Quick summary: Students research the effects of bushfires on a native and invasive species on Kangaroo Island. They will analyse the factors negatively impacting the population size of a native species. They will work together to contrast, compare and ultimately select between a variety of strategies for controlling populations of feral cats.
In partnership with The Conversation, the Beyond the Bushfires series brings the words of scientists who are actively involved in research and science communication into classrooms throughout Australia. Students will explore evidence-based research embedded in the context of real-world practice.
Additional thanks to the Ian Potter Foundation, John T Reid Charitable Trusts and The Myer Foundation, for generously supporting the development of these lessons.
- Students will identify the relationship between an invasive and native species on Kangaroo Island
- Students will consider the factors that might lead to growth or decline in the populations of these species.
21st century skills:
Australian Curriculum Mapping
Year 9 Science
- Ecosystems consist of communities of interdependent organisms and abiotic components of the environment; matter and energy flow through these systems (ACSSU176)
- Values and needs of contemporary society can influence the focus of scientific research (ACSHE228)
Syllabus outcomes: SC5-14LW, SC5-11PW.
General capabilities: Critical and Creative Thinking, ICT Capability
Cross-curriculum priority: Sustainability OI.2, OI.3.
Relevant parts of Year 9 Science achievement standards: Students analyse how biological systems function and respond to external changes with reference to interdependencies, energy transfers and flows of matter. They describe social and technological factors that have influenced scientific developments and predict how future applications of science and technology may affect people’s lives.
This lesson is part of the wider unit of work Beyond the Bushfires – Secondary.
Time required: 55 mins.
Level of teacher scaffolding: Low – Supervision of article reading and worksheet completion. Short facilitated discussion at the end of the exercise.
- Article – The Conversation – Fire-ravaged Kangaroo Island is teeming with feral cats. It’s bad news for this little marsupial
- Laptops or personal computer access
- Print outs of student worksheets – one copy for each student.
Keywords: ecosystem recovery, bushfires, native species, Kangaroo Island, dunnart, cat.
Cool Australia’s curriculum team continually reviews and refines our resources to be in line with changes to the Australian Curriculum.