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Science - 5th Grade
Standard 5 Objective 1
Science - 5th Grade
Standard 5 Objective 2
Through hands-on investigation and observations students will learn that the behaviors of off-spring are inherited from the parent organism.
Caring for Mealworms
During the investigation, keep the mealworms in the container in which you purchased them. Feed the mealworms bran cereal and/or oatmeal. For moisture, place a small piece of apple or potato in the container (frequently check the apple or potato to make sure it is not too dry or getting moldy).
Since some investigations need hungry mealworms, have a separate container that has no food source available.
Mealworms need to be kept in a warm, but not hot, area. Do not place their container in direct sunlight. Mealworms move slowly when the temperature is below 58º F. They will mature at a faster rate if they are kept in a warm area at 75-85 ºF.
See Building a Mealworm Habitat, for more details.
To be effective, this set of activities needs to be conducted over a time period of several days. The following is a suggested time schedule:
Conduct the Invitation to Learn activity.
Read the Background Information on each organism. Students should gain an understanding of each organism 's normal environment and how their physical characteristics provide a survival advantage. Have students also list behaviors that would be instinctual for each organism. Place damp paper towels in the freezer (see Temperature Stimulus below)) for Day 3 investigations.
Conduct the investigations of how each organism responds to black and white
surfaces, light, touch, barriers, moisture and temperature.
Place the mealworms and earthworms in containers without food for 24 hours so they are hungry.
Conduct the investigations of how each organism responds to food. Discuss inherited versus learned behaviors. If you are not going to watch the mealworms complete their metamorphoses, compare and contrast mealworm larvae, pupae and adults.
A Two-Week Period
Build a mealworm habitat and watch the mealworms complete their metamorphoses into darkling beetles.
Mealworms can be purchased at your local pet store. They are inexpensive and most are sold in amounts of 50,100 or 200.The large mealworms cost more, but are more lively and easier for students to observe. The large mealworms are often treated with hormones so they will NOT become adult beetles. The small mealworms will change into adult beetles within a month or two. Mealworms are also available from Carolina Science and Math at 1-800-334-5551 or http://www.carolina.com.Larvae =$5.95 for a pack of 50,paper catalog #BA-14-4272, online catalog #WW-14-4272; Larvae =$8.50 for a pack of 100,paper catalog #BA-14-4274, online catalog #WW-14-4274.They can also be purchased from Nasco (http://www.enasco.com/prod/Home) and Berkshire Biological Supply Company (http://stores.mgfx.com/bb/).
An assortment of adults, larvae and pupae can be purchased from Carolina Science and Math for $9.00.Paper catalog #BA-14-4264, online catalog #WW-14-4264.
Earthworms, or night crawlers, can be purchased cheaply and easily at your local fishing tackle shop. They are sold by the dozen. They can also be purchased from Carolina Science and Math.
The Honey Files, A Bee 's Life, A Teaching Guide and video. Available from
the National Honey Board, 390 Lashley Street, Longmont, CO, 80501-6045,or
http://www.honey.com/kids/video/index.html.This shows the life stages of bees and their survival behaviors.
Honey Bee Study Prints, twelve over-sized pictures of the life cycle of honeybees. Available from Dadant &Sons, 2765 S. Golden State Blvd., P.O. Box 2837,Fresno, CA, 93745,or toll free:(877) 432-3268. $24.50 plus shipping/handling and tax.
Utah Agriculture in the Classroom. Visit their website for great lessons on insects and creating insect habitats in the classroom (http://www.agclassroom.org/ut).
Sometimes offspring do not look like the parent organism at first; but as the offspring go through their life cycles they begin to look more like their parent(s). A life cycle is the stages a living organism goes through during its lifetime. Many insects go through dramatic changes from eggs to adults. The process is called metamorphosis.
Every organism responds to its environment, which is the surroundings in which the organism lives. Some behaviors (the way in which an organism acts) are "built-in " because they are inherited from the parent organism. These behaviors are called inherited or instinctual. Other behaviors are not inherited, but can be learned.
1-Use science process and thinking skills.
2-Manifest scientific attitudes and interests.
3-Understand science concepts and principles.
4-Communicate effectively using science language and reasoning.
6-Understand the Nature of Science.
Invitation to Learn:
Engage students in the following investigations with mealworms and earthworms. Have them record their observations, questions and conclusions in their science journals.
Black and white surface stimulus
Light and touch stimulus
Comparing Mealworm Life Cycle Stages
Do one of the following:
Training a mealworm
These investigations were adapted from the Animal Behavior Teacher Guide, which provides information about additional explorations. Delta Education, catalog #38-438-4203, $32.95. 1-800-442-5444,http://www.delta-education.com.
This lesson is part of the Fifth Grade Science Teacher Resource Book (TRB3) http://www.usoe.org/curr/science/core/5th/TRB5/. The TRB3 is designed to be your textbook in teaching science curriculum to your students. This book covers all the objectives of each standard and benchmark. If taught efficiently, a student should do well on the End-of-Level (CRT) tests. The TRB3 is designed for teachers who know very little about science, as well as for teachers who have a broad understanding of science.