A Web Quest created by:
Andrew S. Basler
University of Tennessee at Chattanooga
Introduction | Task | Process | Evaluation | Conclusion | Teachers | Credits
In the IMAX movie Wild Australia, the following statement is made: "Every living thing must be tough, and economical, and ingenious in order for it to survive." Each animal has unique adaptations that allow it to survive in a certain niche of a specific environment.
You will be broken up into five different groups. Each group will pick an Australian Animal to research on the internet. The research will be focused on the unique adaptations of the animal that allow it to survive in its niche. After you have completed your research, you will present your findings to the class in an 8 minute presentation.
The first step as a group is to decide which animal you most want to research. The five animals are as follows: Platypus, Wombat, Red Kangaroo, Koala, and Emu.
After you select your animal, use the following links to research it. In addition to these links, you may also want to use an internet search engine to do your own research.
Australian Animal Page
Red Kangaroo Page
Remember that your presentation should be based on the animal's unique characteristics. You should also identify the niche of the animal, and the specific Australian environment that it lives in.
In order to understand a niche, you must understand the competition with other species and threats to your animal. Be sure to cover those topics in your presentation as well as the adaptations to survive.
Remember that your presentation needs to be 8 minutes long, and every member of the group must have a part.
You will often find links to other websites in your research. It may help to explore those links as well.
You need to make a visual aid for your class presentation. It could be a poster board, power point, a model habitat, etc.
Your group presentation will be evaluated based on the following rubric:
Oral Presentation Rubric
|Oral Presentation Rubric||Possible Points||Self-Assessment||Teacher Assessment|
|Provided depth in coverage of topic. Clearly covered the niche, environment and adaptations of assigned animals.||50
|Presentation was well planned and coherent. (Evidence of rehearsal)||10
|Thoroughly answered all questions||10|
|Visual Aid (helpful, neat)||10
|Stayed within the time limit. (8 minutes)||10|
|Communication Skills (eye contact, posture, clear voice, appropriate volume, transitions between speakers smooth, and all members presented)||10
|Total Possible Points||
Note that half of your grade is on the depth of research into the niche, environment and adaptations of your animal.
Australia's unique animals are a result of Australia's unique environments. In harsh environments, animals will adapt to a specific niche where they can survive. All five of the researched animals are good examples of this adaptation.
Grade Band 6 - 8 Life Sciences
Tennessee Curriculum Standards:
6th Grade - 2.2 Examine the competitive relationships among organisms within an ecosystem.
5.1 Understand how organisms are adapted for surviving in certain environments.
8th Grade - spi 1 - Identify similarities and differences among various organisms.
Purpose: To promote an understanding of an organism's niche and environment. To promote an understanding of Australian geography and its unique environments. To teach internet research skills through the use of links and search engines. To promote class presentation skills. To reinforce learning through oral presentation.
Preceding and Ensuing Instruction: The teacher should first show the IMAX movie Wild Australia - The Edge (35 mins) available at www.amazon.com. After the class viewing, the teacher is responsible for creating 5 groups and overseeing the assignment of animals to the groups. The teacher should also be able to assist in any research questions that the students may have.
Tennessee Department of Education. (n.d.) Curriculum Frameworks. Retrieved September 29, 2003, from http://www.state.tn.us/education/ci/cistandards.htm
Heliograph. (2002).Wild Australia - The Edge [DVD]. Burbank, CA: Slingshot Entertainment
Google. (2003). Search Engine. Retrieved October 23, 2003, from http://google.com
Australian Animals. (2003). Animal Index. Retrieved October 23, 2003, from home.mira.net/~areadman/aussie.htm
Australian Platypus Conservancy. (2003). The Platypus, A Very Special Australian. Retrieved October 23, 2003, from www.totalretail.com/platypus
The Big Zoo. (2003). Red Kangaroo. Retrieved October 23, 2003, from www.thebigzoo.com/Animals/Red_Kangaroo.asp
Wildlife and Rehabilitation Providers. (2000). Wombats. Retrieved October 23, 2003, from www.geocities.com/csean_au/index2.html
Australia Koala Foundation. (2003). Koala Index. Retrieved October 23, 2003, from www.savethekoala.com/koalasindex.html
National Parks and Wildlife Service. (2002). Emu. Retrieved October 23, 2003, from www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au/npws.nsf/content/The+Emu
Back To Top