Analyzing Darwin's Finches- Evolution Graphing Activity

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Science Lessons That Rock
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Grade Levels
8th - 11th
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Pages
16 pages
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Description

How do we know Darwin was right about evolution via natural selection? In this activity students will read/learn about Peter and Rosemary Grant, a couple from Princeton University who traveled to the Galapagos to conduct research. Students will learn what happened to the finch population on Daphne Major following a severe drought, and again following an El Nino. Students will graph data from the Grant's research and answer questions.

This is a great activity to include with the HHMI video clip found here.

If you enjoyed this lesson, check out my other evolution lessons!

Galapagos Tortoises- Speciation activity

Analyzing Darwin's Finches graphing activity

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Evolution Bundle

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Total Pages
16 pages
Answer Key
Included
Teaching Duration
50 minutes
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Standards

to see state-specific standards (only available in the US).
NGSSHS-LS4-3
Apply concepts of statistics and probability to support explanations that organisms with an advantageous heritable trait tend to increase in proportion to organisms lacking this trait. Emphasis is on analyzing shifts in numerical distribution of traits and using these shifts as evidence to support explanations. Assessment is limited to basic statistical and graphical analysis. Assessment does not include allele frequency calculations.
NGSSHS-LS4-4
Construct an explanation based on evidence for how natural selection leads to adaptation of populations. Emphasis is on using data to provide evidence for how specific biotic and abiotic differences in ecosystems (such as ranges of seasonal temperature, long-term climate change, acidity, light, geographic barriers, or evolution of other organisms) contribute to a change in gene frequency over time, leading to adaptation of populations.
NGSSMS-LS4-4
Construct an explanation based on evidence that describes how genetic variations of traits in a population increase some individuals’ probability of surviving and reproducing in a specific environment. Emphasis is on using simple probability statements and proportional reasoning to construct explanations.
NGSSHS-LS4-5
Evaluate the evidence supporting claims that changes in environmental conditions may result in (1) increases in the number of individuals of some species, (2) the emergence of new species over time, and (3) the extinction of other species. Emphasis is on determining cause and effect relationships for how changes to the environment such as deforestation, fishing, application of fertilizers, drought, flood, and the rate of change of the environment affect distribution or disappearance of traits in species.

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