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Lesson summary for:
Evo in the news: More than morphology

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Overview:
This news brief, from August 2006, describes recent research on T. rex, with a special focus on how paleontologists move beyond the shape of the animal's bones to learn about aspects of its life that don't fossilize very well: its physiology, sensory abilities, and population dynamics.

Author/Source:
UC Museum of Paleontology

Grade level:
9-12

Time:
15 minutes

Teaching tips:
This article includes a set of discussion and extension questions for use in class. It also includes hints about related lessons that might be used in conjunction with this one. Get more tips for using Evo in the News articles in your classroom.

Concepts:
Correspondence to the Next Generation Science Standards is indicated in parentheses after each relevant concept. See our conceptual framework for details.

  • Life forms of the past were in some ways very different from living forms of today, but in other ways very similar. (LS4.A)

  • Present-day species evolved from earlier species; the relatedness of organisms is the result of common ancestry. (LS4.A)

  • The fossil record provides evidence for evolution.

  • There are similarities and differences among fossils and living organisms.

  • A hallmark of science is exposing ideas to testing. (P3, P4, P6, P7)

  • Scientists test their ideas using multiple lines of evidence. (P6, NOS2)

  • Scientists can test ideas about events and processes long past, very distant, and not directly observable.

  • Scientific knowledge is open to question and revision as we come up with new ideas and discover new evidence. (P4, P6, NOS3)

  • Scientists use multiple research methods (experiments, observational research, comparative research, and modeling) to collect data. (P2, P3, P4, NOS1)

  • Our knowledge of the evolution of living things is always being refined as we gather more evidence.

  • Scientists use fossils (including sequences of fossils showing gradual change over time) to learn about past life.

Teacher background:

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