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Gr. 9 – Science Applied – Strand 2

Strand 2 – Biology: Sustainable Ecosystems and Human Activity

Grade 9 (Applied) Overall Expectations:

1 – Analyse the impact of human activity on terrestrial or aquatic ecosystems, and assess the effectiveness of selected initiatives related to environmental sustainability.

2 – Investigate some factors related to human activity that affect terrestrial or aquatic ecosystems, and describe the consequences that these factors have for the sustainability of these ecosystems.

  • Use appropriate terminology related to sustainable ecosystems and human activity, including, but not limited to: biodiversity, biotic, ecosystem, equilibrium, species diversity, sustainability, and watershed [C].
  • Compile and graph qualitative and quantitative data on organisms within an undisturbed or disturbed ecosystem (terrestrial or aquatic) (e.g., nematode and earthworm populations in soil or compost; bird populations during migration or winter feeding; tadpole and mosquito larvae populations in a local pond) [PR, AI, C].

3 – Demonstrate an understanding of characteristics of terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems, the interdependence within and between ecosystems, and the impact humans have on the sustainability of these ecosystems..

  • Identify the major limiting factors of ecosystems (e.g., nutrients, space, water, predators), and explain how these factors are related to the carrying capacity of an ecosystem (e.g., how an increase in the moose population in an ecosystem affects the wolf population in the same ecosystem).
  • Identify some factors related to human activity that have an impact on ecosystems (e.g., the use of fertilizers and pesticides; altered shorelines; organic and conventional farming; urban sprawl), and explain how these factors affect the equilibrium and survival of populations in terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems (e.g., fertilizers change the fertility of soil, affecting what types of plants can grow in it; pesticides leach into water systems, affecting water quality and aquatic life; shoreline development affects the types of aquatic life and terrestrial vegetation that can live by lake shores or river banks; urban sprawl wipes out fields and woods, destroying wildlife habitats).