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Lesson Plan ONE

Subject: Unit: Topic: Core Learning Goals:

Ecology Ecosystem: Making of TerraAqua Column 3.5.1 The student will analyze the relationships between biotic diversity and abiotic factors in environments and the resulting influence on ecosystems. 3.5.2 The student will analyze the interrelationships ad interdependences among different organisms and explain how these relationships contribute to the stability of the ecosystem.


Students will be able to: 1. Identify biotic and abiotic factors in the ecosystem by creating a TerraAqua column and; 2. Investigate the effects of acid when introduced to the TerraAqua Ecosystem
LCD projector, laptop (to be used by the students), worksheet, materials needed for the TerraAqua Column Activity, pH probes, chart, marker, vinegar Pictures of different factors affecting the ecosystem will be posted on one part of the board. Teacher will call students to choose and pick one factor. Based on their prior knowledge, they will group it as either abiotic or biotic factor. Accommodations: Use of Highlighter; Extra Response Time; Repetition of Directions; and Use of Large Text (as needed) Through a simple game, based on the students prior knowledge, students will be divided into two groups and they will be given 3-5minutes to discuss the differences between a terrestrial and aquatic ecosystem and give examples of the organisms found in each ecosystem. They will also formulate a hypothesis if foreign materials like acid, oils spills and other chemicals are introduced into either the aquatic or terrestrial ecosystem. The group who will come up with the most correct answers will be the winner. Accommodations: Extended Time; Extra Response Time; Repetition of Directions

Materials: Drill:


Direct Instruction:

Brief discussion of the differences between terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems emphasizing on their components. Teacher will introduce and explain the procedure on TerraAqua Making by watching a vodcast. Accommodations: Prompting When Students are Reciting; Modifications of Questions; Replay Video if Necessary;

Guided Practice:

Teacher will ask the students if they have questions/clarifications. Students will be provided with the materials needed for the activity. Teacher will assist the students as they go about the assigned task.

Accommodations: Extra Response Time, Repetition of Direction; Partner with a More Proficient Student
Independent Practice: Assessment: Completion of Activities Accommodations: Extra Time; Repetition of Directions; Partner with a More Proficient Student After the Hands-On TerraAqua Activity, the class will discuss the possible effects of introduction of foreign and hazardous materials to the ecosystem and the role of Homeland Security to protect the safety of the components of the ecosystem like water, soil and the living organisms. For 10 days, students will observe the effect of acid on the TerraAqua Column that they will make. They will use a pH probe to gather data. They will use excel to graph their data. Accommodations: Extra Time; Modification of Questions; Less items Research five environmental laws. Accommodations: Extra Time and Less Items Closure/Summar y:


Exit Slip Questions: In 5 sentences, relate the following terms: Ecosystem, Public Safety and DHS. EPA

Prepared By: Maida Cielo-Polo and Anna Bella Sy

Bottle Biology TerraAqua Column Making Introduction: Biologists have observed that living organisms in Lake Montebello are dying and
the surrounding plants are withering. A few months ago, there was an acid spill in the land area and runoffs may have contaminated the lake as well. The students would like to determine if acid has an effect on both ecosystem. To investigate this, they will create their own TerraAqua ecosystem and introduce acid to it. Amount and concentration of acid solution (vinegar) that will be added to the ecosystem will be constant as well as the type of soil, water, and plants to be used, age of plants, and salt treatment schedule. Physical conditions such as temperature and light will also be kept constant.

Problem/Question: How does acid affect the living components of the TerraAqua Column? Hypothesis: ___________________________________________________ ____________________________________________________________ Materials: For Building:

3 2-liter plastic bottles (bottle 1 provides a deep base and top, bottle 2 provides a deep funnel.) 2 bottle caps (for top and deep funnel) 1 20-cm length of nylon craft cord (for wick) China or non-permanent marker (for making marks) Safety razor or utility knife (for starting bottle cuts) Scissors (for finishing bottle cuts) Soldering iron or drill (for making wick hole in bottle cap) Push pin (for making air holes) Fine grained aquarium gravel (provides bedrock) Sand or topsoil (provides bottom sediment) Untreated tap water or distilled water (provides aquatic habitat) Boulders, sunken logs, and other miniature objects typical of a pond bottom Aquatic plants and animals Fish food (if you include a fish)

Materials needed for Aquatic Ecosystem:

Fine grained aquarium gravel (provides bedrock) Topsoil (provides soil substrate) Leaf litter (provides decaying material) Terrestrial plants and animals Boulders, dead trees, and other miniature objects typical of a forest habitat Food for animals as needed

Materials needed for Aquatic Ecosystem:


Step 1 Remove label from the 2-liter bottle. On bottle #1, cut 2 cm below shoulder to produce component "A," a shallow funnel top and "C" a deep reservoir.

Step 2 Poke or drill a 1 cm hole in bottle cap.

Step 3 Cut Bottle #2, 1 cm below hip to produce component "B" a deep funnel unit with hip taper.

Step 4 Fill reservoir with water. Add soil and plants to top chamber. To be effective, the wick should run up into soil, not be plastered along a side of the bottle. For better drainage, place a layer of gravel, sand or vermiculite in the bottom of the soil unit.

Step 5-

1. Using a dropper, treat one TerraAqua Column with 5ml of acid solution and the

CONTROL with 5ml plain water. Test the water and soil pH using the pH probe.Record measurement in table 1.

2. Observe and record plant/fish development and take pictures of the plants/fish to

monitor changes in color and other aspects of physical appearance. Record observations in table 2.

DATA: Table 1: Quantitative Observation


Amount of Acid (5ml)

pH Aquatic Terrestria Ecosyste l m Ecosystem

Water (Control) Aquatic Terrestria Ecosystem l Ecosystem

1 3 5 7 9 11 13 15 17 19

5ml 5ml 5ml 5ml 5ml 5ml 5ml 5ml 5ml 5ml

Table 2: Qualitative Observation

Day Aquatic Ecosyste m

1 3 5 7 9

pH Terrestria l Ecosystem

Water (Control) Aquatic Ecosyste m Terrestria l Ecosystem

11 13 15 17 19
Discuss your experience within your group and in class. Write a report and create a graph to illustrate your investigation.


1. What are the three basic components that make up the TerraAqua Column?

2. Why is the amount of acid solution kept constant?

3. List other variables that are constant in the experiment. Explain why.

4. Do the results of your experiment support your hypothesis?

5. DHS (EPA) monitors and controls the safety and security of land and water. How prepared do you think are they in case of accident or intentional sabotage of water and land area of the United States?


Explain the global impact and health risk of this emergency scenario.

7. If you are working as part of the EPA Team or DHS Team in general, how will you contribute in solving the problem?