Ecology Disrupted: Unexpected Consequences Of Human Daily Life On Abiotic and Biotic Ecosystem Components


Download the files below to use offline, or to incorporate into your own lesson planning tools.

Ecology Disrupted: Changes to Habitats lesson plan



Ecology Disrupted: Changes to Habitats investigation booklet




(Time required: about 90 minutes, over two class periods)

In this lesson sequence, students will extend what they have learned about the unexpected consequences of human daily life on abiotic and biotic factors in streams to abiotic and biotic factors of other ecosystems.

1. Discuss ecosystems, abiotic, and biotic factors in the context of Baltimore streams. (5 min)

2. Complete the graphic organizer for Winter Roads Make Salty Streams. (5 min)

3. Watch other Science Bulletins and complete the graphic organizers for each. (50 min)

Students watch additional Science Bulletins videos to learn about how human daily life can affect ecological function, and to pull out the ecological principles.

urban heat island


Urban Heat Island Effect

In cities like Atlanta, the high concentration of buildings, roads, and other artificial surface areas retain heat, making urban environments up to 10° C  (18° F) warmer than rural areas.

4. Discuss findings from the Science Bulletins. (10 min)
bringing stories together main image

Educator Materials

Bringing the Stories Together

How mundane or ordinary aspects of daily life can lead to environmental issues by disrupting ecological function (in this case abiotic factors).

5. Complete and discuss the Final Thoughts section of the Investigation Booklet. (25 min) 

Ask students to complete the Final Thoughts section of the Investigation Booklet, available in the Downloads section on this page.