What Secrets are Hiding in My School Yard?
Author: Jere A. Boudell
Discipline: Life Sciences
Grade Level: 4-8
Print Entire Lesson
Soils of many different ecosystems often contain viable seeds (seeds that are capable of germinating), often referred to as a seed bank. While we think of the vegetation that we can see as the only vegetation that exists in a location, seeds of different species are often present in the soil. Frequently, buried seeds will germinate when conditions are “right” (appropriate temperatures, enough water, etc.), however, sometimes the soil must also be disturbed in order for the seeds to germinate. In this activity, students will collect soil samples from their schoolyard, allow the seeds to germinate, and identify species that emerge from the sample soil. Students will learn that seeds can be “dormant”, waiting for appropriate conditions in which to germinate. Students will also learn that other species may be present in an ecosystem, “hiding” in the soil.
Keywords: Soil, Seed Bank, Germination, Environmental Conditions.
Life Science: Content Standrad C
Reproduction and Heredity
Populations and Ecosystems
Arizona State Standards:
Strand 1: Inquiry Process
PO 1 - Differentiate among a question, hypothesis and prediction.
PO 2 - Formulate questions based on observations that lead to development of a hypothesis.
Concept 2: Scientific Testing (Investigating and Modeling)
Design and conduct controlled investigations.
PO 1, PO 2, PO 3, PO 4, PO 5.
Concept 3: Analysis and Conclustions (Grades 6,7,8)
Analyze and interpret data to explain correlations and results; formulate new questions
PO 1, PO 2, PO 3, PO 4, PO 5, PO 6.
Concept 4: Communication (Grades 6,7,8)
Communicate results of investigation
PO 1, PO 2, PO 3, PO 5.
Strand 2: History and Nature of Science
Concept 2: Nature of Scientific Knowledge
Understand how science is a process for generating knowledge
PO 1, PO 2 (Grade 5) ; PO 3, PO 4 (grades 5,8).
Strand 3: Science in Personal and Social Perspectives
Concept 1: Changes in Environments (Grades 4,7)
Describe the interactions between human populations, natural hazards, and the environments.
Strand 4: Life Science
Concept 3: Populations of Organisms in an Ecosystem - analyze the relationships among various organisms and their environments.
PO 1, PO 3 (Grades 4,6)
PO 2 (Grades 6)
PO 2, PO 4(Grades 7)
|Lesson Plans (pdf / doc)|
|Example Data Sheet (pdf / doc)|
|Report Evaluation (pdf /doc)|
References and Related Links: