SC.912.E.7.3

Differentiate and describe the various interactions among Earth systems, including: atmosphere, hydrosphere, cryosphere, geosphere, and biosphere.
General Information
Subject Area: Science
Grade: 912
Body of Knowledge: Earth and Space Science
Idea: Level 3: Strategic Thinking & Complex Reasoning
Standard: Earth Systems and Patterns - The scientific theory of the evolution of Earth states that changes in our planet are driven by the flow of energy and the cycling of matter through dynamic interactions among the atmosphere, hydrosphere, cryosphere, geosphere, and biosphere, and the resources used to sustain human civilization on Earth.
Date Adopted or Revised: 02/08
Date of Last Rating: 05/08
Status: State Board Approved

Related Courses

This benchmark is part of these courses.
2002050: M/J Comprehensive Science 1, Advanced (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 - 2022, 2022 and beyond (current))
2001020: M/J Earth/Space Science, Advanced (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 - 2022, 2022 and beyond (current))
2001310: Earth/Space Science (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 - 2022, 2022 and beyond (current))
2001320: Earth/Space Science Honors (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 - 2022, 2022 and beyond (current))
2002400: Integrated Science 1 (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 - 2022, 2022 and beyond (current))
2002410: Integrated Science 1 Honors (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 - 2022, 2022 and beyond (current))
2002530: Marine Science 2 Honors (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 - 2022, 2022 and beyond (current))
1800310: Aerospace Science 2 (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 - 2022, 2022 - 2023 (current), 2023 and beyond)
1800320: Aerospace Science 3 (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 - 2022, 2022 and beyond (current))
1800360: Aerospace Science 4 (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 - 2022, 2022 and beyond (current))
7920020: Access Earth/Space Science (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 - 2018, 2018 and beyond)
7920025: Access Integrated Science 1 (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 - 2018, 2018 and beyond)
2002055: M/J Comprehensive Science 1 Accelerated Honors (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 - 2022, 2022 and beyond (current))
2002405: Integrated Science 1 for Credit Recovery (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 - 2020 (course terminated))
2003500: Renewable Energy 1 Honors (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 - 2022, 2022 - 2023 (current), 2023 and beyond)
2001330: Meteorology Honors (Specifically in versions: 2016 - 2019, 2019 - 2022, 2022 and beyond (current))

Related Access Points

Alternate version of this benchmark for students with significant cognitive disabilities.
SC.912.E.7.In.3: Describe the interactions among the atmosphere, hydrosphere, and biosphere, including how air, water, and land support living things and how air temperature affects water and land temperatures.
SC.912.E.7.Su.3: Recognize components of the atmosphere, the hydrosphere, and the biosphere.
SC.912.E.7.Pa.3: Recognize that humans, plants, and animals live on the Earth (biosphere).

Related Resources

Vetted resources educators can use to teach the concepts and skills in this benchmark.

Lesson Plans

Sea Level Rise: The Ocean's Uplifting Experience:

The purpose of this lesson is to introduce students to the concept of sea level rise as it occurs through climate change by having them examine 3 specific parameters:  ice distribution, thermal expansion, and analyzing and interpreting data.  The lesson and activities within the lesson were designed using the three dimensions of the Framework for K-12 Science Education and the Next Generation Science Standards – specifically crosscutting concepts, science and engineering practices, and disciplinary core ideas. While there isn’t any required pre-requisite learning required for this lesson, a general understanding of sea-level rise, glaciers, and climate may be beneficial to students. During classroom breaks, pairs of students will develop/discuss their models, revise their interpretations of their models or data, and think-pair-share their thoughts on the investigation segments.

Type: Lesson Plan

USGS Science for an El Niño Winter:

In this lesson, students will analyze an informational text on the work the USGS (United States Geological Survey) is doing to monitor the effects of the 2015-2016 winter season as it is impacted by El Niño. The lesson plan includes a note-taking guide, text-dependent questions, a writing prompt, answer keys, and a writing rubric. Options to extend the lesson are also included.

Type: Lesson Plan

Hurricanes: Birth, Life, and Death:

In this lesson, students will analyze an in-depth NASA article on how hurricanes form, develop, and weaken. Additionally the article informs the reader about the history of hurricanes and naming conventions throughout the world as well as the latest technology to study hurricane anatomy, development geographic distribution, and frequency. The lesson plan includes a note-taking guide, text-dependent questions, a writing prompt, answer keys, and a writing rubric. Options to extend the lesson are also included.

Type: Lesson Plan

Banana River Fish Kill Report:

Students will be able to describe various interactions between the atmosphere, geosphere, and hydrosphere and their effects on the biosphere of the Banana River.

Type: Lesson Plan

Major Meltdown: Colorado High Peaks Losing Glaciers:

This lesson plan is designed to support reading in the content area. In this lesson, students will read a text that describes the results of a long-term study of the changes in the crysophere on Niwot Ridge, which lies at the top of the Continental Divide in the Rocky Mountains. The text describes the ways in which the cryosphere has changed due to climate change, and it also describes some of the impacts on the ecosystem and explains how the researchers gathered their data. The lesson plan includes text-dependent questions, a writing prompt, sample answers, and a writing rubric.

Type: Lesson Plan

It's Getting Hot In... Lakes?:

This lesson is designed to support reading in the content area. In this lesson, students will read a text that describes the effect of climate change on the water supply and on ecosystems around the world. The article introduces research from a study spanning six continents that analyzed data to determine the rate at which Earth's lakes are warming. The author then uses this data to connect to the impacts on Earth's ecosystems and on human lives. The lesson plan includes a note-taking guide, text-dependent questions, a writing prompt, answer keys, and a writing rubric.

Type: Lesson Plan

The Struggle of Mountains: Erosion vs. Plate Tectonics:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. In this lesson, students will read and analyze an informational text that describes the relationship between plate tectonics and erosion in the formation of Earth's surface. The article includes information describing how scientists are measuring the impact of both of these processes using sediment cores. The article presents findings from a recent study that shows, through data from sediment cores, that erosion is occurring faster than mountain building by plate tectonics. The lesson plan includes a text coding strategy, text-dependent questions, a writing prompt, answer keys, and a writing rubric. Numerous options to extend the lesson are also included.

Type: Lesson Plan

Is Ozone Always a Positive Force in the Environment?:

In this lesson, students will analyze an informational text that addresses the importance of ozone and its positive and negative impacts on life on Earth. The text describes the formation of the ozone layer as a natural occurrence. It also describes the formation of the ozone layer where it can negatively impact living organisms. This informational text is designed to support reading in the content area. The lesson plan includes a note-taking guide, text-dependent questions, a writing prompt, answer keys, and a writing rubric.

Type: Lesson Plan

Albedo:

The solar energy that reaches Earth is either absorbed or reflected. Albedo is the percentage of solar energy that is reflected off a specific surface.

This lesson introduces the concept of albedo by comparing the albedo values of various surfaces.

Type: Lesson Plan

Evaluating the Greenhouse Effect:

In these experiments the student will be measuring the change in temperature of 2 samples of air, one that is ambient and one that has had added carbon dioxide. By doing this they will be able to see the correlation of added carbon dioxide and increased temperatures. In a second experiment, the student will evaluate the uptake of carbon dioxide by plant life, and derive conclusions for reducing the greenhouse effect.

Type: Lesson Plan

Albedo and Climate Change:

Students will explore the effect albedo has on the Earth's heat budget and global climate change by measuring the albedo of different outdoor surfaces.

Type: Lesson Plan

Changing World Oceans - An Ocean Acidification Simulation:

This 5-day lesson introduces students to the phenomenon of ocean acidification, including processes involved and the importance it has on Earth ecosystems. It focuses on the atmosphere / hydrosphere interaction with respect to carbon dioxide. The lesson progresses from the introductory first day where student preconceptions and misconceptions are identified and addressed in an introductory lesson. The lab on the second day can be accomplished using non-specialized, inexpensive equipment or more sophisticated probeware. Day 3 is for data analysis and reflecting on the lab results and building process diagrams, and days 4 and 5 are time for writing the lab report.

Type: Lesson Plan

Original Student Tutorial

Our Interacting Earth:

Explore the connections and interactions between spheres, including the lithosphere, atmosphere, biosphere, hydrosphere, and cryosphere, on our ever-changing Earth in this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Perspectives Video: Experts

Severe Weather and Water:

Michael Kozar talks about the influence land and water have on severe weather.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Expert

Studying Biogeochemical Cycles in the Ocean:

Dean Grubbs discusses biogeochemical cycles in the oceans and their impact.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Expert

Past Climate Change:

Angela Dial discusses the geologic and scientific evidence related to climate change in the past.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Expert

Earth's Past Climate:

Angela Dial talks about using ocean core proxy data to investigate Earth's climate from the past.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Expert

Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiasts

Watershed:

Kent Koptiuch talks about watersheds and water quality.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Aquifers:

Kent Koptiuch talks about aquifers and the importance of water quality.

Download the CPALMS Perspectives video student note taking guide.

Type: Perspectives Video: Professional/Enthusiast

Teaching Idea

How Does Melting Ice Affect Sea Level?:

In this activity, students investigate the effects of melting ice sheets and ice caps on sea level by constructing a pair of models and seeing the effects of ice melt in two different situations.

Type: Teaching Idea

Text Resources

Text Resource: USGS Science for an El Niño Winter:

This informational text resource is designed to support reading in the content area. El Niño is known to cause weather disturbances, however, its impact on winter storms causes a slew of additional complications when coupled with rising ocean levels instigated by global warming. The USGS reviews the effects, efforts to study the phenomena, and hints at ways to plan strategically for them in this timely article.

Type: Text Resource

Hurricanes: The Greatest Storms on Earth:

This informational text resource is designed to support reading in the content area. The article is provides background information on the different names for tropical cyclones, how hurricanes develop and weaken, and where in the world they are found. It also describes the technology used to study hurricanes and how hurricanes are categorized in terms of intensity.

Type: Text Resource

Colorado High Peaks Losing Glaciers as Climate Warms:

This informational text resource is designed to support reading in the content area. The text describes the results of a study that show declines in ice—glaciers, permafrost, subsurface ice, and lake ice—at the Niwot Ridge in the Rocky Mountains over the past thirty years. The text describes that the researchers attribute the declines in ice to climate change. Using the results of their study, the scientists also make a startling prediction that the Arikaree Glacier in the Rocky Mountains will disappear in twenty years.

Type: Text Resource

Lakes Around the World Rapidly Warming:

This informational text resource is designed to support reading in the content area. This article describes the effect of climate change on the water supply and on ecosystems around the world. The article introduces research from a study spanning six continents that analyzed data to determine the rate at which Earth's lakes are warming. The author then uses this data to connect to the impacts on Earth's ecosystems and on human lives.

Type: Text Resource

Chemistry in the Sunlight:

This informational text resource is designed to support reading in the content area. The article explains that sunlight is an important aspect of ozone formation. The ozone layer forms in the stratosphere, which is located above the layer of the atmosphere that we breathe (the troposphere). There is ozone formation also occurring in the troposphere, which is very toxic to living organisms, naturally but mostly due to by-products from the burning of fossil fuels and other human activities. The text describes the different chemical processes of ozone formation in these two layers of the atmosphere.

Type: Text Resource

Climate Can Grind Down Mountains Faster Than They Can Rebuild:

This informational text resource is designed to support reading in the content area. The article describes the relationship between plate tectonics and erosion in the formation of Earth's surfaces and discusses how scientists are measuring the impact of both of these processes. The article presents findings from a recent study that shows, through data from sediment cores, that erosion is occurring faster than mountain building by plate tectonics.

Type: Text Resource

Debate Tests Accuracy of Tree Ring Data :

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. The article explains the controversy surrounding the research of scientists Mann, Fuentes, and Rutherford, whose work suggests that tree rings may not be as accurate a record of past climate changes as once thought. The author explains how the reliance on one type or source of data is a limitation in science and discusses the other information available to reconstruct climates of the past.

Type: Text Resource

Tornadoes Strike Again. How Do They Work?:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. Tornado events seem to be increasing over the years. Computer simulations and high-resolution satellite imagery are a few of the emerging technologies that have helped us to predict and respond more rapidly to this deadly force of nature. The article gives a solid discussion of the role of latent heat and moving air in tornado formation. It also reviews energy transformations and gives an overview of several ways that people can more safely live in Tornado Alley.

Type: Text Resource

The Calamitous Climate Responsible for Florida's Record Rainfall:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. This article introduces extreme rainfall as an effect of climate change that is both measurable and personal - as it occurred in our own back yard. The article discusses the storm in Pensacola before heading into information about climate change.

Type: Text Resource

Snowflake Science: How it Snows for Days in the Arctic:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. The purpose of this text is to explain how a conceptual model for snowfall in the Arctic is useful in explaining how snow falls for days on end in relatively clean atmospheric conditions.

Type: Text Resource

Tutorial

Winds of Change: Fostering Literacy with Science Texts:

Click "View Site" to open a full-screen version. This tutorial is designed to help secondary science teachers learn how to integrate literacy skills into their science curriculum. This tutorial will demonstrate a number of strategies teachers can impart to students to help students learn how to translate visual information into words. The focus on literacy across content areas is intended to help foster students' reading, writing, and thinking skills in multiple disciplines.

Type: Tutorial

Video/Audio/Animation

Will an Ice Cube Melt Faster in Freshwater or Saltwater?:

With an often unexpected outcome from a simple experiment, students can discover the factors that cause and influence thermohaline circulation in our oceans. In two 45-minute class periods, students complete activities where they observe the melting of ice cubes in saltwater and freshwater, using basic materials: clear plastic cups, ice cubes, water, salt, food coloring, and thermometers. There are no prerequisites for this lesson but it is helpful if students are familiar with the concepts of density and buoyancy as well as the salinity of seawater. It is also helpful if students understand that dissolving salt in water will lower the freezing point of water. There are additional follow up investigations that help students appreciate and understand the importance of the ocean's influence on Earth's climate.

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Original Student Tutorials Science - Grades K-8

Our Interacting Earth:

Explore the connections and interactions between spheres, including the lithosphere, atmosphere, biosphere, hydrosphere, and cryosphere, on our ever-changing Earth in this interactive tutorial.

Student Resources

Vetted resources students can use to learn the concepts and skills in this benchmark.

Original Student Tutorial

Our Interacting Earth:

Explore the connections and interactions between spheres, including the lithosphere, atmosphere, biosphere, hydrosphere, and cryosphere, on our ever-changing Earth in this interactive tutorial.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Lesson Plan

Sea Level Rise: The Ocean's Uplifting Experience:

The purpose of this lesson is to introduce students to the concept of sea level rise as it occurs through climate change by having them examine 3 specific parameters:  ice distribution, thermal expansion, and analyzing and interpreting data.  The lesson and activities within the lesson were designed using the three dimensions of the Framework for K-12 Science Education and the Next Generation Science Standards – specifically crosscutting concepts, science and engineering practices, and disciplinary core ideas. While there isn’t any required pre-requisite learning required for this lesson, a general understanding of sea-level rise, glaciers, and climate may be beneficial to students. During classroom breaks, pairs of students will develop/discuss their models, revise their interpretations of their models or data, and think-pair-share their thoughts on the investigation segments.

Type: Lesson Plan

Video/Audio/Animation

Will an Ice Cube Melt Faster in Freshwater or Saltwater?:

With an often unexpected outcome from a simple experiment, students can discover the factors that cause and influence thermohaline circulation in our oceans. In two 45-minute class periods, students complete activities where they observe the melting of ice cubes in saltwater and freshwater, using basic materials: clear plastic cups, ice cubes, water, salt, food coloring, and thermometers. There are no prerequisites for this lesson but it is helpful if students are familiar with the concepts of density and buoyancy as well as the salinity of seawater. It is also helpful if students understand that dissolving salt in water will lower the freezing point of water. There are additional follow up investigations that help students appreciate and understand the importance of the ocean's influence on Earth's climate.

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Parent Resources

Vetted resources caregivers can use to help students learn the concepts and skills in this benchmark.