Grade Levels
6-8 9-12
Authors / Developers
Ecology Explorers Education team; CAP LTER
Time Required
1 class period
Teaching Tips
At the end of the activity it is suggested that students be asked a number of questions re. the plants and their plots. A discussion about why data from different plots might vary and the implications of variation might want to be done as a summative assessment.
About The Science
Activity consists of counting the number of different plants in a desert sampling plot. Additional clarification might be necessary by instructor with regards to plant identification and the difference between dead and dormant plans annual vs. perennial plants.
Pedagogy Annotation
Students should have background knowledge or experience in plant identification. Activity is very basic -- counting different by appearance kind of plants in sample plot. Students need not identify plants using an established key -- can make up their own. Activity as presented appears to be written for the teacher -- students have just a data sheet. Student groupings need to be identified -- per plot of plots etc.
Technical Details/Ease of Use
Students/instructor should have ability to use a vegetation key or make their own vegetation key to identify plants Procedure is general enough to be used at many land-based LTER sites