Activity Introduction

fossil-shell-heroQuick summary: Students investigate the evidence for evolution. Students work in groups to research one of five forms of evolutionary evidence and to create a presentation on this evidence to share with the class. Each group is also asked to create a short quiz on their topic; all quizzes can then be compiled and completed following the presentations.

Learning goals:

  • Students recognise some of the different forms of evolutionary evidence, including fossils, comparative anatomy, DNA and protein structures, distribution of species, and embryology.

21st century skills:

evolution evidence skills

Australian Curriculum Mapping

Content description:

Year 10 Science

  • The theory of evolution by natural selection explains the diversity of living things and is supported by a range of scientific evidence (ACSSU185)
  • The transmission of heritable characteristics from one generation to the next involves DNA and genes (ACSSU184)
  • Communicate scientific ideas and information for a particular purpose, including constructing evidence-based arguments and using appropriate scientific language, conventions and representations (ACSIS208)

Syllabus OutcomesSC5-9WS, SC5-14LW.

General capabilities: Critical and creative thinking.

Cross-curriculum priority: Sustainability OI.2.

Relevant parts of Year 10 Science achievement standards: Students explain the processes that underpin heredity and evolution. Students analyse how the models and theories they use have developed over time and discuss the factors that prompted their review.

Topic: Evolution.

Time required: 60 mins.

Level of teacher scaffolding: Low – oversee activity.

Resources required: Internet access, presentation program (such as Powerpoint or Prezi). Evidence for evolution factsheet. Natural selection factsheet. Student Worksheet – one copy per student OR computers/tablets to access the online worksheet.

Digital technology opportunities: Digital sharing capabilities.

Homework and extension opportunities: Includes opportunities for extension.

Keywords: Evolution, evidence, fossils, comparative anatomy, DNA, protein structures, distribution of species, embryology.

Cool Australia’s curriculum team continually reviews and refines our resources to be in line with changes to the Australian Curriculum.

Worksheets

Teacher Worksheet

DNA-heroTeacher preparation

Overarching learning goal: By participating in this activity students will recognise some of the different forms of evolutionary evidence, including fossils, comparative anatomy, DNA and protein structures, distribution of species, and embryology.

Teacher content information:

Evolution: It's a Thing - Crash Course Biology #20 - (http://youtu.be/P3GagfbA2vo)

Teaching sequence

5 minutes - Part A: Different types evidence for evolution - Class discussion.
20 minutes - Part B. Investigate the evidence for evolution - Research and presentation creation.
15 minutes - Part B. Investigate the evidence for evolution - Sharing presentations.
15 minutes - Part B. Investigate the evidence for evolution - Completing quiz and sharing answers.
5 minutes - Reflection.

Work through this resource material in the following sequence:

Preparation: Prior to commencing this activity, ask students to watch the clip above (also available on the Student Worksheet) and to answer the asso

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Student Worksheet

Thought starter: Is natural selection a process or mechanism of evolution?

Part A: Different types evidence for evolution

Watch this clip, read this factsheet (Evidence for evolution factsheet) and answer the following questions:

Evolution: It's a Thing - Crash Course Biology #20 - (http://youtu.be/P3GagfbA2vo)

Describe the different types of evidence for evolution discussed in the clip:

1.

2.

3.

4.

5.

Part B: Investigate the evidence for evolution

The evidence our group is investigating:

Each group is to research their category and should create a four-slide Prezi or Powerpoint presentation describing the following:

1. A description of the evidence for evolution you are looking at:

2. How scientists use this evidence to support the theory of evolution:

3. Any interesting facts, examples or controversies about this type of evidence:

You may find these factsheets useful to your research:

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