5 E’S LESSON PLAN - LIFE’S A BEACH
• How do biotic and abiotic factors influence biological communities in the Chesapeake Bay region? (including energy flow)
• How are human activities impacting the physical and biological systems in the Bay?
• How does shoreline erosion affect habitat quality and biodiversity?
ENGAGE READING STRATEGIES
1. Have students think about an ideal beach vacation. Where would they want to go? What would the beach look like? READINGS:
What amenities would they want near by? Have students write a “wanted” ad that describes their perfect beach vacation. • Coastal Processes Fact Sheets:
Explain that like most wanted ads listed in the classified section of a newspaper (or online lists), their ad should be ◊ Coastal Flooding & Storm Surge
concise and to the point, yet still get across their main beach vacation desires. Give students about 5 minutes to write
◊ Drivers of Shoreline Change:
their ad. Waves, Currents & Tides
2. Ask for a few volunteers to read their want ads to the class. Discuss the beach amenities they listed. Discuss how these
◊ Dunes & Maryland’s Ocean
characteristics can be described as “people habitat.” Note: for many students, an “ideal beach” will offer many Front
recreational opportunities, and many of these are likely to involve motorized vehicles (jet skis, motorboats) or loud music
and other human activities that can be disturbing to the natural environment. This is okay. This offers an opportunity to ◊ Investigating Types of Structural
compare “people habitat” to native fish & wildlife species preferred habitat later in this lesson.
◊ Living Shorelines
1. Divide students into pairs or small working groups (no more than 4). Distribute the following resource materials: Coastal ◊ Shifting Shorelines: Erosion &
Processes fact sheets and the Biological Community sandy beaches fact sheet along with the student background and
worksheet, Life’s a Beach. Instruct students to review the fact sheets and reading material to identify a beach profile (see ◊ Tides: An In-depth Overview
photos and map on and map on worksheet) that would most likely be best suited for one of the species described in the • Biological Community Fact Sheet:
Sandy Beaches fact sheet (e.g., tiger beetles, piping plover, terrapins, etc.). Give students about 20 minutes to complete
◊ Sandy Beaches
• Sea Level Rise Fact Sheet
1. Have representatives from each group report on their assignment. Did any of the groups pick the same beach photo? • The Role of Benthic Communities
in the Health of Maryland’s
Do any of the groups disagree about the suitability of perceived habitat amenities pictured for certain species? Which
Coastal Bays (Newsletter, February
shorelines did students feel would provide the most biodiversity? Which shoreline did students feel would be the least 2007, UMCES)
habitable? Encourage the groups to discuss their findings.
2. Return to the students’ ideal beach vacation ads. Have students compare their ideal beaches to what beach-dependent WRITING STRATEGIES
species require. How did they differ? What similarities existed? • Ideal beach want ads—using
EXTEND adjectives and concise writing to
1. Have students complete the Beach Management section on the worksheet. establish a point.
EVALUATE TECHNOLOGY INTEGRATION
1. Use the worksheet to assess student understanding of the habitat needs of beach-dependent species. • Maryland Shoreline Changes
2. Use the class discussion & wanted ads to assess student understanding of habitat and the human activities that can Online:
disturb or degrade beach habitat. http://shorelines.dnr.state.md.us/
3. Use the Beach Management section on the student worksheet to assess student ability to synthesize the needs of people
and beach-dependent species into a mutually beneficial habitat management scheme.
Chesapea ke & Coastal Program