Lab & Yearlong Understandings

Laboratory Schedule:

Relevant Modules in
Principles of Biology
Week 1
What is Life?
1, 2, 23, 24, and 4
Lab: Termite Trails Mystery (Bio Inquiries)
Starts: Thursday, 9-6
Week 2
What entails the study of life?
No Friday Lab – special schedule for Sustainability
Week 3
12, 14, and 15
Starts: Thurs, 9-20
Week 4
Cell membranes
18, 19, and 20

Week 5
25, 26, (27), and (28)

Lab: Osmosis and Diffusion (Potato Cubes)
OCT 8 and 9

Week 6
29, (30), and (31)

Week 7
Intro to Animal Organ Systems
126, 127, 128, 144, and 150

Lab: Energetics and Photosynthesis (DPIP)
Week 8
Select Animal Systems
151, 155, 156, 157, 158, and 159
(no Friday or Saturday classes– parents weekend
Week 9
Plant Function
115, 116, 32
Lab: Metabolism and O2 Consumption (crayfish)
No Monday classes – parents weekend)

Week 10
37, 161, 118, 119

Year long course understandings:

Yearlong/Comprehensive Understandings
As a result of their active participation in honors biology through the year, students should understand the following:

About Science:
·       Scientific ThinkingScientists use logical reasoning and empirical evidence that is valid, relevant, and sufficient and gathered through observation and experimentation in order to evaluate the soundness of knowledge claims.
·       Scientific InquiryScientists develop testable hypotheses/models that guide investigations characterized by repeated measures, representative sampling, and controlled variables to produce corroborating or falsifying empirical evidence.
·       Scientific KnowledgeClaims in science are supported logically by evidence gathered through empirical observation and experimentation, and are contingent and often changing as new evidence is developed resulting in an inherent uncertainty to scientific knowledge.
·       Patterns and ProcessesScientists discern spatial and temporal patterns in nature, often with the aid of technology, and then seek to explain the processes that give rise to these patterns through model building, observation, and experimentation.
·       SystemsScientists seek to understand how things influence one another in nature, defining systems with boundaries and interacting subsystems, inputs and outputs, and relationships to other systems.
·       ModelsScientists develop models (conceptual, mathematical, statistical, physical) to imagine how nature works, tests them through observation and experimentation involving the real world, and then corroborating, falsifying, and/or refining the models over time based on their predictive and explanatory power.

About Biology:
·       Interactions of energy and matter characterize living systems at distinctive levels of organization.
o   As with any processes that require the transfer and transformation of energy, living systems are governed by universal laws of thermodynamics.
o   At the organism and cellular levels of structure the interactions of matter and energy are known collectively as metabolism.  Metabolic processes may be further distinguished as those which construct molecules – anabolism and those which dismantle molecules – catabolism.
o   Energy flows through living systems due to the negentropic functions of individual organisms that are ultimately fueled by the sun.  Living systems may be characterized by their requirement of an input of available energy and resulting in the loss of energy available to perform work in the living systems.
o   Matter recycles within different levels of organization in living systems as the energy available is used to organize molecular building blocks into structures that grow, repair, and reproduce living structures from the materials acquired in their surroundings.
·       Unity and diversity in living systems is explained through the ultimate cause of evolution acting through the more proximate cause of environmental limiting factors.
o   The unity of living systems includes nucleic acids as the molecular basis for inheritance and the cell as the fundamental level of organization for structure and function.
o   The diversity of living systems is an outcome of different designs for survival in the context of environmental resources and constraints.
o   Different mechanisms of evolution disrupt genetic equilibrium and result in evolution, but natural selection is the only mechanism that results in adaptation.
·       Analysis of living systems reveals the correlated structures and functions of component parts.  Through the interaction, communication and coordination between parts, however, new properties emerge in the living systems that are fundamental to the understanding of their function.
Living systems have feedback mechanisms in order to maintain dynamic equilibrium and provide responses, allowing living systems to react to stimuli in their internal and external environments.  Most important to this process are negative feedback systems that respond to the products of a system in order to return a system to optimal internal environments, maintaining homeostasis; positive feedback mechanisms may amplify responses.