The Topic Invertebrates by fionan


									                         The Topic: Invertebrates

The Basics
Easier- Invertebrates are animals with out a backbone. They range from a simple sponge
found in the ocean to the millions of insects found everywhere on earth.

Harder – Invertebrates are animals without a backbone. The animal Kingdom is divided
into 34 phyla (singular Phylum) 33 of which include invertebrates. 8 of these phyla make
up the majority of invertebrates. These are the phylum Porifera (10,000 different
species), Cnidarian (9,500), Platyhelminthesis (25,000) , Nematoda(80,000) ,
Annelida(9,000), Mollusca (110,000), Arthropoda(1,000,000) and Echinodermata
(6,000). Animals are classified into these groups based on major characteristics. Some
of these characteristics include body symmetry, internal and external body structure,
habitat, diet, locomotion and reproduction. They all have one of three types of body
symmetry, either asymmetry, radial symmetry , bilateral symmetry. They have one of
three types of body cavity, either acoelom, psuedocoelom or coelom. They have specific
body structures such pores, segments, tentacles, antennae and other appendages that are
adaptations for survival in their environment. They can be found in all environments.
Many are found in the ocean and are believed to be the first animals on earth. They are
the ancestors of all modern animals. Most of them have simple body plans and obtained
most of their food, oxygen and other materials directly from their surroundings. These
living descendants of early animals are indicators of how successful these simple body
plans were for food gathering, reproduction, and digestion because they still exist in
animals today.

42 eXplore
Meet the Invertebrates
      Discusses classification of animals and then gives a description and link for 7 of
      the 8 major phyla of invertebrates. Includes overview questions for each group.

Welcome to the Myriad World of Invertebrates
     Provides a great overview on the history and evolution on invertebrates. Includes
     a link to an information page on each animal phylum.
Marine Invertebrate
      This site provides a general overview on invertebrates with a very resourceful link
      to the Smithsonian’s Department of Systematic Biology-Invertebrate Zoology
      page. It also provides pictures and information on several examples of
      invertebrate animals.

Introductions to the 8 major Phyla of Invertebrates
      Gives an introduction to the simplest phyla of invertebrates along with different
      examples of sponges in this phylum.

       An introduction to Cnadarians which includes basic characteristics and examples
       along with further classification of this phylum.

       Flatworms (Phylum Platyhelminthesis)
       General information, characteristics, examples and photos of flatworms

       Introduction to the phylum of segmented worms, includes links to the history and
       evolution, the systematics and morphology of these worms.

       This introduction to Molluscs provides a little background information on the
       phylum. It is currently under construction, but should be done soon.

       This site gives an overview on the largest group of animals. It provides links to
       the 5 classes of this phylum.

       General information, characteristics, examples and photos of echinoderms
Be An Explorer
After visiting several of the websites for invertebrates, complete one or more of the
following activities:

Differentiate between the 3 types of symmetry. Go to and complete the lesson
on invertebrates.

Play the Deep Sea Memory Game. Go to “Activities, Games and Fun” on the
Monterey Bay Aquarium page and
play the Deep Sea Memory Game. Then from the animals you match, pick 3
invertebrates to learn more about through the online field guide link. Write a summary
about each animal you chose.

Complete an invertebrate webquest. Follow or adapt the procedures found at one or
more of the following webquests:
       1.) A Hunting We Will Go by Peggy Hanson
       2.) Environmental Invertebrate Webquest by Plainville schools
       3.) The Invertebrate Webquest by Mrs. Inoue
       4.) The Silent Sea Creatures by Denise Paradis
       5.) Wonderful Worms by Kittiya Banks-Johnson and Elizabeth Langer
       6.) Creepy Crawly Bugs by Tori Gilpin and Mike Longoria

Compare and contrast natural and synthetic sponges. Get several examples of natural
and synthetic sponges. Compare and contrast their structure, appearance, water holding
capacity and any other characteristics you can think of.

Speculate on the future of Coral Reefs. Pretend that it is the year 2100. What will our
planet’s coral reefs be like then? Write two different scenarios: 1.) the best possible
situation and why/how it took place and 2.) what may happen if we cannot save them.

Observe and learn about worms. Find directions for collecting and housing worms in
plastic see-through containers at
Raise Monarch Butterflies. Visit and learn
how to raise your own butterflies.

Build (and eat) the Arthropods. Visit and Using mini and regular
marshmallows, pretzel sticks and pull and peel licorice, build a model of an example
from each of the classes on arthropods. Be sure to show correct number of body
segments, legs, antennae and any other distinguishing characteristic of the class. After
the teacher checks your models, you may eat them!

More 2 eXplore
       Websites for students
       What is an invertebrate?
             Information and links designed by 3rd and 4th graders. Gives a simple
             overview on invertebrates.

       Reef invertebrate image gallery
              Provides large, colorful images of invertebrates divided into the different

       More on invertebrates
             Provides pictures and information on major groups of invertebrate.

              A site created by a 7th grade science class that list several examples of
              invertebrates along with descriptions and pictures of each example.

       Kid Info, Reference Resources –Insects
              This is a great site with lots of reference links on the largest group of
              invertebrates, the insects.

       Websites for teachers
       Enchanted Learning – Invertebrates
            Gives examples of invertebrates, which include links to a summary of that
            animal and printouts for labeling.
    Marine Invertebrates

          This is a very good site for classification on animals from phylum to order.

    Invertebrates: The Marvelous Majority
           Includes unique and interesting facts on invertebrates along with quotes
           and poems related to these animals.

    Science – Invertebrates
           This is a great site! Scroll down to the sections on invertebrates. It gives
           lots of links from general information on invertebrates to sites on specific
           phyla and examples of invertebrates.

Words 2 eXplore
    sessile                  symmetry                 asymmetry         acoelom
    bilateral symmetry       radial symmetry          psuedocoelom      coelom
    exoskeleton              endoskeleton             filter feeding    hermaphrodite
    external fertilization   internal fertilization   nematocysts       polyp
    gastrovascular cavity    medusa                   mantle            nephridia
    radula                   gizzard                  appendage         molting
    spiracle                 cephalothorax            simple eye        compound eye
    mandible                 Malpighian tubule        chelicerae        spinneret
    metamorphosis            larva                    pupa              nymph
    tube feet                regeneration             tentacle

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