School Improvement in Maryland

Using the State Curriculum: Science, Grade 4

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Life:

Science:

State Curriculum Toolkit

Tools aligned to State Curriculum indicators and/or objectives.

  • Clarification of Indicator and/or Objective
    Explanation and/or examples of indicator and/or objective
  • Introduction for Standard or Indicator
  • Lesson Seeds
    Ideas/seeds for an objective-aligned activity
  • Public Release Items
    Actual MSA items and annotated student responses as appropriate

Standard 3.0 Life Science

The students will use scientific skills and processes to explain the dynamic nature of living things, their interactions, and the results from the interactions that occur over time.

Topic

A. Diversity of Life

Indicator

  • 1. Explain how animals and plants can be grouped according to observable features.
Objectives
  1. Observe and compile a list of a variety of animals or plants in both familiar and unfamiliar environments.
  2. Classify a variety of animals and plants according to their observable features and provide reasons for placing them into different groups.
  3. Given a list of additional animals or plants, decide whether or not they could be placed within the established groups or does a new group have to be added.
  4. Describe what classifying tells us about the relatedness among the animals or plants placed within any group.

Topic

C. Genetics

Indicator

  • 1. Explain that in order for offspring to resemble their parents, there must be a reliable way to transfer information from one generation to the next.
Objectives
  1. Describe traits found in animals and plants, such as eye color, height, leaf shape, seed type that are passed from one generation to another
  2. Explain that some likenesses between parents and offspring are inherited (such as eye color in humans, nest building in birds, or flower color in plants) and other likenesses are learned (such as language in humans )
  3. Raise questions based on observations of a variety of parent and offspring likenesses and differences, such as "Why don't all the puppies have the same traits, such as eye color and size as their parents?" or "How do traits get transferred?"
  4. Develop a reasonable explanation to support the idea that information is passed from parent to offspring.

Topic

Indicator

  • 1. Explain that individuals of the same kind differ in their characteristics, and sometimes the differences give individuals an advantage in surviving and reproducing.
Objectives
  1. Describe ways in which organisms in one habitat differ from those in another habitat and consider how these differences help them survive and reproduce.
  2. Explain that the characteristics of an organism affect its ability to survive and reproduce.
  3. Examine individuals in a group of the same kind of animals or plants to identify differences in characteristics, such as hearing ability in rabbits or keenness of vision in hawks that might give those individuals an advantage in surviving and reproducing.
  4. Examine and compare fossils to one another and to living organisms as evidence that some individuals survive and reproduce.

Topic

E. Flow of Matter and Energy

Indicator

  • 1. Recognize food as the source of materials that all living things need to grow and survive.
Objectives
  1. Classify the things that people and animals take into their bodies as food or not food.
  2. Describe what happens to food in plants and animals.
    • Contributes to growth
    • Supports repair
    • Provides energy
    • Is stored for future use
    • Is eliminated
  3. Identify the things that are essential for plants to grow and survive.

Topic

F. Ecology

Indicator

  • 1. Explain ways that individuals and groups of organisms interact with each other and their environment.
Objectives
  1. Identify and describe the interactions of organisms present in a habitat.
    • Competition for space, food, and water
    • Beneficial interactions: nesting, pollination, seed dispersal, oysters filtering as in the Chesapeake Bay, etc.
    • Roles within food chains and webs: scavengers, decomposers, producers, consumers.
  2. Explain that changes in an organism's habitat are sometimes beneficial to it and sometimes harmful.

Note: Highlighting identifies assessment limits. All highlighted Indicators will be tested on the Grades 5 and 8 MSA. The highlighted Objectives under each highlighted Indicator identify the limit to which MSA items can be written. Although all content standards are tested on MSA, not all Indicators and Objectives are tested. Objectives that are not highlighted will not be tested on MSA, however are an integral part of Instruction.

January 2008