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Adapting to the World: Teacher's Guide

Grade Level: 6-8 Curriculum Focus: Animals Lesson Duration: Three class periods

Program Description

Oceans: Cradle of Life--Explores how organisms developed in Earth's oceans. The Bloom of Plants--Examines how plants survive and reproduce. Insects: Master Adapters--Examines how insects have adapted to survive for billions of years. The Wild Side of Dogs--Explores how dogs evolved from wolves.

Onscreen Questions

Segments 1 & 2, Oceans: Cradle of Life and The Bloom of Plants (9 min.) · · · · How have oceans promoted life on planet Earth? How are a plant's activities similar to those of animals? How are adaptations important for survival? What environmental challenges cause animals to develop adaptations?

Segments 3 & 4, Insects: Master Adapters and The Wild Side of Dogs (39 min.)

Lesson Plan

Student Objectives

· · · Understand why humans domesticated wolves. Learn how dogs have been bred and trained to help humans. Write a report about how dogs perform a particular task. Identify learned and inherited behaviors.

Materials

· · Adapting to the World video and VCR, or DVD and DVD player Computer with Internet access

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·

Print resources about the history of dogs, service dogs, police dogs, and other dogs that help people

Procedures

1. Review with the class how dogs evolved from wolves. What were some reasons that humans domesticated wolves? Discuss examples from the video of early ways that dogs were domesticated. (Maremmas were domesticated as herders; basset hounds were trained to be hunters.) Ask students to think of other ways in which dogs have helped humans throughout history. 2. Ask students to brainstorm ways in which dogs are trained to help people today. Record their responses. Examples include: · · · · · · · · · · · · · Guide dogs for the blind Hearing dogs for the deaf Service dogs for the physically disabled Police dogs that detect drugs or bombs Sled dogs that provide transport in Arctic regions Guard dogs that protect property Army Scout dogs that warn of danger Detect termites in buildings Detect fire accelerants Comfort hospital patients Locate victims at disaster sites Herd sheep and cattle Detect certain cancers in humans

3. Ask students to choose one way that dogs help humans. Challenge them to learn more about how dogs perform this task. Have them consider these questions: How do the dogs help humans? How are dogs trained to perform this task? What kinds of breeds are used for this task? What qualities make this breed (or dogs in general) suited for this task? 4. Have students research the training they have chosen using print and Web resources. The following Web sites are a good starting point: · · · Extraordinary Dogs: Stories

http://www.thirteen.org/extraordinarydogs/stories.html

Guide Dogs of America: Training

http://www.guidedogsofamerica.org/training.html

Guide Dogs for the Blind, Inc. (see "Guide Dog Training")

http://www.guidedogs.com/

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· ·

Dogs for the Deaf, Inc. (see "Our Dogs")

http://www.dogsforthedeaf.org/

Assistance Dogs International Inc. (see links about guide dogs, hearing dogs, and service dogs)

http://www.adionline.org/

· · ·

Sled Dogs: An Alaskan Epic

http://www.pbs.org/wnet/nature/sleddogs/

International Association of Assistance Dog Partners (see "Educate")

http://www.iaadp.org/

Yahooligans: Service Dog Links

http://www.yahooligans.com/science_and_nature/living_things/animals/mammals/dogs/Service_Dogs/

5. When students have completed their initial research, ask them to summarize their findings in a one-page report. 6. Have students choose a partner. Ask them to share their report with their partner and answer any questions. Then have each student summarize their partner's report for the class, including at least three interesting facts.

Assessment

Use the following three-point rubric to evaluate students' work during this lesson. · 3 points: Students were highly engaged in class discussions; produced a complete report, including all of the requested information; accurately summarized their partner's report and cited three interesting, relevant points. 2 points: Students participated in class discussions; produced an adequate report, including most of the requested information; satisfactorily summarized their partner's report and cited two relevant points. 1 point: Students participated minimally in class discussions; created an incomplete report with little or none of the requested information; were not able to summarize their partner's report or recall any interesting, relevant points.

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Vocabulary

breed Definition: A group of animals or plants presumably related by descent from common ancestors Context: Some dog breeds are well suited for specialized tasks. domesticate Definition: To adapt to living with humans and serving their needs; to train an animal to live with and serve humans Context: Humans have domesticated dogs to serve in many ways, including hunting, herding, protecting, and assisting the disabled.

Published by Discovery Education. © 2005. All rights reserved.

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guide dog Definition: A dog that helps the blind and the visually impaired Context: One important role for a guide dog is to help his blind partner to walk safely and avoid obstacles and oncoming traffic. hearing dog Definition: A dog that assists the deaf and hard of hearing Context: Hearing dogs are trained to alert people to a ringing telephone, fire alarm, or other household sounds. police dog Definition: A dog trained to help police Context: Some police dogs are trained to sniff out illegal drugs, while others are trained to detect bombs. service dog Definition: A dog that helps people with physical disabilities Context: Service dogs can help their disabled partners with many everyday tasks, such as opening doors and turning on lights. sled dog Definition: A dog trained to pull a sled Context: Sled dogs pull mushers in the annual Iditarod Race in Alaska.

Academic Standards

National Academy of Sciences The National Science Education Standards provide guidelines for teaching science as well as a coherent vision of what it means to be scientifically literate for students in grades K-12. To view the standards, visit http://books.nap.edu. This lesson plan addresses the following science standards: · Life Science: Regulation and behavior; Diversity and adaptations of organisms

Mid-continent Research for Education and Learning (McREL) McREL's Content Knowledge: A Compendium of Standards and Benchmarks for K-12 Education addresses 14 content areas. To view the standards and benchmarks, visit http://www.mcrel.org/. This lesson plan addresses the following national standards: · · Science--Life Sciences: Understands biological evolution and the diversity of life Language Arts--Viewing: Uses viewing skills and strategies to understand and interpret visual media

Published by Discovery Education. © 2005. All rights reserved.

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Support Materials

Develop custom worksheets, educational puzzles, online quizzes, and more with the free teaching tools offered on the Discoveryschool.com Web site. Create and print support materials, or save them to a Custom Classroom account for future use. To learn more, visit

· http://school.discovery.com/teachingtools/teachingtools.html

DVD Content

This program is available in an interactive DVD format. The following information and activities are specific to the DVD version.

How To Use the DVD

The DVD starting screen has the following options: Play Video--This plays the video from start to finish. There are no programmed stops, except by using a remote control. With a computer, depending on the particular software player, a pause button is included with the other video controls. Video Index--Here the video is divided into four parts (see below), indicated by video thumbnail icons. Watching all parts in sequence is similar to watching the video from start to finish. Brief descriptions and total running times are noted for each part. To play a particular segment, press Enter on the remote for TV playback; on a computer, click once to highlight a thumbnail and read the accompanying text description and click again to start the video. Curriculum Units--These are specially edited video segments pulled from different sections of the video (see below). These nonlinear segments align with key ideas in the unit of instruction. They include onscreen pre- and post-viewing questions, reproduced below in this Teacher's Guide. Total running times for these segments are noted. To play a particular segment, press Enter on the TV remote or click once on the Curriculum Unit title on a computer. Standards Link--Selecting this option displays a single screen that lists the national academic standards the video addresses. Teacher Resources--This screen gives the technical support number and Web site address.

Video Index

I. Oceans: Cradle of Life (4 min.) Scientists believe that all life on this planet began as ocean-dwelling, unicellular organisms. Studying fossils provides evidence about the prehistoric organisms that lived in the oceans. II. The Bloom of Plants (5 min.) Time-lapse footage of plant life shows how plants can be aggressive when it comes to their own growth and survival.

Published by Discovery Education. © 2005. All rights reserved.

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III. Insects: Master Adapters (3 min.) With simple adaptations over the course of millions of years, insects have become masters of survival. Learn about the diverse and resilient world of insects. IV. The Wild Side of Dogs (36 min.) Though they now are bred and trained for specific functions, domestic dogs are what they have always been--wild. Take a closer look at the evolution and history of our four-legged friends.

Curriculum Units

1. Earth's Earliest Cells Pre-viewing question Q: How do you think early organisms could breathe without oxygen? A: Answers will vary. Post-viewing question Q: What are unicellular organisms? A: Unicellular organisms are organisms made up of one cell. They are the simplest forms of life. 2. Learning About Early Life Pre-viewing question Q: What kinds of fossils have you seen and where have you seen them? A: Answers will vary. Post-viewing question Q: What are fossils? A: Fossils are remnants of organisms that have been preserved in rock or other materials. Scientists study fossils to learn about early life on Earth. 3. How Plants Grow Pre-viewing question Q: What kinds of plants seem to grow best in your neighborhood and why? A: Answers will vary. Post-viewing question Q: What is tropism? A: Tropism is the growth response toward or away from a stimulus. Plant tropisms include touch, light, gravity, or water. A plant growing toward a stimulus shows a positive tropism. A plant growing away from a stimulus shows a negative tropism. 4. Pollination Pre-viewing question Q: What do seeds need so they can grow? A: Light, water, and space

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Post-viewing question Q: What is pollination? A: Pollination is the joining of the nuclear material in a plant's sperm cell and egg cell. Pollination takes place when a male plant transfers its sperm, or pollen, to the egg-producing part of a female plant. 5. The World of Insects Pre-viewing question Q: Why do you think giant insects became smaller over time? A: Answers will vary. Post-viewing question Q: What are some common attributes of all insects? A: Insects are arthropods: They have three body sections, six legs, one pair of antennae, and one or two pairs of wings. They are invertebrates, with exoskeletons on the outside of their bodies. 6. Domesticating the Wolf Pre-viewing question Q: When do dogs appear to be most like wild animals? A: Answers will vary. Post-viewing question Q: How do you think wolves became domesticated? A: Answers will vary. 7. Global Domestication Pre-viewing question Q: Why do humans domesticate animals? A: Answers will vary. Post-viewing question Q: What are some things that dogs are used for? A: Dogs can be pets, guard dogs, or helpers for people who use wheelchairs or are visually impaired. 8. Dogs, Coyotes, and Wolves Pre-viewing question Q: How do dogs, wolves, and coyotes resemble one another? A: Answers will vary. Post-viewing question Q: What is imprinting? A: Imprinting refers to a newborn animal instinctively being attracted to the first animal it sees-- either of its own kind or a substitute identified as the parent.

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9. Relatives of the Dog Pre-viewing question Q: In what ways are foxes similar to wolves and dogs? A: Answers will vary. Post-viewing question Q: Why can dogs digest fruits and vegetables? A: Dogs are carnivores, but an adaptation allows them to digest vegetables and fruit. They have a grinding surface behind the cutting edge of their molars that allows them to chew fruits and vegetables. 10. Canid Communities Pre-viewing question Q: How do dogs communicate with one another? A: Answers will vary. Post-viewing question Q: What were some domestic breeds originally bred to do? A: Poodles were bred as duck hunters. Basset hounds were bred with long ears that help them pick up the scent of wild game from the ground and move it to their noses. Irish wolfhounds and Afghan hounds were bred to hunt prey such as wolves and rabbits. 11. Working Dogs Pre-viewing question Q: What is the most amazing thing you've seen a dog do? A: Answers will vary. Post-viewing question Q: Of the dog jobs shown, which do you think would be the most difficult? A: Answers will vary.

Published by Discovery Education. © 2005. All rights reserved.

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