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Topic: Ecosystems and biomes  

Geography

 Standard 7.  Knows the physical processes that shape patterns on Earth's surface
  Level II (Grade 3-5)
   Benchmark 1.Knows the physical components of Earth’s atmosphere (e.g., weather and climate), lithosphere (e.g., land forms such as mountains, hills, plateaus, plains), hydrosphere (e.g., oceans, lakes, rivers), and biosphere (e.g., vegetation and biomes)
    Knowledge/skill statements
     1.Knows the physical components of the Earth’s atmosphere
     2.Knows the physical components of the Earth’s lithosphere
     3.Knows the physical components of the Earth’s hydrosphere
     4.Knows the physical components of the Earth’s biosphere
     5.Knows that weather is a physical component of the Earth’s atmosphere
     6.Knows that climate is a physical component of the Earth’s atmosphere
     7.Knows that lands forms are a physical component of Earth’s lithosphere
     8.Knows that mountains are a physical component of the Earth’s lithosphere
     9.Knows that hills are a physical component of the Earth’s lithosphere
     10.Knows that plateaus are a physical component of the Earth’s lithosphere
     11.Knows that plains are a physical component of the Earth’s lithosphere
     12.Knows that oceans are a physical component of the Earth’s hydrosphere
     13.Knows that lakes are a physical component of the Earth’s hydrosphere
     14.Knows that rivers are a physical component of the Earth’s hydrosphere
     15.Knows that vegetation is a physical component of the Earth’s biosphere
     16.Knows that biomes are a physical component of the Earth’s biosphere
 Standard 8.  Understands the characteristics of ecosystems on Earth's surface
  Level II (Grade 3-5)
   Benchmark 1.Knows the components of ecosystems at a variety of scales (e.g., fungi, insects, plants, and animals in a food chain or food web; fish and marine vegetation in coastal zones; grasses, birds, and insects in grassland areas)
    Knowledge/skill statements
     1.Knows that fungi is a component of food chains
     2.Knows that fungi is a component of food webs
     3.Knows that insects are components of food chains
     4.Knows that insects are components of food webs
     5.Knows that plants are components of food chains
     6.Knows that plants are components of food webs
     7.Knows that animals are components of food chains
     8.Knows that animals are components of food web
     9.Knows fish are components of coastal zone ecosystems
     10.Knows that marine vegetation is a component of coastal zone ecosystems
     11.Knows that grasses are components of grassland ecosystems
     12.Knows that birds are components of grassland ecosystems
     13.Knows that insects are components of grassland ecosystems
   Benchmark 2.Knows ways in which humans can change ecosystems (e.g., clearing forests, widening channels of waterways, draining wetlands, wetting or suppressing fires)
    Knowledge/skill statements
     1.Knows that humans can change ecosystems by clearing forests
     2.Knows that humans can change ecosystems by widening channels of waterways
     3.Knows that humans can change ecosystems by draining wetlands
     4.Knows that humans can change ecosystems by wetting or suppressing fires
   Benchmark 3.Knows plants and animals associated with various vegetation and climatic regions on Earth (e.g., the plant and animal life supported in a midlatitude forest in North America, the kinds of plants and animals found in a tropical rain forest in Africa, animals and trees that thrive in cities)
    Knowledge/skill statements
     1.Knows plants associated with various vegetation regions on Earth
     2.Knows plants associated with various climatic regions on Earth
     3.Knows animals associated with various vegetation regions on Earth
     4.Knows animals associated with various climatic regions on Earth
     5.Knows the plant life supported by a North American midlatitude forest
     6.Knows the animal life supported by a North American midlatitude forest
     7.Knows the kinds of plants found in a tropical rain forest in Africa
     8.Knows the kinds of animals found in a tropical rain forest in Africa
     9.Knows the types of animals that thrive in cities
     10.Knows the types of trees that thrive in cities
  Level III (Grade 6-8)
   Benchmark 1.Understands the distribution of ecosystems from local to global scales (e.g., the consequences of differences in soils, climates, and human and natural disturbances)
    Knowledge/skill statements
     1.Understands the distribution of ecosystems on a local scale
     2.Understands the distribution of ecosystems on a global scale
     3.Understands how differences in soil affect the distribution of ecosystems on a local scale
     4.Understands how differences in soil affect the distribution of ecosystems on a global scale
     5.Understands how differences in climate affect the distribution of ecosystems on a local scale
     6.Understands how differences in climate affect the distribution of ecosystems on a global scale
     7.Understands how human disturbances affect the distribution of ecosystems on a local scale
     8.Understands how human disturbances affect the distribution of ecosystems on a global scale
     9.Understands how natural disturbances affect the distribution of ecosystems on a local scale
     10.Understands how natural disturbances affect the distribution of ecosystems on a global scale
   Benchmark 2.Understands the functions and dynamics of ecosystems (e.g., interdependence of flora and fauna, the flow of energy and the cycling of energy, feeding levels and location of elements in the food chain)
    Knowledge/skill statements
     1.Understands the functions of ecosystems
     2.Understands the dynamics of ecosystems
     3.Understands the interdependence of flora and fauna in an ecosystem
     4.Understands the flow of energy in an ecosystem
     5.Understands the cycling of energy in an ecosystem
     6.Understands the feeding levels in a food chain
     7.Understands the location of elements in a food chain
   Benchmark 3.Understands ecosystems in terms of their characteristics and ability to withstand stress caused by physical events (e.g., a river system adjusting to the arrival of introduced plant species such as hydrilla; regrowth of a forest after a forest fire; effects of disease on specific populations)
    Knowledge/skill statements
     1.Understands ecosystems in terms of their characteristics
     2.Understands ecosystems in terms of their ability to withstand stress caused by physical events
     3.Understands how a river system adjusts to the arrival of introduced plant species
     4.Knows how river systems adjusted to the arrival of the introduced plant species hydrilla
     5.Understands the regrowth of a forest after a forest fire
     6.Understands the effects of disease on specific populations
   Benchmark 4.Knows changes that have occurred over time in ecosystems in the local region (e.g., natural wetlands on a flood plain being replaced by farms, farmlands on a flood plain being replaced by housing developments)
    Knowledge/skill statements
     1.Knows instances of natural wetlands on a floodplain being replaced by farms
     2.Knows instances of farmlands on a floodplain being replaced by housing developments
   Benchmark 5.Knows the potential impact of human activities within a given ecosystem on the carbon, nitrogen, and oxygen cycles (e.g., the role of air pollution in atmospheric warming or the growing of peas and other legumes, which supply their own nitrogen and do not deplete the soil)
    Knowledge/skill statements
     1.Knows the potential impact of human activities on the carbon cycle within a given ecosystem
     2.Knows the potential impact of human activities on the nitrogen cycle within a given ecosystem
     3.Knows the potential impact of human activities on the oxygen cycle within a given ecosystem
     4.Understands the role of air pollution in atmospheric warming
     5.Knows that peas and other legumes supply their own nitrogen and do not deplete the soil
  Level IV (Grade 9-12)
   Benchmark 1.Understands how relationships between soil, climate, and plant and animal life affect the distribution of ecosystems (e.g., effects of solar energy and water supply on the nature of plant communities)
    Knowledge/skill statements
     1.Understands the effects of solar energy on the nature of plant communities
     2.Understands the effects of the water supply on the nature of plant communities
     3.Understands that relationships within ecosystems affects the distribution of such ecosystems
   Benchmark 2.Knows ecosystems in terms of their biodiversity and productivity (e.g., the low productivity of deserts and the high productivity of midlatitude forests and tropical forests) and their potential value to all living things (e.g., as a source of oxygen for life forms, as a source of food for indigenous peoples, as a source of raw materials for international trade)
    Knowledge/skill statements
     1.Knows a variety of ecosystems in terms of their biodiversity
     2.Knows a variety of ecosystems in terms of their productivity
     3.Knows a variety of ecosystems in terms of their potential value to all living things
     4.Knows that deserts have a low productivity
     5.Knows that midlatitude forests have a high productivity
     6.Knows that tropical forests have a high productivity
     7.Knows ecosystems that are a source of oxygen for life forms
     8.Knows ecosystems that are a source of food for indigenous peoples
     9.Knows ecosystems that are a source of raw materials for international trade
   Benchmark 3.Knows the effects of biological magnification in ecosystems (e.g., the increase in contaminants in succeeding levels of the food chain and the consequences for different life forms)
    Knowledge/skill statements
     1.Knows that biological magnification in ecosystems involves an increase of contaminants in succeeding levels of the food chain
     2.Knows the consequences of increased contaminants for different life forms in a food chain
   Benchmark 4.Knows the effects of both physical and human changes in ecosystems (e.g., the disruption of energy flows and chemical cycles and the reduction of species diversity, how acid rain resulting from air pollution affects water bodies and forests and how depletion of the atmosphere's ozone layer through the use of chemicals may affect the health of humans)
    Knowledge/skill statements
     1.Knows the effects of physical changes in ecosystems
     2.Knows the effects of human changes in ecosystems
     3.Knows that the disruption of energy flows in an ecosystem reduces species diversity
     4.Knows that the disruption of chemical cycles in an ecosystem reduces species diversity
     5.Knows how acid rain, resulting from air pollution, affects bodies of water
     6.Knows how acid rain, resulting from air pollution, affects the forests
     7.Knows how the depletion of the atmosphere’s ozone layer, through the use of chemicals, may affect the health of humans