Biology

Scope & Sequence

Semester 1  

  • Nature of Life 
  • Ecology 
  • Cells 

 

Semester 2  

  • Genetics 
  • Evolution 

 

Essential Learnings

Semester 1 

  • Use a model to illustrate the role of cellular division (mitosis) and differentiation in producing and maintaining complex organisms. 
  • Use a model to illustrate how photosynthesis transforms light energy into stored chemical energy. (Energy and matter) 
  • Construct and revise an explanation based on evidence for how carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen from sugar molecules may combine with other elements to form amino acids and/or other large carbon-based molecules. (Energy and matter) 
  • Use a model to illustrate that cellular respiration is a chemical process whereby the bonds of food molecules and oxygen molecules are broken and the bonds in new compounds are formed, resulting in a net transfer of energy. 
  • Use mathematical representations to support claims for the cycling of matter and flow of energy among organisms in an ecosystem.  
  • Evaluate claims, evidence, and reasoning that the complex interactions in ecosystems maintain relatively consistent numbers and types of organisms in stable conditions, but changing conditions may result in a new ecosystem. (Stability and change) 
  • Design, evaluate, and refine a solution for reducing the impacts of human activities on the environment and biodiversity. (Stability and change) 

 

Semester 2 

  • Construct an explanation based on evidence for how the structure of DNA determines the structure of proteins, which carry out the essential functions of life through systems of specialized cells.  
  • Make and defend a claim based on evidence that inheritable genetic variations may result from (1) new genetic combinations through meiosis, (2) viable errors occurring during replication, and/or (3) mutations caused by environmental factors. (Cause and effect) 
  • Communicate scientific information that common ancestry and biological evolution are supported by multiple lines of empirical evidence. (Patterns) 
  • Construct an explanation based on evidence that the process of evolution primarily results from four factors: (1) the potential for a species to increase in number, (2) the heritable genetic variation of individuals in a species due to mutation and sexual reproduction, (3) competition for limited resources, and (4) the proliferation of those organisms that are better able to survive and reproduce in the environment. (Cause and effect) 
  • Construct an explanation based on evidence for how natural selection leads to adaptation of populations. (Cause and effect)