Explore the research question, "Does an invasive species impact biodiversity in my area?" with this full unit of study. Through this investigation, your students will develop understandings around interdependent relationships in ecosystems, skills in analyzing and interpreting data, and confidence in conducting authentic scientific research.They will explore the impact that invasive species have on biodiversity in local habitats while they collect and interpret real data and communicate their findings with a community of scientists.
Students will practice using data to answer statistical questions using the online interactive, Tuva. Students will create graphs and then use their graphs to draw meaning from the data. Tuva hosts a variety of datasets with accompanying questions that students may explore on their own or with extra class time.
Goals for this anytime anywhere module:
1. Understand why working with data is important and a key part of doing science and an opportunity to bridge the math and science disciplines.
Explore the the research question, "Does an invasive species impact biodiversity?" with the Invasive Species & Biodiversity Vital Signs Data Investigation Curriculum Extension. This extension assumes that you have experience implementing Vital Signs in your classroom and have developed a unit plan around an investigation or use one like the Change Over Time Unit: http://vitalsignsme.org/10-day-curriculum-population-change-over-time.
This is a datasheet from Ruth Indrick, a project coordinator with the Kennebec Estuary Land Trust (KELT) that they use for Green Crab Mark Recapture studies. Vital Signs partnered with KELT for an event at the Maine Land Trust Network (MLTN) Conservation Conference in 2015, and demonstrated tools and techniques for engaging schools and community members in invasive species monitoring. Use this datasheet out in the field and use the contained equations for estimating crab populations.
Posted with the permission of the Maine Data Literacy Project team.
This resources is awesome! You and your students can use this tool to help decide how to analyze and visualize your data to help answer your question. Check it out and find more resources on the Maine Data Literacy Project website http://participatoryscience.org/project/maine-data-literacy-project.
Vital Signs Kick-Start for Returning Students
Has it been a few months (or a year) since your students have taken part in a Vital Signs investigation? Do you have a few new students that missed your initial investigation? One way to ease everyone back into Vital Signs and shine the spotlight on quality data observations is to use the Data Quality Hunt (make this a link) resource provided by the Vital Signs team.
There are many ways to use this resource in your classroom - below is an explanation for how I used it this past year with my 7th and 8th grade students.
I use this worksheet with students before they begin entering data onto Vital Signs. This gives the students time to talk to each other, edit their work with other groups and make sure they have everything organized before they begin working on their computers. I have students pull their pictures up on their laptop screen to view but they do all of their writing on this worksheet.
- Where is my school? Where is my house? I know they're down here somewhere! Dana shows you how he uses clues on the Vital Signs map to find the places in Maine he cares most about. Next step, using the Vital Signs data! To be continued....
Download the Guide below under "Documents"
- See how Wesley and Josephine use the VS export table and Excel to create a simple bar graph using species data and biodiversity counts. This analysis lets them compare the biodiversity counts where invasive species were found with the biodiversity counts where invasive species were not found. Is biodiversity different where invasive species are found? So nerdy.