The Effect of Tides and Elevation on Wetland Plant Communities
5E For This Lesson Plan
This activity captures the students' attention, stimulates their thinking, and helps them to access prior knowledge.
By reading a short article, students will learn about what areas are considered a wetland and about some basic characteristics of wetland plants. Through small group brainstorming and class discussions, students will begin thinking about how wetland plants could be affected by tides.
In this section students are given time to think, plan, investigate, collect and organize information.
Using elevation data of a tidal freshwater marsh, students will create a topographic profile of one section of the marsh. Using tidal data for a tidal freshwater marsh, students will determine the relative amount of time that different sections of the marsh are inundated with water. Using descriptions of various wetland plants, students will determine at which elevation level(s) these plants would establish communities within a tidal marsh.
Students are now involved in an analysis of their own explorations. Their understanding is clarified and modified because of the reflective nature of the activities.
Students will clearly communicate in writing what they have learned about the effect of tides and water level on wetland plant communities. Through a slide show, students will see actual photographs of plants in a tidal freshwater marsh, with a focus on their location in the marsh relative to elevation and water inundation.
This section gives students an opportunity to expand and solidify their understanding of the concepts and to apply them in a real-world context.
Using tidal data, students will compare the tidal range of two geographic locations. Students will compare a tidal freshwater marsh and a peatland in regard to how hydrology affects the distribution of plant communities in the two wetlands.
This performance-based activity helps students to connect all of the pieces of information involved in these lessons.
The students understanding of the concepts and topics explored during the lesson will be assessed.