Internet Hunts
Puzzles & Projects
Wetlands Study Unit
Plants & People
Problem/Project Based Learning
Water & Watershed Study Unit
Bluebirds Project

Ecology Community Status in your State's Ecosystem

"Organisms respond to changes and vagaries in the environment. Organisms, unlike non-living objects, survive because of the ability to respond. Responses take many forms, which we can categorize as morphological, physiological, or behavioral." Basic Ecology - A Guide to the study of ecosystems Wikibooks

1. Read - Threatened, Endangered, & Extinct - by Sanford S. Smith

Watch "Endangered Means There Is Still Time" online slide show

2. Evaluate the biodiversity of your state by assessing the population status of its organisms.

right arrow Make a Semantic Feature Analysis Chart (a.k.a. - Table or Matrix)

Across the first row of the columns (skip the first column)

Enter titles: Common, Threatened, Endangered, Extinct, I've seen it

Down the rows (beginning with the second row) - Enter at least one species of: plants, trees, mammals, insects, birds, covered in this fields, meadows and fencerows study unit. Add a species that is found in your community's fields and meadows, which is not mentioned in this unit.

Place a blue checkmarkcheckmark in the correct column for each species in your state.

Each state has a wildlife agency. They usually provide information on threatened and endangered species. Look for their web site or perhaps they have published a book or pamphlet about local species. Wildlife in Pennsylvania


right arrow Examine the chart - What have you found?

How many of the species are common?

What percentage of the species are threatened?

What is the ratio of common species to endangered species?


right arrow Identify one species that is considered endangered in your state.

What, if anything, should be done to help it survive?


Explore more:

Basic Ecology A Free Online Textbook

The status of American Eagles in your state - a problem based leaning activity

Map and Inventory Trees in your community

Plants and People | Milkweed and Monarch Butterflies | Bluebirds Project


Fields, Meadows, and Fencerows: Habitat / Mammals / Birds / Butterflies & Moths / Trees & Plants / Conclusion

Ecology Vocabulary Exercise | Life Cycles | Bird Facts Table | Evaluate Ecodilemmas

Citizen Scientist - Collect some data | Collecting data Activity doc. /pdf | Outside - In Showcase Project

Bats are our Buddies | Screech Owls activity | Plan a School Habitat Garden Project | Bluebirds Project

Wildflowers info | Milkweeds & Monarch Butterfly Mania | Water and watershed studies | Nature

Internet Hunts / Puzzles and Projects / Problem based Learning / Civics & History / Habitat Garden / Computers / Home

Posted 7/2008 by Cindy O'Hora updated 11/2013

Pennsylvania Science Anchors
S.A.2. Processes, Procedures, and Tools of Scientific Investigations

S.A.3. Systems, Models, and Patterns

Science NetLinks Benchmark 5 - The Living Environment
How living things function and interact. A. Diversity of Life

"One of the most general distinctions among organisms is between plants, which use sunlight to make their own food, and animals, which consume energy-rich foods. Animals and plants have a great variety of body plans and internal structures that contribute to their being able to make or find food and reproduce. All organisms, including the human species, are part of and depend on two main interconnected global food webs."

D. Interdependence of Life - " In all environments freshwater, marine, forest, desert, grassland, mountain, and others organisms with similar needs may compete with one another for resources, including food, space, water, air, and shelter. Two types of organisms may interact with one another in several ways: They may be in a producer/consumer, predator/prey, or parasite/host relationship."

tree icon Save a tree - use a digital answer format - Highlight the text of the title, directions and questions. Copy the text. Paste it in a word processing document. Save the document in your folder. Answer on the word processing document in an easily read, contrasting color or font. (No yellow, avoid artistic fonts like: Symbols, broad font, blackmoor, & dear font fonts). Save frequently as you work. Make Your Own Printed answer sheet

The goal of this web project is to inform people through research while employing higher order thinking skills. This study unit encourages the use of free Internet information resources. Activities develop writing, information literacy, technology and mathematics skills.