Students looking for life in the pond at SOES

Aquatic Ecology

Overall Goal
Through a hands on inquiry based exploration of our pond, students explore the great biodiversity of this water ecosystem and better understand the interconnections of living things

Grade 6 Curriculum Connections
Science and technology - Understanding life systems - Biodiversity
  • assess human impacts on biodiversity, and identify ways of preserving biodiversity
  • investigate the characteristics of living things, and classify diverse organisms according to specific characteristic
  • demonstrate an understanding of biodiversity, its contributions to the stability of natural systems, and it benefits to humans
  • Connect to Big Ideas (Fairness & Equity, Systems, Community, Diversity, Interdependence, Ability to Make a Difference, Equilibrium)

Program Description

Wetlands, ponds, rivers and lakes are important ecosystems that exist in a variety of locations from the city to deep into the forest. These ecosystems are essential and often threatened by human impact. We give students the opportunity to learn more about these fascinating ecosystems by discovering and identifying the biodiversity in our pond and sometimes lake and streams at SOES. With a strong connection to STEM, students learn appropriate scientific language and inquiry.

Groups have the opportunity to experience a lesson on aquatic life and how to be responsible when collecting samples from the pond. Students throw on their boots, grab a net and get their hands dirty collecting different organisms. While collecting samples, there is time to examine and identify different species that live in our pond ecosystem. There is lots of excitement as students share their discoveries.

Success Criteria/Learning Goals

  1. Students will describe human impacts on biodiversity, and identify ways of preserving biodiversity.
  2. Students will identify the characteristics of living things, and classify organisms according to specific characteristic.
  3. Students will demonstrate an understanding of biodiversity, its contributions to the stability of natural systems, and it benefits to humans.

Pre-Trip Activity
This short presentation could act as a minds on activity that introduces the basics of a Pond Food Chain to your students to have them start to think about the rich biodiversity in a pond.
Next Step Environmental Action
It would be wonderful to get involved in a waterway clean up near your school either on your own or with the help of Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup which is an organization that brings people together to cleanup shorelines - check out the website for more information.
Resources

This activity can be done in the fall and springtime.