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January 18: Taxonomy Chart Lab

Today we started on a Taxonomy Chart Lab.  We divided up into teams of 4 “researchers” and set out to describe what we find in nature.  We are using bags of 10 different “organisms” (cereals) and creating a system to determine the levels of classification.  Each researcher is responsible for their own writing but they will work as a team to come up with a consensus on the characteristics and chart.  The directions are as follows:

1. Observe your organisms carefully.

2. List and describe at least three characteristics for each.  It is smooth, rough, round, square, etc…

3. Create a chart for all of the organisms dividing them up into classification levels.

4. Answer these questions:

How are these organisms the same?

How are these organisms different?

How did you decide which traits to use?

Do you think that every single example of each species will have the same traits?  (This is important because of the diversity in the bag!)

Why is a taxonomic key helpful in this exercise?

Tomorrow we will be constructing the chart with the organism fossils glued to a chart, with labels of each classification.

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