Students will use the free resource, Model Ecosystems, provided by McGraw Hill's virtual labs as well as a spreadsheet included in the download to analyze and compare the biodiversity of different ecosystems. This resource would be a good introduction to Simpson's Biodiversity Index, species richness, and the relative density of separate species as well as how they relate within an ecosystem. Students will begin by reading about the different types of ecosystems found in the interactive and completing a drag drop embedded in the document to check for understanding of the reading. Students will then use the data collected from the virtual lab to insert into a spreadsheet and acquire data that will be used to answer post lab questions. This document would be a great lead-in to a biodiversity unit with many questions focused on the role biodiversity has on the health of an ecosystem as well as the impact to biodiversity as conditions within the ecosystem changes.
This resource is editable and contains a Google suits link for an easy copy-to-drive feature.