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The Beetle Project: Investigating insects in a warming world

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Overview:
This adaptable instructional module uses insects as a model system to illustrate the biological impacts of climate change, with the goal of engaging students with a range of hands-on and minds-on activities that increase their understanding of how science works, evolutionary processes, and the impacts of climate change.

Author/Source:
UC Museum of Paleontology

Grade level:
9-12

Time:
30 min to 10 class periods

Concepts:
Correspondence to the Next Generation Science Standards is indicated in parentheses after each relevant concept. See our conceptual framework for details.

  • Evolution results from selection acting upon genetic variation within a population. (LS4.B)

  • Inherited characteristics affect the likelihood of an organism's survival and reproduction. (LS4.B, LS4.C)

  • Natural selection acts on the variation that exists in a population. (LS4.B, LS4.C)

  • Natural selection acts on phenotype as an expression of genotype.

  • Over time, the proportion of individuals with advantageous characteristics may increase (and the proportion with disadvantageous characteristics may decrease) due to their likelihood of surviving and reproducing. (LS4.B, LS4.C)

  • A hallmark of science is exposing ideas to testing. (P3, P4, P6, P7)

  • Scientists use experimental evidence to study evolutionary processes.

  • As with other scientific disciplines, evolutionary biology has applications that factor into everyday life.

  • There is variation within a population. (LS3.B)

  • Natural selection is dependent on environmental conditions.

  • Environmental changes may provide opportunities that can influence natural selection. (LS4.B, LS4.C)

Teacher background:

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