About This Chapter
Below is a sample breakdown of the Ecosystems chapter into a 5-day school week. Based on the pace of your course, you may need to adapt the lesson plan to fit your needs.
|Day||Topics||Key Terms and Concepts Covered|
|Monday|| Environment and ecosystems|
Habitats and ecological niches
| Principles of ecology, organismal ecology, abiotic factors, population ecology, ecosystem ecology, biosphere ecology|
How animals live in their habitats, predator, niche, density-dependent factors, density-independent factors
|Tuesday|| Laws of thermodynamics|
|Kinetic energy, friction, first and second law of thermodynamics|
The scale of ecology, definition of global ecology, globalization, habitat destruction
Food chains, trophic levels and energy flow in an ecosystem
|Definition of biodiversity, species diversity, genetic diversity, ecological diversity|
Producers, consumers, trophic levels, food webs
|Thursday|| Biogeochemical cycle and the phosphorus cycle|
|How organisms use elements, macronutrients, trace elements, biogeochemical cycle, phosphorus cycle|
| How living organisms use carbon, cellular respiration, photosynthesis|
Definition of greenhouse gas, causes of global warming
1. The Environment, Levels of Ecology and Ecosystems
Do you know the difference between an environment and an ecosystem? In this lesson, you'll find out what makes an environment, and what makes an ecosystem. You'll also learn what ecology is and some of the ways that scientists study ecology using organisms, populations, communities, ecosystems and even the entire biosphere.
2. Ecosystems, Habitats and Ecological Niches
Check out this video lesson to understand the many complex aspects of an ecosystem. See how animals live in habitats and survive amongst their surroundings.
3. The Laws of Thermodynamics
Learn about the first and second laws of thermodynamics. Find out how energy is generated, how it converts from one form to another, and what happens to energy in a closed system.
4. Global Ecology: Definition and Overview
A large oil spill in the middle of the ocean and the release of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere are examples of environmental problems that can influence the entire planet. This lesson will explore the study of environmental problems occurring on a global scale, including the impact of globalization and current major global environmental problems.
5. What is Biodiversity? - Definition and Relation to Ecosystem Stability
Imagine making a list of all of the species you have ever heard of; it would be an enormous list! There are many different species on this planet. This lesson will explore the diversity of species, as well as the different types of diversity and how diversity of life is essential for maintaining healthy ecosystems.
6. Food Chains, Trophic Levels and Energy Flow in an Ecosystem
In this lesson, you'll learn about food chains, food webs, and the different roles that organisms play in an ecosystem. You'll also learn about how energy flows through an ecosystem.
7. Biogeochemical Cycling and the Phosphorus Cycle
In this video lesson, we'll take a look at how elements large and small use other elements to grow. This is achieved through cycles. We'll look at macronutrients, trace elements and the biogeochemical and phosphorous cycles.
8. The Nitrogen Cycle, Acid Rain and Fossil Fuels
Do you know the difference between nitrite and nitrate? Do you have any clue how all the nitrogen in the atmosphere becomes usable? If you can't answer these questions, then you need to watch this lesson on the nitrogen cycle.
9. The Carbon Cycle and Long-Term Carbon Storage
All living organisms have a role in the carbon cycle. Do you know you understand how humans, animals and plants use carbon? This lesson will introduce you to the carbon cycle and explain how it functions on a global scale.
10. Fossil Fuels, Greenhouse Gases, and Global Warming
In this video lesson, you'll learn what roles fossil fuels and greenhouse gases play in global warming, as well as what life on Earth can expect due to rising carbon dioxide levels within Earth's atmosphere.
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