Biology Unit Overview and Pacing Guide

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1 This document provides teachers with an overview of each unit in the Biology curriculum. The Curriculum Engine provides additional information including knowledge and performance learning targets, key terms, essential questions, instructional resources, and teaching suggestions. Unit 1 Topic: Ecosystem Dynamics and Interactions (8 weeks) To demonstrate an understanding of the complex interactions within ecosystems using mathematical representations and argumentation. [HS-LS2-1, HS-LS2-2, HS-LS2-6] To identify the impacts of human activity on the environment and to engineer solutions mitigating any adverse effects.[hs-ls2-7, HS-LS4-6, HS-ETS1-1, HS-ETS1-2, HS-ETS1-3, HS-ETS1-4] Crosscutting Concepts: Cause and Effect; Scale, Proportion, and Quantity; and Stability and Change Part 1: What factors influence population growth? How is biodiversity used as a measure for the health of an ecosystem? [HS-LS2-2] [HS-LS2-1] (3 Weeks) Describe the role resource availability has on population growth Provide examples of biotic and abiotic factors that limit population growth Use models and interpret data to explain and predict changes in population size over time Incorporate the significance of scale when discussing factors which impact population Expand the definition of biodiversity to include the population size of each species, the genetic variation within each species, and ecological diversity Describe how changes in an ecosystem may affect biodiversity and characteristics of populations Recognize that ecosystems can exist in the same location on a variety of scales Explain how factors affect biodiversity at different scales using mathematical representations Part 2: What happens to ecosystems when the environment changes? [HS-LS2-6] (2 Weeks) Use evidence to explain why ecosystems tend to be stable as a result of complex interactions Compare the impact of moderate and extreme fluctuations on ecosystems Relate the resilience of an ecosystem to the biodiversity of the populations living there Part 3: How do we engineer solutions to reduce human impact on the environment? [HS-LS2-7, HS-LS4-6, HS-ETS1-1, HS-ETS1-2, HS-ETS1-3, HS-ETS1-4] (3 Weeks) Explain how human activity may result in conditions that affect the environment and biodiversity Provide examples how human activity has accelerated the rate of extinction and has led to the loss of genetic variation of organisms Apply the design process to evaluate solutions related to human activities that disrupt ecosystems, impact biodiversity, and threaten the survival of species Propose and refine a solution that decreases the negative effects human activities have on the environment while giving consideration to criteria, constraints, and tradeoffs Design or use a simulation to model the effectiveness of solutions related to the loss of biodiversity K 12 Science Page 1 of 5

2 Unit 2 Topic: Matter and Energy in Ecosystems (7 weeks) Course Goal: To develop models and use mathematical representations illustrating how matter and energy are cycled within an ecosystem through the processes of photosynthesis and respiration. [HS- LS1-5, HS-LS1-6, HS-LS1-7, HS-LS2-3, HS-LS2-4, HS-LS2-5] Crosscutting Concepts: Systems and System Models, Energy and Matter Part 1: Did you know you are solar powered? What are the building blocks of life? What elements am I made of? [HS-LS1-5] [HS-LS1-6] (2 Weeks) Describe the process of photosynthesis a series a complex chemical reactions that convert light energy into stored chemical energy Model the chemical equation to show the inputs and outputs of photosynthesis Explain how and why glucose is stored as cellulose or starch in a plant Predict how environmental factors can affect the rate of photosynthesis Provide evidence that organisms are composed of compounds containing common elements Explain the hydrocarbon backbones of sugars molecules produced during photosynthesis are used to create the macromolecules found in organisms Use models and simulations to explain how chemical elements are recombined in different ways to form different products Part 2: What process powers life? What happens to the food I eat? [HS-LS1-7, HS-LS2-3] (2 Weeks) Reinforce the idea that the energy stored in food molecules originally came from radiant energy Explain energy cannot be created or destroyed during biological processes Know enzymes are required for chemical reactions to occur in living systems Describe the process of cellular respiration as a chemical reaction where the bonds of sugar are broken down in the presence of oxygen to release energy and yield carbon dioxide and water Compare aerobic and anaerobic respiration in terms of the organisms that use the processes, site of the reactions, and energy output (ATP formation) Model the cyclical relationship of photosynthesis and respiration Part 3: What s the matter? Where s the energy? [HS-LS2-4, HS-LS2-5] (3 Weeks) Apply the conservation of matter and energy to food webs and trophic levels Explain only a fraction of matter consumed at lower trophic levels is transferred to higher trophic levels to produce growth and release energy through cellular respiration Describe how most energy is not transferred to higher trophic levels because it is used for growth, maintenance, repair, or lost as heat to the environment Establish a cause and effect relationship between the inefficiency in energy at each trophic level which results in less organisms occupying the higher trophic levels Emphasize how atoms of carbon, oxygen, hydrogen, and nitrogen are conserved to make new molecules as they move through the ecosystem Use diagrams and simulations to model the movement of carbon through the biosphere, atmosphere, hydrosphere, and geosphere K 12 Science Page 2 of 5

3 Unit 3 Topic: DNA and Heredity (7 weeks) To demonstrate an understanding of how DNA determines the essential functions of proteins and codes for traits that are passed onto offspring. [HS-LS1-1, HS-LS3-1] To use a model to illustrate the roles of cellular division and differentiation in the growth and development of organisms. [HS-LS1-4] To describe multiple sources of genetic variation and apply statistical methods to explain patterns of expressed traits in populations. [HS-LS3-2, HS-LS3-3] Crosscutting Concepts: Structure and Function; Cause and Effect; Scale, Proportion, and Quantity; Systems and System Models Part 1: How does DNA control your life? [HS-LS1-1, HS-LS3-1] (2 Weeks) Explain the structure and function of DNA Describe the process of DNA replication and why it is necessary Describe the process of protein synthesis and relate the nucleotide sequence in DNA to the proper structure and function of proteins Explain the relationship between the regulation of DNA expression and the resulting traits observed in organisms Ask questions to show an understanding that non-coding sections of DNA exist and are not completely understood Part 2: How do complex organisms arise from a single cell? Is DNA really your destiny? [HS-LS1-4, HS- LS3-2] (2 Weeks) Define a multicellular organism as a collection of differentiated cells that contain the same DNA and arose from a single fertilized egg Explain the differences between cell types in a multicellular organism are due to gene expression, not different genetic material in the organism Use models to explain the process and outcome of mitosis Describe how mitosis is a mechanism that allows organisms to grow, develop, repair damaged tissue, and reproduce asexually (if applicable) Explain mutations can be naturally occurring or caused by environmental factors and have varying effects on gene expressions Compare the outcomes of mitosis and meiosis Develop an argument and provide evidence genetic variation results from the process of meiosis, errors during DNA replication, or mutations caused by environmental factors Part 3: Why do members of a family look differently? [HS-LS3-3] (3 Weeks) Use Punnett Squares as a tool to determine the probability of genotypes and expressed traits in a population Interpret data to determine the frequency, distribution, and variation of expressed traits in a population. Use data to identify patterns and explain the distribution of an expressed trait when environmental variables change. K 12 Science Page 3 of 5

4 Unit 4 Topic: Evolution and Natural Selection (7 weeks) To construct an explanation of how multiple lines of scientific evidence support common ancestry and the role of natural selection in biological evolution. [HS-LS4-1, HS-LS4-2, HS-LS4-4] To evaluate how natural selection and environmental conditions cause the numerical distribution of traits in a population to change over time and may result in the emergence and/or extinction of species. [HS-LS4-3, HS-LS4-5] To use evidence to evaluate how group behavior influences the survival and reproductive success of individuals and species. [HS-LS2-8] Crosscutting Concepts: Patterns, Cause and Effect Part 1: How do we explain the tree of life? Are the fit the survivors? How does the environment cause evolutionary change? [HS-LS4-1, HS-LS4-2, HS-LS4-4] (3 Weeks) Explain that organisms change over time through biological evolution Use multiple sources of evidence such as DNA sequences, fossils, protein similarities, embryological patterns, vestigial organs, comparative anatomy, and species distributions to construct an argument that supports common ancestry Interpret diagrams to infer evolutionary relationships Differentiate between the theory of evolution and the process of natural selection Explain that evolution by natural selection occurs when a species grows in numbers, there is competition for limited resources, genetic variation is present, and individuals with favorable adaptations have a competitive edge to survive and reproduce Describe how abiotic and biotic factors in an environment contribute to changes in gene frequencies and adaptations over time Identify a cause and effect relationship between natural selection and adaptation Part 2: How do organisms adapt to their environment? Why do some organisms go extinct while others survive? Are humans the driver of the sixth mass extinction? [HS-LS4-3, HS-LS4-5] (3 Weeks) Identify adaptations as structural, physiological, or behavioral traits which increase chances of survival and reproductive success Explain individuals within a population who survive and reproduce at a higher rate are more likely to pass along their genetic information to individuals in the next generation Organize data using tables and graphs to show the numerical distribution of traits in populations over time Explain that changes to environmental conditions impact populations of species and can lead to the expansion of some species, the emergence of a new species, and the decline or extinction of some species Part 3: What are the benefits of being social? Why do birds of a feather flock together? (1 Week) Compare the survival rate of individuals of the same species interacting as a group versus living outside of the group. Develop an argument related to how group behavior can increase the chances for an individual and a species to survive and reproduce. K 12 Science Page 4 of 5

5 Unit 5 Topic: Homeostasis and Interacting Systems (4 weeks) Course Goal: To develop an understanding of how the hierarchical organization of interacting systems perform specific functions which maintain homeostasis through feedback mechanisms. [HS-LS1-2, HS-LS1-3] Crosscutting Concepts: System and System Models, Stability and Change Part 1: Is there a body system I can live without? How does the body function as a system? [HS-LS1-2] (2 Weeks) Identify how the organs and organ systems function within a complex multicellular organism Model at least two body systems in terms of their contributions to the overall function of the organism and the ways the two organ systems affect one another. Explain how adequate interactions between different systems within an organism are necessary to maintain homeostasis Describe how the structure and function of the cell membrane contributes to cellular homeostasis Part 2: How do organisms respond to environmental conditions? How does negativity make me positive? [HS-LS1-3] (2 Weeks) Describe how negative and positive feedback mechanisms maintain homeostasis Explain how stimuli from the external environment affects the overall homeostatic balance within an organism Plan and conduct an experiment to demonstrate the effect of changes in the external environment on an organism s ability to maintain homeostasis K 12 Science Page 5 of 5

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