external image 61089-004-FC7D69F2.jpg
Biome Bonanza! external image arctic-fox_1592.jpg
By Lucy Poro and Jennifer Michaels

Introduction:

Good day 6th grade explorers! Pack up your suitcases for you are about to embark on an adventure of a lifetime. For this assignment, you will travel to four different biomes as you learn about the environment and all of the unique features each holds in store. On your journey, you will record a brief overview of your surroundings for each biome. Then, you will provide a description of your favorite animal that you encounter in each biome. So, start packing and go out and see what the world has in store!
Tasks:
  1. Choose four different biomes that you want to research.
  2. Write a one-page journal for each biome including a description of its environment and one specific animal living in that biome.
  3. Create a presentation so your fellow explorers can see what you encountered during your travels.

Process:
Task 1:
  1. Go to World Biomes and browse all of the different biomes.
  2. Choose your four favorite biomes and record your findings for each biome. Your findings should include a description of the biome's climate, location, and native plants.
  3. Go to Blue Planet Biomes.
  4. Research your favorite animal that you find from each of the biomes you chose.
  5. Provide a description about the animal which should include the common name, genus, species, 7-10 interesting facts, and why it was your favorite.
  6. In Microsoft Word, create a journal for each biome including your findings about the biome, the animal, and your personal experience as you explored each biome.

Task 2:
  1. Complete a presentation about all of your research findings.
  2. Use Prezi to make a 3-5 minute presentation which includes your journey through all of the four biomes.
  3. For each biome, mention your findings about the environment first followed by your favorite animal for that particular biome.
  4. Include 3-5 pictures for each biome. This can include pictures of the environment and the animal that you chose.

Resources:

http://kids.nceas.ucsb.edu/biomes/index.html
http://www.blueplanetbiomes.org/animals.htm
http://prezi.com/

Illinois Learning Standards:

STATE GOAL 3: Write to communicate for a variety of purposes.

C. Communicate ideas in writing to accomplish a variety of purposes.
3.C.3b Using available technology, produce compositions and multimedia works for specified audiences.

STATE GOAL 5: Use the language arts to acquire, assess and communicate information.

C.Apply acquired information, concepts and ideas to communicate in a variety of formats.
5.C.3b Prepare and orally present original work (e.g., poems, monologues, reports, plays, stories) supported by research.

STATE GOAL 17: Understand world geography and the effects of geography on society, with an emphasis on the United States.

A. Locate, describe and explain places, regions and features on the Earth.
17.A.2a Compare the physical character­istics of places including soils, land forms, vegetation, wildlife, climate, natural hazards.

B. Analyze and explain characteristics and interactions of the Earth’s physical systems.
17.B.2b Explain how physical and living components interact in a variety of ecosystems including desert, prairie, flood plain, forest, tundra.


NETS-S

1. Creativity and Innovation
Students demonstrate creative thinking, construct knowledge, and develop innovative products and processes
using technology. Students:
b. create original works as a means of personal or group expression

2. Communication and Collaboration
Students use digital media and environments to communicate and work collaboratively, including at a distance,
to support individual learning and contribute to the learning of others. Students:
a. interact, collaborate, and publish with peers, experts, or others employing a variety of digital environments
and media
b. communicate information and ideas effectively to multiple audiences using a variety of media and forma

3. Research and Information Fluency
Students apply digital tools to gather, evaluate, and use information. Students:
b. locate, organize, analyze, evaluate, synthesize, and ethically use information from a variety of sources and
media
c. evaluate and select information sources and digital tools based on the appropriateness to specific tasks
d. process data and report results

5. Digital Citizenship
Students understand human, cultural, and societal issues related to technology and practice legal and ethical
behavior. Students:
a. advocate and practice safe, legal, and responsible use of information and technology
b. exhibit a positive attitude toward using technology that supports collaboration, learning, and productivity
c. demonstrate personal responsibility for lifelong learning
d. exhibit leadership for digital citizenship

6. Technology Operations and Concepts
Students demonstrate a sound understanding of technology concepts, systems, and operations. Students:
a. understand and use technology systems
b. select and use applications effectively and productively

Assessment:

Task #1: (Journal)

50
30
10
Description of Environment
Provides clear and thorough details about climate, location, and plants for each biome.
Provides some details about each biome; some descriptions have more details than others.
Provides inadequate details or the description is missing from some biomes. The three requirements of climate, location, and plants are not met.
Description of Animal
Exceeds required details. Gives in-depth explanation about each animal.
Provides some of the required information and has few additional facts.
Missing one or more animals and gives minimal details. Missing the majority of the required information.
Creativity
The style of writing is very informative with a personal spin on the journey. It meets page length requirement.
Some journals are a little less than a page. It meets most of the standard requirements while briefly describing the personal experience aspect.
Missing one or more journals; every journal is less than a page length and does not provide enough details about personal journey.
Total Task 1: __/50

Task #2: (Presentation)

50
30
10
Information
Gives an adequate account about many details of each biome's environment and its one animal.
Gives a fair account of each biome with some details regarding the environment and animal.
Gives an account of each biome with only a select few of details or with missing components.
Visual Appeal
Provides enough pictures, and the presentation is neat and well-organized.

Provides some pictures while appearing plain and scattered.
Provides very few pictures while appearing messy and effortless with missing information regarding the environment and/or animal.
Time
The presentation is within the designated time frame.
The presentation is either too short or too long.
The presentation is two minutes or less.
Total Task 2: _/50
Grand Total: _/100

Conclusion:

Welcome back explorers! Now you should have an understanding of four of the biomes of the world. Throughout your travels, you should have realized how each area contains varied locations, climates, plants, and animals. In order to survive in these areas, certain adaptations need to be maintained so that people, plants, and animals can live there. Each environment is unique, and the animals that live in each biome are well-adjusted to that particular environment. Hopefully this adventure will begin your lifelong journey of exploring the world because you never know what you might encounter!

*Attention explorers. Be sure to return from your trip in two weeks from today so you can share your experiences with the class. Please make sure to follow through with this assignment as it will be 25% of your grade! This assignment will self-destruct in two weeks....*

Works Cited:

Schaeffer, T. (Photographer). (2007). Arctic Fox [Photograph], Retrieved 22 February 2011, from: http://www.travel-destination-pictures.com/picture-of-an-arctic-fox-1592-pictures.htm
[Waterfall: Costa Rica]. [Photograph]. In Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved 22 February 2011, from: http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/media/51397/Waterfalls-cascade-through-the-lush-rainforest-of-the-Rara-Avis