Now that we have a plan to virtually travel to Yellowstone, we set our sights on the ecosystem of the park. For today’s lesson, students will learn about how the reintroduction of wolves nearly 75 years after their extinction appears to have led to profound changes to both the biotic (living) and abiotic (not living) factors in the ecosystem of the park.
The video (below) features images about the wolves and other organisms in Yellowstone, with George Monbiot narrating. The narration is actually a segment from a longer TED talk by Mr. Monbiot.
During the video, make a list in your Google Doc (from yesterday) of the biotic and abiotic factors you see in Yellowstone. After watching the video, write down the claim being made by the narrator in their Google Doc, and then make of list of evidence used to support the claim. Next, students are must read an article titled Has The Reintroduction Of Wolves Really Saved Yellowstone? published on March 14, 2014 by Emily Gertz in Popular Science. After reading the article, write the counterclaim in your Google Doc and include evidence from the article to refute the original claim.
Finally, create a list of information you would need to determine whether or not wolves have impacted the ecosystem of Yellowstone National Park.
After completing the lesson, continue working on your virtual road trip plans from yesterday’s lesson. Be sure to share the Google Doc with Mr. Swart!