Sat Jan 15, 2011 10:22 PM
Thourough description of stresses to ecosystem
This science object looks at both natural and human causes to the damage and stress on coral reef ecosystems. This information is presented in list form (4 topics for natural causes and 8 topics for human causes) and concludes with information on endangered species and ideas for stewardship. This object has a wealth of information with a good bit of review questions and can supplement any discussions or units on humans interacting with their environment. Very few interactive components, though.
Sat Jan 15, 2011 9:12 PM
Solid Ecology Information
This science object covers many of the basic ecology concepts including food chains/webs/pyramids, transfer of energy/trophic levels, cycles, succession, and symbiosis. The examples as they relate to coral reefs are very clear. There are interactives that assist in the understanding and I found the one where you can manipulate populations at various points of a food pyramid to see the effect on other predator and prey populations potentially beneficial for the classroom. Great use of the coral reef subject to covers these ecology topics.
Sat Jan 15, 2011 4:12 PM
Good, but less of the stuff I like in Sci Objects
First, I do want to state that I think using coral reefs to integrate and discuss many earth science and physical science concepts as abiotic factors is a good way of presenting this information. I think these are important concepts for a teacher of life sciences (at all school levels) to know. This object includes short overviews of sunlight, ocean temperature, pH, salinity, dissolved oxygen levels, turbidity, pressure, as well as the very basics of waves, tides, and currents. However, for such a variety of topics, there appeared to be fewer questions asked along the way as review and fewer interactives, which are the components that usually make me feel I’m not just reading a textbook online. This is the first science object that gave me more of that feeling. The only interactive is at the end and is basically a visual review question with minimal manipulatives where you have to adjust some of the abiotic factors to create optimal coral reef growth. Again, the info is varied an