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Rival for Survival

Elementary, Middle

Description

This resource includes a downloadable board game that allows students to explore exotic species—how they can impact natural areas and how our actions affect their control and spread.

Prior to playing the game, groups of students are provided with a ‘Backgrounder’ that explains the term exotic and introduces the important issues to consider. Each group develops a concept map based on their discussion that will contribute to a class map.

In playing the game students roll dice and move across the game board toward the Great Lakes. They earn points at various ‘stops’ by correctly answering questions related to invasive species. Game card questions provide information on a range of important aspects related to the introduction, impact and control of exotics. The goal is to collect the most points by the time all players have reached the finish line/square or time expires.

The game pieces and instructions can be found here.

 

 

General Assessment

What skills does this resource explicitly teach?

This resource does not explicitly teach  skills.

Strengths

  • interesting and engaging idea for instruction
  • different method of evaluation that is creative
  • all materials are provided
  • helpful suggestions for teachers
  • assessment rubric included
  • useful web links are provided to explore the topic in more detail

Weaknesses

The weaknesses of the resource are:

  • measurements are imperical not metric
  • the lack of structured cooperative learning opportunities for the students
  • the lack of inclusion of  economic factors

Relevant Curriculum Units

The following tool will allow you to explore the relevant curriculum matches for this resource. To start, select a province listed below.

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  • Alberta
    • Step 2Select a grade level
    • Grade 5
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Wetland Ecosystems
    • Grade 7
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Interactions and Ecosystems
    • Grade 8
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Freshwater and Saltwater Systems
  • Manitoba
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    • Grade 4
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      • Science
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        • Habitat and Communities
    • Grade 7
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Interactions Within Ecosystems
    • Grade 8
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Water Systems on Earth
  • New Brunswick
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    • Grade 3
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Science 3.Our Local Environment: Science Technology Society and Environment (STSE)
        • Science 3: Our Local Environment:Scientific Literacy
  • Newfoundland & Labrador
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    • Grade 4
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Habitats
    • Grade 7
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Interaction of Ecosystems
    • Grade 8
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Water Systems on Earth's Surface
  • Northwest Territories
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    • Grade 4
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Life Systems: Habitats & Communities
    • Grade 5
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    • Grade 7
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Interactions and Ecosystems
    • Grade 8
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Freshwater and Saltwater Systems
  • Nova Scotia
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    • Grade 4
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Science 4: Habitats
    • Grade 7
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Science 7: Environmental Action
  • Nunavut
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    • Grade 4
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Life Systems: Habitats & Communities
    • Grade 5
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    • Grade 7
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Interactions and Ecosystems
    • Grade 8
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Freshwater and Saltwater Systems
        • Interactions in Our Environment
  • Ontario
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    • Grade 4
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      • Science & Technology
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Life Systems: Habitats and Communities
    • Grade 7
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Geography
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Natural Resources around the World: Use and Sustainability
        • Physical Patterns in a Changing World
      • Science & Technology
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Life Systems: Interactions in the Environment
  • Prince Edward Island
    • Step 2Select a grade level
    • Grade 4
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      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Habitats
    • Grade 7
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Interactions Within Ecosystems
    • Grade 8
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Water Systems on Earth
  • Quebec
  • Saskatchewan
    • Step 2Select a grade level
    • Grade 4
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Habitats and Communities
    • Grade 7
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Science 7: Life Science: Interactions within Ecosystems
    • Grade 8
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Science
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Science 8: Water Systems on Earth

Themes Addressed

  • Ecosystems (3)

    • Endangered Species
    • Invasive Species
    • Wildlife Protection
  • Land Use & Natural Resources (1)

    • Planting Native Species

Sustainability Education Principles

Principle Rating Explanation
Consideration of Alternative Perspectives Good
Consideration of Alternative Perspectives:
  • Satisfactory: absence of bias towards any one point of view
  • Good: students consider different points of view regarding issues, problems discussed
  • Very good: based on the consideration of different views, students form opinions and  take an informed position
Multiple Dimensions of Problems & Solutions Good

The resource does a wonderful job of addressing the environmental and social dimensions of the issue. It is lacking in the area of the economic focus.  More specifically, teachers should introduce the economic impacts that occur when an invasive species takes over the habitat of indeginous species.

Multiple Dimensions of Problems & Solutions:

Effectively addresses the environmental, economic and social dimensions of the issue(s) being explored.

  • Satisfactory: resource supports the examination of  these dimensions
  • Good:  resource explicitly examines the interplay of these dimensions
  • Very Good:  a systems-thinking approach is encouraged to examine these three dimensions
Respects Complexity Good

In this resource a systems-thinking approach is the basis of the lesson.  The students learn how one decision can have a huge impact on the environment of the Great Lakes.

Respects Complexity:

The complexity of the problems/issues being discussed is respected.

Acting on Learning Poor/Not considered

The resource does not provide an action component.

Acting on Learning:

Learning moves from understanding  issues  to working towards positive change — in personal lifestyle, in school, in the community,  or for the planet

  • Satisfactory: action opportunities are included as extensions 
  • Good: action opportunities are core components of the resource
  • Very Good: action opportunities for students are well supported and intended to result in observable, positive change
Values Education Satisfactory

While not a strength of this resource, the debriefing activity can be adapted to provide an apportunity for values to be expressed.

Values Education:

Students are explicitly provided with opportunities to identify, clarify and express their own beliefs/values.

Empathy & Respect for Humans Poor/Not considered

This is not the focus of this resource.

Empathy & Respect for Humans: Empathy and respect are fostered for diverse groups of humans (including different genders, ethnic groups, sexual preferences, etc.).
Personal Affinity with Earth Good

An understanding of the fragility of the Great Lakes ecosystem is developed. 

Personal Affinity with Earth:

Encourages a personal affinity with -the natural world.  

  • Satisfactory: connection is made to the natural world
  • Good: fosters appreciation/concern for the natural world
  • Very Good: fosters stewardship though practical and respectful experiences out-of-doors 
Locally-Focused Learning Very Good

The Great Lakes and their preservation, are relevant  to all Canadians.

Locally-Focused Learning:

Includes learning experiences that take advantage of issues/elements within the local community. 

  • Satisfactory: learning is made relevant to the lives of the learners
  • Good: learning is made relevant and has a local focus
  • Very Good: learning is made relevant, local and takes place ‘outside’ , in the community 
Past, Present & Future Poor/Not considered

The resource does not address this.

Past, Present & Future: Promotes an understanding of the past, a sense of the present, and a positive vision for the future.

Pedagogical Approaches

Principle Rating Explanation
Open-Ended Instruction Good

The structure of the lesson and the fact that it is based on a board game with definite correct answers leaves no room for multiple/complex answers; however, the resource does deliver a large quantity of important information on the subject.

Open-Ended Instruction :

Lessons are structured so that multiple/complex answers are possible; students are not steered toward one 'right' answer.

Integrated Learning Good
Integrated Learning:

Learning brings together content and skills  from more than one  subject area

  • Satisfactory: content from a number of different  subject areas is readily identifiable
  • Good:  resource is appropriate for use in more than one subject area
  • Very Good:  the lines between subjects are blurred 
Inquiry Learning Satisfactory
Inquiry Learning:

Learning is directed by questions, problems, or challenges that students work to address.   

  • Satisfactory: Students are provided with questions/problems to solve and some direction on how to arrive at solutions.
  • Good: students, assisted by the teacher clarify the question(s) to ask and the process to follow to arrive at solutions.  Sometimes referred to as Guided Inquiry
  • Very Good:  students generate the questions and assume much of the responsibility for how to solve them.  . Sometimes referred to as self-directed learning.

 

Differentiated Instruction Good

This resource will appeal to students with the playing of a board game as the central learning feature.  It also offers a method of demonstrating the knowledge gained in the activity that is more creative with the concept mapping activitiy.

Differentiated Instruction:

Activities address a range of student learning styles, abilities and readiness.

  • Satisfactory:  includes a variety of instructional approaches
  • Good: addresses  the needs of visual, auditory &  kinesthetic learners
  • Very Good: also includes strategies for learners with difficulties
Experiential Learning Satisfactory
Experiential Learning:

Authentic learning experiences are provided

  • Satisfactory: learning takes place through ‘hands-on’ experience or simulation
  • Good: learning involves direct experience in a ‘real world context’
  • Very good: learning involves ‘real world experiences’ taking place’ beyond the school walls.
Cooperative Learning Satisfactory
Cooperative Learning:

Group and cooperative learning strategies are a priority.

  • Satisfactory:  students work in groups
  • Good: cooperative learning skills are explicitly taught and practiced
  • Very Good: cooperative learning skills are explicitly taught, practiced and assessed
Assessment & Evaluation Good

The resource provides a set of guiding questions to help the teacher discuss the topic with his/her students.  A rubric is also provided for the evaluation of the concept map.  There are also suggestions made as to the type of information that should be included in the students' concept maps.

Assessment & Evaluation: Tools are provided that help students and teachers to capture formative and summative information about students' learning and performance. These tools may include reflection questions, checklists, rubrics, etc.
Peer Teaching Satisfactory

There is an opportunity for the students to share information when the class concept map is being completed.

Peer Teaching:

Provides opportunities for students to actively present their knowledge and skills to peers and/or act as teachers and mentors.

  • Satisfactory: incidental teaching that arises from cooperative learning, presentations, etc.
  • Good or Very Good: an opportunity is intentionally created to empower students to teach other students/community members. The audience is somehow reliant on the students' teaching (students are not simply ‘presenting')
Case Studies Good

The fact that the mutiple choice questions are based on real scenarios helps the students to examine the concepts in an authentic context.

Case Studies:

Relevant case studies are included.  Case studies are thorough descriptions of real events from real situations that students use to explore  concepts in an authentic context.

Locus of Control Poor/Not considered

The resource is not structured in a manner to allow the students to make choices.

Locus of Control: Meaningful opportunities are provided for students to choose elements of program content, the medium in which they wish to work, and/or to go deeper into a chosen issue.