Discipline: Science

Grade Level: 8

Course: Physical Science

©Literacy Design Collaborative. September 2011

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The Laws of Conservation and Photosynthesis
  • Background to Share with Students
    • The laws of conservation of mass and conservation of energy are relatively easy to identify by their collective wording “neither created nor destroyed.” However, having students identify examples and demonstrate the process proves difficult. This module will help students explain the law of conservation of energy in terms of energy transformation and demonstrate the law of conservation of matter. This module will afford students the opportunity to learn to write an informational essay as they explain where the energy that powers their bodies originates.

  • Task/Text
    • Teaching Task

      L1: After researching texts on photosynthesis, the law of conservation of matter, and the law of conservation of energy, write an informational essay that describes how the photosynthetic process can be used to demonstrate both the law of conservation of matter and the law of conservation of energy. Support your discussion with evidence from your research.

      Reading Texts
  • Content Standards
    • Standards Source: Number: Content Standards:

      Georgia State Standards:

      Physical Science


      Students will examine the scientific view of the nature of matter.


      Students will be familiar with the forms and transformations of energy.

  • Reading Standards for Informational
    • "Built-In" Reading Standards "When Appropriate" Reading Standards (applicable in black)
      • Read closely to determine what the text says explicitly and to make logical inferences from it; cite specific textual evidence when writing or speaking to support conclusions drawn from the text.
      • Determine central ideas or themes of a text and analyze their development; summarize the key supporting details and ideas.
      • Interpret words and phrases as they are used in a text, including determining technical, connotative, and figurative meanings, and analyze how specific word choices shape meaning or tone.
      • Assess how point of view or purpose shapes the content and style of a text.
      • Read and comprehend complex literary and informational texts independently and proficiently.
      • Analyze how and why individuals, events, and ideas develop and interact over the course of a text.
      • Analyze the structure of texts, including how specific sentences, paragraphs, and larger portions of the text (e.g., section, chapter, scene, or stanza) relate to each other and the whole.
      • Integrate and evaluate content presented in diverse formats and media, including visually and quantitatively, as well as in words.
      • Delineate and evaluate the argument and specific claims in a text, including the validity of the reasoning as well as the relevance and sufficiency of the evidence.
      • Analyze how two or more texts address similar themes or topics in order to build knowledge or to compare the approaches the authors take.
  • Writing Standards for Informational
    • "Built-In" Writing Standards "When Appropriate" Writing Standards (applicable in black)
      • Write informative/explanatory texts to examine and convey complex ideas and information clearly and accurately through the effective selection, organization, and analysis of content.
      • Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development, organization, and style are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience.
      • Develop and strengthen writing as needed by planning, revising, editing, rewriting, or trying a new approach.
      • Draw evidence from literary or informational texts to support analysis, reflection, and research.
      • Write routinely over extended time frames (time for research, reflection, and revision) and shorter time frames (a single sitting or a day or two) for a range of tasks, purposes, and audience.
      • Write arguments to support claims in an analysis of substantive topics or texts, using valid reasoning and relevant and sufficient evidence.
      • Write narratives to develop real or imagined experiences or events using effective technique, well-chosen details, and well-structured event sequences.
      • Use technology, including the Internet, to produce and publish writing and to interact and collaborate with others.
      • Conduct short as well as more sustained research projects based on focused questions, demonstrating understanding of the subject under investigation.
      • Gather relevant information from multiple print and digital sources, assess the credibility and accuracy of each source, and integrate the information while avoiding plagiarism.
  • Scoring Rubric
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