lee's classroom

(another MPPS global2.vic.edu.au weblog)

Term 2 Science Project


To conclude our science unit on adaptation students will prepare an information display with supporting resources on a desert animal or plant.

Teams will:
• describe the desert environment to which the species is adapted
• describe the structural features and behaviour of the species
• make claims about which are key adaptations that help the species survive.

Present your research on a display board.

  • All in your own words. The language should be impersonal and contain three tier words.
  • Use a font size of at least 16 points for the text on your display board, so that it is easy to read from a few feet away. It’s OK to use slightly smaller fonts for captions on picture and tables
  • The title should be big and easily read from across the room. Choose one that accurately describes your work, but also grabs peoples’ attention.
  • It should contain a least one graph.
  • A picture speaks a thousand words! Use photos or draw diagrams to present non-numerical data, to propose models that explain your claims. As well as creating an annotated drawing to (similar to the one on ‘Camel features’) you’ll be expected to construct a 3D model. This will need to highlight the features and adaptations that are central to your species’s survival in the Australian desert.
  • A Bibliography. At least three sources.
  • A proposal for an experiment to investigate if your claimed structural feature of the animal/plant is an adaptation for surviving in a desert environment. Deciding on what you and your team think you can achieve in the given time, you can either:
  1. propose an investigation
  2. plan the experiment
  3. conduct your experiment and observe, record and share the results in your final display.

A good-quality presentation is:
• well-organised information
• clear, concise communication
• use of evidence and reasoning to support claims
• quality/creative visual aids.

Examples of oral presentations by scientists on adaptations can be found at:

Species to investigate:
• The Australian Mulga (Acacia aneura)
• Old Man Saltbush (Atriplex nummularia)
• The Greater Bilby (Macrotis lagotis)
• Spencer’s Burrowing Frog (Opisthodon spenceri, formerly Limnodynastes spenceri)
• The Thorny Devil (Moloch horridus)
• Budgerigars (Melopsittacus undulatus)
• The Boab tree (Adansonia gregorii)
• Spinifex grass, for example, Triodia wiseana
• The Spinifex Hopping Mouse (Notomys alexis)
• Shield shrimps (Triops australiensis)
• Termites, for example, Nasutitermes triodiae*

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