Alaska Sea Grant

Scoring Guide for the Unit

An Aquatic Eco-Mystery: The Case of the Missing Otters

1. Shows understanding that an ecosystem is complex and includes both living and nonliving things.
The ecosystem shown or described includes:
4 points Water, physical elements such as rocks, the sun, producers, and consumers.   
3 points
Water, physical elements, at least one producer and one consumer. 
2 points
Water OR physical elements, producer(s) OR consumer(s). 
1 point
Living things only.    
   
2. Shows understanding of interconnections and interdependence in an aquatic ecosystem.  
The interactions shown or described include:
4 points A food web (more complex than a simple food chain), shelter, adaptations of animals, effects of change.  
3 points
A food chain including producers and consumers, with at least 4 organisms, shelter. 
2 points
A simple food chain with consumer(s) and producer(s).
1 point
One simple interaction between two organisms.
   
3. Shows understanding of change in an ecosystem.
Description includes:
4 points Selection of an important element, with at least 5 reasonably possible consequences to other elements of the ecosystem.
3 points
At least 3 consequences that are reasonably possible, with little evidence of misunderstanding.  
2 points
At least 2 reasonable consequences, but also includes some incorrect or unreasonable assumptions.    
1 point
One correct consequence of removing something from the ecosystem.  
   
4. Demonstrates understanding of scientific processes.  
Describes:
4 points Questioning, Observation, and Data Collection with detailed methods and with reasons given for the importance of following scientific procedures.  
3 points
Questioning, Observation, and Data Collection.   
2 points
Two processes from Questioning, Observation, Data Collection. 
1 point
Questioning, Observing, OR Data Collection. 

4 points indicates complete understanding or an “A” grade.
3 points indicates partial understanding or a “B” Grade.
2 points indicates developing understanding or a “C” grade.
1 point indicates minimal understanding or a “D” grade.

Teachers may want to add additional criteria to the scoring guide to evaluate science notebooks, field etiquette, participation, neatness of work, writing conventions, or other desired outcomes.

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