WA.4. Life Science
6-8.LS2. Flow of Energy Through Ecosystems: In prior grades students learned how ecosystems change and how these changes affect the capacity of an ecosystem to support populations. In grades 6-8 students learn to apply key concepts about ecosystems to understand the interactions among organisms and the nonliving environment. Essential concepts include the process of photosynthesis used by plants to transform the energy of sunlight into food energy, which is used by other organisms, and possible causes of environmental change. Students also learn to investigate environmental issues and to use science to evaluate different solutions to problems. Knowledge of how energy flows through ecosystems is a critical aspect of students' understanding of how energy sustains life on the planet, including human life.
6-8.LS2A. Students know that an ecosystem consists of all the populations living within a specific area and the nonliving factors they interact with. One geographical area may contain many ecosystems.
6-8.LS2A.1. Students are expected to explain that an ecosystem is a defined area that contains populations of organisms and nonliving factors.
6-8.LS2A.2. Students are expected to give examples of ecosystems (e.g., Olympic National Forest, Puget Sound, one square foot of lawn) and describe their boundaries and contents.
6-8.LS2B. Students know that energy flows through an ecosystem from producers (plants) to consumers to decomposers. These relationships can be shown for specific populations in a food web.
6-8.LS2B.1. Students are expected to analyze the flow of energy in a local ecosystem, and draw a labeled food web showing the relationships among all of the ecosystem's plant and animal populations.