SC.5.L.17.1

Compare and contrast adaptations displayed by animals and plants that enable them to survive in different environments such as life cycles variations, animal behaviors and physical characteristics.

Clarifications

Annually assessed on Grade 5 Science FCAT 2.0. Also assesses SC.3.L.17.1, SC.4.L.16.2, SC.4.L.16.3, SC.4.L.17.1, SC.4.L.17.4, and SC.5.L.15.1.
General Information
Subject Area: Science
Grade: 5
Body of Knowledge: Life Science
Idea: Level 2: Basic Application of Skills & Concepts
Big Idea: Interdependence -

A. Plants and animals, including humans, interact with and depend upon each other and their environment to satisfy their basic needs.

B. Both human activities and natural events can have major impacts on the environment.

C. Energy flows from the sun through producers to consumers.

Date Adopted or Revised: 02/08
Date of Last Rating: 05/08
Status: State Board Approved
Assessed: Yes
Test Item Specifications
  • Item Type(s): This benchmark may be assessed using: MC item(s)
  • Also Assesses
    SC.3.L.17.1
    Describe how animals and plants respond to changing seasons.

    SC.4.L.16.2 Explain that although characteristics of plants and animals are inherited, some characteristics can be affected by the environment.

    SC.4.L.16.3 Recognize that animal behaviors may be shaped by heredity and learning.

    SC.4.L.17.1 Compare the seasonal changes in Florida plants and animals to those in other regions of the country.

    SC.4.L.17.4 Recognize ways plants and animals, including humans, can impact the environment.

    SC.5.L.15.1 Describe how, when the environment changes, differences between individuals allow some plants and animals to survive and reproduce while others die or move to new locations.

  • Clarification :
    Students will explain, compare, and/or contrast how adaptations displayed by animals or plants enable them to survive in different environments.

    Students will describe or explain how animals and/or plants respond to changing seasons.

    Students will distinguish plant or animal characteristics that are inherited from those that are affected by the environment.

    Students will identify characteristics of animals that are inherited or distinguish inherited characteristics from those that are shaped by learning.

    Students will compare the seasonal changes in Florida plants and/or animals to those in other regions of the country.

    Students will identify ways in which plants and/or animals can impact the environment.

    Students will describe how, when the environment changes, differences between organisms allow some plants and animals to survive and reproduce while others die or move to new locations.
  • Content Limits :
    Items referring to the adaptation of organisms to different environments may address but will not assess the different stages of the organism’s life cycle.

    Items may require knowledge of how animals living in a particular environment are adapted to survive the seasonal changes in that environment.

    Items will not assess renewable or nonrenewable resources.
  • Stimulus Attributes :
    The term characteristic should be used rather than the term trait.
  • Response Attributes :
    None specified
  • Prior Knowledge :
    Items may require the student to apply science knowledge described in the NGSSS from lower grades. This benchmark requires prerequisite knowledge from SC.1.L.16.1, SC.2.L.17.1, and SC.2.L.17.2.
Sample Test Items (1)
  • Test Item #: Sample Item 1
  • Question: Loggerhead sea turtles are large turtles that live in the ocean and nest on the Florida coast. The female loggerhead sea turtle lays more than 100 eggs in the beach sand. How is laying so many eggs an important adaptation that helps these turtles to survive?
  • Difficulty: N/A
  • Type: MC: Multiple Choice

Related Courses

This benchmark is part of these courses.
5020060: Science - Grade 5 (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 and beyond (current))
7720060: Access Science Grade 5 (Specifically in versions: 2014 - 2015, 2015 - 2018, 2018 and beyond (current))

Related Access Points

Alternate version of this benchmark for students with significant cognitive disabilities.
SC.5.L.17.In.1: Identify features of common plants and animals that enable them to survive in different habitats (environments).
SC.5.L.17.Su.1: Recognize that many different kinds of living things are found in different habitats.
SC.5.L.17.Pa.1: Match common living things with their habitats.

Related Resources

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

Educational Game

All About Plants:

Students have an opportunity to discover plants from around the world that are housed at the New York Botanical Gardens. Students learn about the kinds of plants and then try seven different Plant Challenges where they show their knowledge about plant leaves, plants we eat, plants we use in our lives, how plants reproduce, how plants have evolved, plants and pollinators and plants in specific biomes.

Type: Educational Game

Educational Software / Tool

What Is It Like Where You Live?:

This site offers an abundance of information on Earth's biomes (rainforest, tundra, taiga, desert, temperate, and grasslands), as well as marine and freshwater ecosystems. The site features relevant facts, pictures, maps, indigenous plants and animals, additional links, and much more.

This resource is a wonderful reference, not a lesson plan. Teachers will need to provide an objective and structure for student interaction with the website.

Type: Educational Software / Tool

Image/Photographs

Photos of Ecological Adaptations:

This website uses images of many insects to illustrate various forms of coloration or patterning for camouflage, mating, communication, mimicry, and other purposes. Examples for entomological use include walking sticks, katydids, moths, ambush bugs, and many others.

Type: Image/Photograph

Animal Mouths:

This collection of images of six different animals illustrates the wide range of feeding strategies and physical structures that have grown out of the relationship between organisms and their food. The environment plays a dramatic role in shaping the evolutionary changes that organisms undergo, and for animals, food is one of the most important components of the environment.

Type: Image/Photograph

Bird Beak Gallery:

It is usually possible to look at a tool or a kitchen utensil and tell what the item is used for, based on its shape. The same is true for bird beaks. Each species has a beak with a particular shape and size that says a lot about what and how that type of bird eats. This collection of images provides a sample of the diversity of bird beaks that exists worldwide. The birds featured in this slide show are: Bald Eagle, Black-Necked Stilt, Black Oystercatcher, Brown Pelican, Great Blue Heron, Great Crested Flycatcher, Indigo Bunting, Pileated Woodpecker, Red Crossbill, Roseate Spoonbill.

Type: Image/Photograph

Bird Food:

The shape of a bird's beak says a lot about what the bird eats. Whether long or short, broad or narrow, each type of beak is perfectly matched to a particular type of food. This collection of images shows a wide range of beak types and the kinds of food each might be used to eat.

Type: Image/Photograph

Lesson Plans

Snook, Home Sweet Home:

Students will learn about the services that mangroves provide to an ecosystem, besides just being a home for snook. They will fill out different worksheets using the readings as well as their own critical thinking.

Type: Lesson Plan

Gr. 5 Lesson 3-Fishy Business:

Students will examine the effect of exotic species on an ecosystem by role-playing both a healthy food chain and one that has been impacted by Mayan cichlids.

Type: Lesson Plan

Survive or Die:

In this technology-rich lesson, students will design a habitat in which a plant or animal can survive. Students will focus on the adaptations that allow certain plants and animals to live in specific habitats.

Type: Lesson Plan

Forest Ecosystem:

Students are presented with this scenario: A horrible forest fire has come through an ecosystem near you! Students will need to provide a detailed news article explaining the effect that this fire had on the food chain and how local citizens can help to restore the ecosystem. In addition to providing steps to rebuild, they must also convince readers that steps need to be taken in advance to prepare ecosystems for similar disasters.

Type: Lesson Plan

Adaptations: Will You Survive?:

This unit begins by classifying animals into major groups (mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, fish, vertebrates and those having live births and those which lay eggs) according to their physical characteristics and behaviors.

Students will review the path of the flow of energy from the Sun as it is transferred along the food chain through the producers to the consumers, and recognize ways plants and animals, including humans, can impact the environment.

Students will compare and contrast adaptations of animals and plants that enable them to survive.

Type: Lesson Plan

Interplanetary Zoo:

Students will explore animal adaptations and habitats when aliens from an Earthlike planet send the Earth a gift of animals from their planet and the animals must be placed in a zoo. Students will use the characteristics of the animals to figure out the habitat the animals are best adapted to.

Type: Lesson Plan

Exploring Adaptations!:

Have you ever wondered why animals and plants possess adaptations that allow them to survive in their unique environment? This lesson allows students to build on their knowledge of habitats and learn about different animal adaptations and physical characteristics while conducting a short research project.

Type: Lesson Plan

Arctic Animals and a Changing Climate:

Learn about the effects of a changing climate on the Arctic ecosystem and four of its well-known mammals: the polar bear, the walrus, the Arctic fox and the beluga whale.

Type: Lesson Plan

Seed Starters:

This MEA presents a non-profit group that helps start schools gardens. This client is looking to switch to a tomato seed that is adapted to increased moisture in the soil due to precipitation and is versatile and great tasting. The engineering team will examine the seeds presented and develop a procedural method to rank the seeds based on the client's needs. The engineering team will reach a decision as to the best choice of seed for the client.

Type: Lesson Plan

Panther Protection 101:

Students in this MEA will use real-world problem solving skills and collaborative skills to partner with a local university in it's efforts to raise awareness to help protect and restore the Florida Panther's habitat. The Florida panther is Florida's official state animal.

Type: Lesson Plan

Florida Animals and Plants Research:

This resource is a guided approach to researching for fifth graders. It assists in setting up a research framework for students to use as a guideline to completing a good research project.

Type: Lesson Plan

Exploring Habitats!:

If you could live anywhere in the world, where would you live? Do you think you could survive anywhere in the world or in any habitat? What types of adaptations might help you survive in your dream habitat? Many places seem great to visit, but you won't know if it's the place for you unless you know the characteristics of the habitat. This lesson will encourage your students to research habitats and adaptations that allow plants and animals to survive in their natural environments.

Type: Lesson Plan

Now You See Me! Now You Don't ! - A Comprehension Instructional Sequence (CIS) Lesson:

This lesson uses the Comprehension Instructional Sequence reading model to compare and contrast color adaptations displayed by animals that enable them to survive in different environments such as animal behaviors and physical characteristics.

Type: Lesson Plan

What’s New at the Zoo?—an Engineering Design Challenge:

This Engineering Design Challenge is intended to help fifth grade students apply the concepts of plant and animal life cycles and physical characteristics, as well as animal behaviors in a compare and contrast situation. It is not intended as an initial introduction to this benchmark.

Type: Lesson Plan

Cicada Invasion:

This lesson gives you the chance to think about how some animals, periodical cicadas, survive well in a particular environment due to the species life cycle. You will be able to observe the interactions among the cicadas and the other organisms within an environment.

Type: Lesson Plan

Bird Beaks:

This lesson focuses on bird beaks, exploring the relationship between a bird's beak and its ability to find food and survive in a given environment.

Type: Lesson Plan

Bird Buffet (Animal Survival):

Students learn that an animal's physical attributes, such as a bird's beak, may provide an advantage for survival in one environment but not in another. Students will participate in modeling and investigating structure and function relationships.

Type: Lesson Plan

A Tasty Experiment:

In this activity, students conduct an experiment to determine whether or not the sense of smell is important for being able to recognize foods by taste. This activity supports learning about engineering and design processes.

Type: Lesson Plan

Amazing Adaptations!—An Engineering Design Challenge:

This Engineering Design Challenge is intended to help fifth grade students apply the concept of how structural and behavioral adaptations contribute to the survival of an animal species. Some suggested background building lessons are included, but it is not intended as an initial introduction to this benchmark.

Type: Lesson Plan

Be very, very quiet... Hunting MEA:

This activity has students getting a request from a client asking them to pick the best new breed for hunting moles.

Type: Lesson Plan

Introduction To The Nature Journal:

In the lessons here, students exercise the observation skills that are essential to writing, visual art, and science. First, they try to use evocative language in describing pictures of birds from the Smithsonian's National Zoo. They go on to record observations and to make hypotheses as they follow the behavior of animals on the National Zoo's live webcams. They can watch the giant pandas, the tigers, the cheetahs, the gorillas, or any of a dozen other species.

Type: Lesson Plan

Part 1: Pond Life:

This lesson is designed for students to investigate familiar and unfamiliar ecosystems using Internet resources, to explore how various organisms satisfy their needs within their environments, and to study the kinds of relationships that exist between organisms within an environment.

Type: Lesson Plan

Lesson Study Resource Kit

Exploring Diversity and Evolution: A Lesson Study Resource Kit for Grades 3-5:

This resource kit provides teachers engaged in lesson study with exemplary content background, unit and lesson plans, assessment items and tasks, and informational texts, related to the teaching and learning of diversity and evolution in grades 3-5. Complete with links to activities and lessons as well guiding questions, this resource kit contains all of the materials that a team would need to construct a unit of instruction that fully aligns to the NGSSS for science, while supporting the informational text component of the Florida Standards for English language arts.

Type: Lesson Study Resource Kit

Original Student Tutorial

Amazing Animal Adaptations:

Learn how adaptations can help animals survive in their environments.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Presentation/Slideshow

Animal Adaptations:

This is an accessible, easy-to-read book about some of the adaptations animals make in order to survive and thrive. It can be downloaded in Power Point, Impress, and Flash formats. For struggling or non-readers the book can be read aloud in a variety of voices. All of the book on the Tarheel Reader site can be used with an Intellikeys keyboard and a custom overlay, a touch screen, and up to three switches. The text and background colors can be modified for students with visual impairments.

Type: Presentation/Slideshow

Teaching Ideas

Build Octopus Chromatophores:

In this hands-on and web interactive design challenge, students will learn about cephalopod camouflage techniques and how this animal adaptation helps it to survive. Students explore how cephalopods are able to rapidly change color by designing a model pigment sac from basic materials.

Type: Teaching Idea

The Mystery of Tiny Algal Spores:

In this video, students will learn from a researcher about adaptations algae have developed to enable them to withstand water forces in their habitat.

Type: Teaching Idea

Fish Heads:

In this activity, students study fish heads and discuss adaptations and habitats.

Type: Teaching Idea

Animal Adaptations:

In this activity, students will participate in classroom discussions and visit Wild Kratts on PBS Kids to learn more about animals and how well (or poorly) they've adapted to satisfying their needs in their natural habitats.

Type: Teaching Idea

Who Will Survive?:

Students will model natural selection by using various utensils to "capture food".

Type: Teaching Idea

Peppered Moth Simulation:

In this lab, you will simulate how predators locate prey in different environments. You will analyze how color affects an organism's ability to survive in certain environments.

Type: Teaching Idea

Camouflage For Animals:

Using photos of animals students will study how coloring, markings, and physical actions can make an animal better adapted to its environment.

Type: Teaching Idea

Name Game-SeaWorld Classroom Activity:

Students will investigate what killer whales are called in other countries. They will increase their awareness of geography by mapping the names. Finally students explore Greek and Latin root words to develop a scientific vocabulary.

Type: Teaching Idea

Habitat Corners-SeaWorld Classroom Activity:

Students will be able to describe the kinds of habitats where fish are found.

Type: Teaching Idea

Full of Hot Air-SeaWorld Classroom Activity:

Students will be able to demonstrate the insulating qualities of trapped air, given the listed materials. Students will be able to infer how fur or feathers helps insulate animals.

Type: Teaching Idea

Dive Like a Dolphin-SeaWorld Classroom Activity:

Students make predictions, then plan and conduct an investigation. They discuss whether their evidence is consistent with a proposed explanation and communicate the steps and results from their investigation.

Type: Teaching Idea

Design a Sea Lion-A SeaWorld Classroom Activity:

Students investigate sea lion adaptations and create a sketch that illustrates a sea lion's body parts and adaptations.

Type: Teaching Idea

Animal Adaptations-SeaWorld Classroom Activity:

Students will identify various animal adaptations.

Type: Teaching Idea

Bird Beaks:

This lesson focuses on bird beaks, exploring the relationship between a bird's beak and its ability to find food and survive in a given environment.

Type: Teaching Idea

Animal Mouth Structures:

In this teaching idea, students gather evidence to understand features that enable animals to meet their needs. In particular, students examine images and videos of the mouth structures of different animals to help them understand how animals are adapted to obtain food in their environment.

Type: Teaching Idea

A Dolphin's Day-SeaWorld Classroom Activity:

In this activity, the students will use number and listening skills as they reinforce their understanding of dolphin behavior using echolocation. As the students listen to the teacher read a story about a dolphin's adventure they can either connect dots or plot points on a graph to figure out what the dolphin gets to eat at the end of the story.

Type: Teaching Idea

Adaptation:

In this activity, students examine some of the behaviors and physical characteristics that enable organisms to live successfully in their environment.

Type: Teaching Idea

Design a Fish-SeaWorld Classroom Activity:

In this activity, the students will use a modeling compound to make fish-shaped refrigerator magnets. They will use observation skills to learn about different fish body types and replicate them with the modeling compound.

Type: Teaching Idea

Dolphin Polo-SeaWorld Classroom Activity:

In this activity, students will play a game to experience how dolphins use echolocation to find their food.

Type: Teaching Idea

Fat, Flippers, and Faces-SeaWorld Classroom Activity:

In this activity, the students will learn about four different manatee structural adaptations.

Type: Teaching Idea

Good Vibrations-SeaWorld Classroom Activity:

In this activity, students investigate how sound travels through air, solids, and water, students will be able to explain why sound is an effective means of communication and navigation for whales.

Type: Teaching Idea

Heat Keepers-SeaWorld Classroom Activity:

In this activity, students will investigate how the shape and volume of body forms affect heat loss.

Type: Teaching Idea

It's A Wolf's Life:

As a result of this activity, students will be able to understand the interconnectedness of organisms and their environment. Additionally, they will obtain a simple understanding of how graphs are used to follow and determine scientific trends.

Type: Teaching Idea

Jump or Be Lunch! SeaWorld Classroom Activity:

Students will predict how high they can jump and then compare the height of their jumps to how high a rockhopper penguin can jump out of the water. They will practice mathematical skills for determining averages.

Type: Teaching Idea

Robo Shark-SeaWorld Classroom Activity:

In this activity, the students will create a fictional shark and a futuristic habitat.

Type: Teaching Idea

Specialized Structures and Environments:

This investigation will show students specialization in species as it applies to heredity and adaptation of species to their given environment.

Type: Teaching Idea

Suited for Survival-SeaWorld Classroom Activity:

In the activity, the students will research a particular marine environment to create a new (plant or animal) with adaptations that suit the species for the environment and predict how the new species might effect the ecosystem into which it is introduced.

Type: Teaching Idea

Web Of Life:

This resource is a simulation game where students represent plants and animals living in a forest habitat. Sitting in a circle, they connect themselves using string to represent the ways they depend on each other. As they make connections, the string forms a web of life. They will also learn what occurs when an invasive species enters their environment.

Type: Teaching Idea

Text Resources

Why Amazonian Butterflies Hover over Yellow-Spotted Turtles:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. The text details the intriguing relationship between turtles and butterflies in the Amazon rainforest: butterflies drink the turtles' tears to get their sodium fix! The article also explores how both organisms are affected by this relationship.

Type: Text Resource

Sea Horses and How They Use Their Heads:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. The article describes how the dwarf seahorse's head shape allows it to be a better predator.

Type: Text Resource

Carniverous Plants Say 'Cheese':

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. The article describes how, through high-speed video, scientists are able to see how bladderworts (carnivorous plants) trap small animals very quickly.

Type: Text Resource

The Bad Breath Defense:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. The article describes the ability of the hornworm caterpillar to defend itself against predators using its food source.

Type: Text Resource

Caught in the Act:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. The article discusses the study of a population's ability to adapt to the environment. The section of focus is on the cichlid population in Lake Victoria.

Type: Text Resource

Secrets of the World's Extreme Divers:

This informational text resource is intended to support reading in the content area. "Secrets of the World's Extreme Divers" explores the reason sea mammals are able to hold their breath for long periods of time.

Type: Text Resource

Plant Adaptations:

This is an informational resource for teachers and students. It contains descriptions and pictures of different biomes, examples of some of the plants that live there, and some of the adaptations those plants have. This resource only covers plant adaptation not animals.

Type: Text Resource

Unit/Lesson Sequence

Animal Adaptations:

In this lesson the students will learn about the adaptations of the opposum. They will also learn about some of the very extreme cases of adaptation. The students will be taught that sometimes whether or not an animal survives depends on the life cycle that the animal has.

Type: Unit/Lesson Sequence

Video/Audio/Animations

Beneath the Waters of Cocos Island:

Cocos Island, a remote volcanic summit in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, serves as a beacon for hungry predators, including thousands of hammerhead sharks that travel here each year in search of prey. This video segment from NOVA: "Island of Sharks" depicts some of the common predator-prey interactions that take place in the nutrient-rich waters surrounding the island and focuses on the advantages and disadvantages of one behavioral adaptation common among prey fishes: schooling.

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Desert Biome:

This video segment from NOVA: "A Desert Place" details the behaviors and habitats of some of the Sonoran Desert's creatures, focusing on the adaptations they use to survive in one of the most extreme environments in the world.

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Teri and Jarius: Biome Buddies:

This video segment from ZOOM compares and contrasts some of the more interesting climatic and ecological characteristics of the Death Valley desert with those found in the temperate rainforest of the Pacific Northwest. Adapatations used by plants and animals in these climates are discussed and further highlighted in the background essay.

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Beavers:

The beaver is often referred to as nature's own engineer. This video segment focuses on the beaver's ability to transform its environment to suit itself. The beaver does so with an innate ability to construct dams -- a feat no creature, save humans, is able to achieve.

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Masters of Disguise:

This video segment explores the world of camouflage, including some of the methods and benefits of this important evolutionary strategy. Footage from NOVA: "Animal Impostors."

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

STEM Lessons - Model Eliciting Activity

Be very, very quiet... Hunting MEA:

This activity has students getting a request from a client asking them to pick the best new breed for hunting moles.

Interplanetary Zoo:

Students will explore animal adaptations and habitats when aliens from an Earthlike planet send the Earth a gift of animals from their planet and the animals must be placed in a zoo. Students will use the characteristics of the animals to figure out the habitat the animals are best adapted to.

Panther Protection 101:

Students in this MEA will use real-world problem solving skills and collaborative skills to partner with a local university in it's efforts to raise awareness to help protect and restore the Florida Panther's habitat. The Florida panther is Florida's official state animal.

Seed Starters:

This MEA presents a non-profit group that helps start schools gardens. This client is looking to switch to a tomato seed that is adapted to increased moisture in the soil due to precipitation and is versatile and great tasting. The engineering team will examine the seeds presented and develop a procedural method to rank the seeds based on the client's needs. The engineering team will reach a decision as to the best choice of seed for the client.

Original Student Tutorials Science - Grades K-8

Amazing Animal Adaptations:

Learn how adaptations can help animals survive in their environments.

Student Resources

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

Original Student Tutorial

Amazing Animal Adaptations:

Learn how adaptations can help animals survive in their environments.

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Educational Game

All About Plants:

Students have an opportunity to discover plants from around the world that are housed at the New York Botanical Gardens. Students learn about the kinds of plants and then try seven different Plant Challenges where they show their knowledge about plant leaves, plants we eat, plants we use in our lives, how plants reproduce, how plants have evolved, plants and pollinators and plants in specific biomes.

Type: Educational Game

Image/Photograph

Photos of Ecological Adaptations:

This website uses images of many insects to illustrate various forms of coloration or patterning for camouflage, mating, communication, mimicry, and other purposes. Examples for entomological use include walking sticks, katydids, moths, ambush bugs, and many others.

Type: Image/Photograph

Presentation/Slideshow

Animal Adaptations:

This is an accessible, easy-to-read book about some of the adaptations animals make in order to survive and thrive. It can be downloaded in Power Point, Impress, and Flash formats. For struggling or non-readers the book can be read aloud in a variety of voices. All of the book on the Tarheel Reader site can be used with an Intellikeys keyboard and a custom overlay, a touch screen, and up to three switches. The text and background colors can be modified for students with visual impairments.

Type: Presentation/Slideshow

Text Resource

Plant Adaptations:

This is an informational resource for teachers and students. It contains descriptions and pictures of different biomes, examples of some of the plants that live there, and some of the adaptations those plants have. This resource only covers plant adaptation not animals.

Type: Text Resource

Video/Audio/Animations

Beneath the Waters of Cocos Island:

Cocos Island, a remote volcanic summit in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, serves as a beacon for hungry predators, including thousands of hammerhead sharks that travel here each year in search of prey. This video segment from NOVA: "Island of Sharks" depicts some of the common predator-prey interactions that take place in the nutrient-rich waters surrounding the island and focuses on the advantages and disadvantages of one behavioral adaptation common among prey fishes: schooling.

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Desert Biome:

This video segment from NOVA: "A Desert Place" details the behaviors and habitats of some of the Sonoran Desert's creatures, focusing on the adaptations they use to survive in one of the most extreme environments in the world.

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Teri and Jarius: Biome Buddies:

This video segment from ZOOM compares and contrasts some of the more interesting climatic and ecological characteristics of the Death Valley desert with those found in the temperate rainforest of the Pacific Northwest. Adapatations used by plants and animals in these climates are discussed and further highlighted in the background essay.

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Beavers:

The beaver is often referred to as nature's own engineer. This video segment focuses on the beaver's ability to transform its environment to suit itself. The beaver does so with an innate ability to construct dams -- a feat no creature, save humans, is able to achieve.

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Masters of Disguise:

This video segment explores the world of camouflage, including some of the methods and benefits of this important evolutionary strategy. Footage from NOVA: "Animal Impostors."

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Parent Resources

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

Lesson Plan

Part 1: Pond Life:

This lesson is designed for students to investigate familiar and unfamiliar ecosystems using Internet resources, to explore how various organisms satisfy their needs within their environments, and to study the kinds of relationships that exist between organisms within an environment.

Type: Lesson Plan

Presentation/Slideshow

Animal Adaptations:

This is an accessible, easy-to-read book about some of the adaptations animals make in order to survive and thrive. It can be downloaded in Power Point, Impress, and Flash formats. For struggling or non-readers the book can be read aloud in a variety of voices. All of the book on the Tarheel Reader site can be used with an Intellikeys keyboard and a custom overlay, a touch screen, and up to three switches. The text and background colors can be modified for students with visual impairments.

Type: Presentation/Slideshow

Teaching Ideas

Build Octopus Chromatophores:

In this hands-on and web interactive design challenge, students will learn about cephalopod camouflage techniques and how this animal adaptation helps it to survive. Students explore how cephalopods are able to rapidly change color by designing a model pigment sac from basic materials.

Type: Teaching Idea

The Mystery of Tiny Algal Spores:

In this video, students will learn from a researcher about adaptations algae have developed to enable them to withstand water forces in their habitat.

Type: Teaching Idea

Text Resource

Plant Adaptations:

This is an informational resource for teachers and students. It contains descriptions and pictures of different biomes, examples of some of the plants that live there, and some of the adaptations those plants have. This resource only covers plant adaptation not animals.

Type: Text Resource