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Evolution: Convergence, Divergence & Adaptation Lessons Developed to Teach Evolution & Ecology to Middle & High School Students Kathy Daniels Indiana University.

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Presentation on theme: "Evolution: Convergence, Divergence & Adaptation Lessons Developed to Teach Evolution & Ecology to Middle & High School Students Kathy Daniels Indiana University."— Presentation transcript:

1 Evolution: Convergence, Divergence & Adaptation Lessons Developed to Teach Evolution & Ecology to Middle & High School Students Kathy Daniels Indiana University REU/RET Program 2007 Mentor Dr. Emilia Martins

2 Original Idea – Update the Vivarium The vivarium in Jordan Hall houses reptiles from around the world. For several years the only information was on 2 small signs about 1 animal on each side of the exhibit. It needed updating.

3 Evolved Idea – Plan an educational experience around the vivarium As I looked around Jordan Hall, as a teacher, I saw potential in all the resources located in just this building. Vivarium Specimen Collection Bird Paintings Greenhouse Prairie Plantings

4 Goals To teach the evolutionary concepts of convergence, divergence and adaptation To provide a venue for teacher outreach To raise awareness in middle & high school students of resources & programs at IU To provide teachers an inexpensive and innovative way to teach evolution To align project objectives to the Indiana State Science Standards

5 Description 12 lessons and activities designed Pre-visit lessons prepare students for a visit to the exhibit areas in Jordan Hall On-site activities created for completion at Jordan Hall using the exhibits Post-visit lessons designed for reviewing & extending the concepts learned by visiting Jordan Hall.

6 Components SignsSigns were developed for the vivarium. –The signs concentrated on the topic of convergent evolution. –“Old world” and “New World” terminology is also explained through the signs on the vivarium. –Viewers are encouraged to compare the animals and plants on each side of the vivarium to observe evidence of convergence. –Questions on the signs are designed to pique the interest of anyone who stops to observe the vivarium.

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8 Components activities and lessonsA collection of 12 activities and lessons were developed around three concepts in evolution. In order to create a complete learning cycle, the pre-visit activities, on-site activities, and post-visit activities are all aligned to the three concepts of convergence, divergence, and adaptation.

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10 Components websiteA website was developed & includes –All educational materials –Links –Background information –Teacher tips –Contacts

11 Internet Resources or

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13 Jim Holland Summer Enrichment Program Pilot

14 Future Plans One of the unmet goals this summer was to develop an ongoing relationship with Wonderlab museum. A relationship has begun to form, and potential project ideas have been shared between the Martins Lab and Wonderlab. It was interesting that in the evaluation of the pilot program the same ideas were expressed by the students as something that would make the field trip experience more meaningful. –Develop an interactive demonstrations –Obtain/Train docents to lead the activities in each exhibit area

15 Current Plans Migrate website to IU’s server in the biology department Promote the website and free field trip opportunity to high school teachers in Southern Indiana Present field trip project at HASTI conference in February Pursue funding opportunities for next summer to complete this summer’s unmet goal

16 THANK YOU! I would like to express my gratitude to –IU for having the REU, and now RET program –Dr. Emilia Martins for letting me run with the idea for the field trip experience, and providing the support and guidance when I needed it! –Linda Summers for taking care of the endless details –The Jim Holland SEP program for providing me with adolescent human guinea pigs

17 Additional Information The Indiana State Science Standards may be found at This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant No Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.


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