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3rd Grade

Bryan Obsorn Nature Area (BONA) Structures of Life Field Trip

Audience:  3rd Graders

FOSS Structures of Life Course Module Summary

Human life is unique, as far as we can tell, because humans have the capacity to design, plan, use history, imagine nonexistent objects, and devise systems of laws and codes of behavior.  We have power unknown in other life forms.  But we still share the most fundamental requirements with all other life-forms - nourishment, water, air, space, and suitable environment.  Students must understand these facts so that they are prepared to assume responsibility for the well-being of the system of life on Earth. 

The FOSS Structures of Life Module consists of four investigations dealing with big ideas in life science - plants and animals are organisms and exhibit a variety of strategies for life, organisms are complex and have a vareity of observable structures and behaviors, organisms have varied but predictable life cycles and reproduce their own kind, and individual organisms have variations in their traits that may provide an advantage in surviving in the environment.  Students observe, compare, categorize, and care for a selection of organisms.  Students engage in science and engineering practices to investigate structures and behaviors of the organisms and learn how some of the structures function in growth and survival.  Students look at the interactions between organisms of the same kind, among organisms of different kinds, and between the environment and populations over time.


BONA Outdoor Education Summary

The BONA is an engineered ecosystem consisting of a number of model biological communities and is equipped with data gathering systems such as temperature and dissolved oxygen probes in aquatic habitats, multiple weather stations and wildlife cameras.  Students are able to access information remotely or they can experience and explore, first hand, the complexity of life and how organisms possess observable structures and behaviors aimed at survival, and where they can investigate a great variety of life cycles, reproduction and how species interact with one another and their environment as well as the geological processes.  At the BONA, teachers and their students will apply and expand upon what they have learned in their classroom in a natural setting.  The following three lessons are outdoor based investigations and activities designed to be natural extensions of the FOSS based curriculum that students are doing in their classrooms.  The FOSS investigations are:  

  1. Origin of Seeds
  2. Growing Further
  3. Meet the Crayfish

This field trip will have students conduct a flower study, describing and comparing flower properties, while investigating plant structures and seed dispersal.  They will participate in ongoing maintenance by helping with weed removal, seeing various plant structures, and discovering what makes a "good" invasive species.  Finally, students will visit the pond where they will characterize the habitat, observe crayfish in their natural habitat, identify adaptations, and describe the food web.