of trees, a few species of bird, and several species of insects.


both the community and the physical environment in which the community lives.

All living things eventually die. Bacteria and fungi break down dead organisms, into basic chemicals. These chemicals become
part of the soil, or dust in the air.

Later, some of these molecules will be taken up by the roots of plants. Herbivores will eat these plants. Carnivores then eat these
animals. Eventually, all animals die, and the cycle repeats itself.


A biome is a large area on Earth defined by (a) average temperature, over the course of a year, (b) average rainfall, over the course of a year, and (c) the types of animals and plants living there.

For a detailed look at many biomes click here.

For example, here is a temperate woodland biome.

Temperate woodland and shrubland biome

Biomes across the United States

biomes across America

All of the biomes across the earth, together make up the biosphere.

The biosphere covers our entire planet: Atmosphere, soil, and oceans.


all in one ecosystem from atom to biosphere

Learning Standards

Massachusetts Science and Technology/Engineering Curriculum Framework

Describe the hierarchical organization of multicellular organisms from cells to tissues to organs to systems to organisms

Give examples of ways in which organisms interact and have different functions within an ecosystem that enable the ecosystem to survive.

High School Biology: 4. Anatomy and Physiology
Central Concepts: There is a relationship between the organization of cells into tissues and the organization of tissues into organs. The structures and functions of organs determine their relationships within body systems of an organism

A Framework for K-12 Science Education

Scale, proportion, and quantity. In considering phenomena, it is critical to recognize what is relevant at different measures of size, time, and energy and to recognize how changes in scale, proportion, or quantity affect a system’s structure or performance….

The understanding of relative magnitude is only a starting point. As noted in Benchmarks for Science Literacy, “The large idea is that the way in which things work may change with scale. Different aspects of nature change at different rates with changes in scale, and so the relationships among them change, too” [4]. Appropriate understanding of scale relationships is critical as well to engineering—no structure could be conceived, much less constructed, without the engineer’s precise sense of scale.

  • Dimension 2, Crosscutting Concepts, A Framework for K-12 Science Education: Practices, Crosscutting Concepts, and Core Ideas (2012)


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