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Main Curriculum Tie:
Background For Teachers:
This lesson helps students understand specialized structure and variation. These terms are very similar in that specialized structures often vary across a species to accommodate different environments. This can be confusing to students. Use this lesson to solidify these two terms and their differences.
Discuss how specialized structures and variations help species survive in their environments. Point out the obvious creatures such as lions, cheetahs, giraffes, bears, and others that have obvious specialized structures. Write the names of two similar species on the board and have groups analyze them using Venn Diagrams for specialized structures. Then analyze the specialized structures based on variations from environment to environment.
To follow up, discuss humans and how we have many specialized structures that aren’t so glamorous or exciting, but help us survive just the same. Using cooperative learning groups, students investigate specialized structures that humans have and tell how they help us survive in our environment. Each group presents what they think is the most important specialized structure on their list.
As a conclusion, discuss each of the specialized structures and decide if they might have variations in different species of animals.
Intended Learning Outcomes:
Invitation to Learn
Strategies For Diverse Learners:
ESL and Special Needs Learners
Gifted and Talented
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