Reflection: Connection to Prior Knowledge Cladistics - Section 4: Working Together


When developing this lesson, I made a couple of assumptions that ended up creating some confusion. When students were asked to create the table and determine those shared traits, I incorrectly assumed that the students would know that given the organisms presented, only the humans would have an opposable thumb, and that my idea of "monkey" would be the same as theirs. 

Although I was able to clear this up, this assumption caused several table groups to veer into a conversation of just what it means to have an opposable thumb, and which organisms have one. I would agree that this is an important conversation, and I am glad that the students had it as it gave them practice in engaging in academic discussions, but it also took some of the focus away from the actual lesson.

In future presentations of the lesson, it will be important to clarify the opposable thumb issue before students get to work in their partnerships.

  Assumptions Can Lead You Astray
  Connection to Prior Knowledge: Assumptions Can Lead You Astray
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Unit 8: Evolution
Lesson 12 of 17

Objective: SWBAT infer evolutionary relationships using a cladogram

Big Idea: Derived characteristics in organisms may be used to determine evolutionary relationships

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14 teachers like this lesson
Science, Evolution, Genetics, fossil record (Evolution), natural selection (Evolution), Cladogram, fossils, genetic drift, cladistics, mutations, embryology
  50 minutes
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