Unit Information

Level: 7th Grade Life ScienceUnit 6B: Genes and Heredity – Genetics
Standards:Students know sexual reproduction produces offspring that inherit half their genes from each parent (2.b) Students know an inherited trait can be determined by one or more genes (2.c) Students know plant and animal cells contain many thousands of different genes and typically have two copies of every gene. The two copies (or alleles) of the gene may or may not be identical, and one may be dominant in determining the phenotype while the other is recessive (2.d)
Big Idea: Traits, or characteristics, are passed from parent to offspring as genes, coded for by DNA, are recombined during sexual reproduction.
Learning Targets:
  1. I know that half of an offspring’s genes are inherited from their mother, and half from their father. (2.b)
  2. I know that sexual reproduction creates offspring with genes from two parents. (2.b)
  3. I know that genes are the instructions for inherited traits and that one or more genes determine a trait. (2.c)
  4. I know that organisms have thousands of genes and typically have two copies of each. (2.d)
  5. I know that the two copies of the gene in an organism may or may not be identical, and one copy may “dominate” in determining what an organism looks like. (2.d)
Essential Questions:
  1. What role does sexual reproduction play in determining an offspring’s genes. (LT1 & LT2)
  2. How do genes determine traits (use the vocabulary terms gene, allele, genotype, and phenotype)? (LT 3)
  3. An organism has two copies of a gene that are not identical. What determines what the organism looks like? (LT 4 & LT 5)
Key Concepts:1.       The rules of heredity is evidenced in plants, as well as other organisms, as demonstrated by the founding work of Gregor Mendel2.       Genes are the instructions for inherited traits3.       Phenotype is the physical expression of the genotype, which is determined by the combination of alleles4.       Meiosis (sexual reproduction) allows for combination of genes from different cells 5.       Inheritance of alleles happens by chance and cannot be controlledKey Terms:
  1. Heredity
  2. Dominant trait
  3. Recessive trait
  4. Gene
  5. Allele
  6. Phenotype
  7. Genotype
  8. Homologous chromosome
Required Prior Knowledge:
  • Sexual vs. asexual reproduction
  • Standard 2.e: Students know DNA is the genetic material of living organisms and is located in the chromosomes of each cell
Common Misconceptions:§         Genotype and phenotype is the same§         If a person looks more like one parent, they have more of that parent’s genes§         Mitosis and meiosis are the same process, and meiosis can happen in any cell

Theme 2: Energy in Earth’s Systems

Unit 5: Energy in the Atmosphere
Standards:Students know energy can be carried from one place to another by heat flow or by waves, including water, light and sound waves, or by moving objects. (3.a) Student know heat energy is also transferred between objects by radiation (radiation can travel through space). (3.d) Students know the sun is the major source of energy for phenomena on Earth’s surface; it powers winds, ocean currents, and the water cycle. (4.a) Students know convection currents distribute heat in the atmosphere and oceans. (4.d) Students know differences in pressure, heat, air movement, and humidity result in changes of weather. (4.e)
Learning Targets:I know that energy in the atmosphere can be transferred by convection, conduction, and radiation. (3.a) I know that energy is radiated to the Earth by the sun, which causes uneven heating, resulting in wind and ocean currents. (3.d, 4.a) I know that differences in pressure, heat, air movement, and humidity result in changes of weather. (4.e)
Essential Questions:1.       How are weather and climate related?2.       What are the factors that affect climate?
Big Idea: The absorption and transfer of energy in the atmosphere causes weather and may affect climate.
Key Concepts:§          Earth’s atmosphere absorbs solar energy and transfers it around Earth’s surface by radiation, conduction, and convection.§          Uneven heating of the atmosphere leads to:§          Global and local winds§          Changes in the water cycle§          Movement of air masses§          Ocean currents§          Weather is the atmospheric conditions that occur on a daily basis, whereas climate is the average weather conditions over a period of time.§          There are six main factors that affect climateKey Terms:1.       Air pressure2.       Wind3.       Weather4.       Climate5.       Humidity6.       Air mass7.       Front8.       Greenhouse effect
Common Misconceptions:§          Humid air is denser than dry air; in fact, humid air is less dense and rises.§          Climate and weather are the same thing.§          During the summer the Earth is closer to the sun than in the winter.Prior Knowledge:§          Radiation, conduction and convection§          Density