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Vascular System
Big Idea
Plant structures and functions have evolved over time.
Essential Questions
How do materials move throughout non vascular plants?
What is the function of the four main plant tissues? How does each type of tissue allow plants to function and reproduce on  land?
Describe the structure and function of roots, stems and leaves in both monocots and dicots. How do plants use roots stems and leaves to move materials (gases, nutrients, water)  throughout their bodies?
How does the structure of a leaf enable a plant to carry out photosynthesis? How does the environment affect photosynthesis?
Why are plants with vascular systems superior to plants that lack a vascular system?

Formulate a testable hypothesis.
Interpret data that show a variety of possible relationships between variables, including
  • positive relationship
  • negative relationship
  • no relationship
For a specific investigation, choose an appropriate method for communicating the results.
Conduct a scientific investigation that is based on a research design.
Evaluate whether investigational data support or do not support the proposed hypothesis.
Analyze mechanisms of transport of materials (e.g., water, ions, macromolecules) into and out of cells
  • passive transport
  • active transport
Record observations, notes, sketches, questions, and ideas using tools such as journals, charts, graphs, and computers.
Evaluate the design of an investigation to identify possible sources of procedural error, including
  • sample size
  • trials
  • controls
  • analyses
Compare the processes of photosynthesis and cellular respiration in terms of energy flow, reactants, and products.
Science & Engineering Practices
Developing and Using Models
Modeling in 9–12 builds on K–8 experiences and progresses to using, synthesizing, and developing models to predict and show relationships among variables between systems and their components in the natural and designed worlds.
  • Develop and use a model based on evidence to illustrate the relationships between systems or between components of a system. (HS-LS1-2)
Planning and Carrying Out Investigations
Planning and carrying out in 9-12 builds on K-8 experiences and progresses to include investigations that provide evidence for and test conceptual, mathematical, physical, and empirical models.
  • Plan and conduct an investigation individually and collaboratively to produce data to serve as the basis for evidence, and in the design: decide on types, how much, and accuracy of data needed to produce reliable measurements and consider limitations on the precision of the data (e.g., number of trials, cost, risk, time), and refine the design accordingly. (HS-LS1-3)
Analyzing and Interpreting Data
Analyzing data in 9–12 builds on K–8 experiences and progresses to introducing more detailed statistical analysis, the comparison of data sets for consistency, and the use of models to generate and analyze data.
  • Apply concepts of statistics and probability (including determining function fits to data, slope, intercept, and correlation coefficient for linear fits) to scientific and engineering questions and problems, using digital tools when feasible. (HS-LS4-3)
Constructing Explanations and Designing Solutions
Constructing explanations and designing solutions in 9–12 builds on K–8 experiences and progresses to explanations and designs that are supported by multiple and independent student-generated sources of evidence consistent with scientific ideas, principles, and theories.
  • Construct an explanation based on valid and reliable evidence obtained from a variety of sources (including students’ own investigations, models, theories, simulations, peer review) and the assumption that theories and laws that describe the natural world operate today as they did in the past and will continue to do so in the future. (HS-LS1-1)
Content/Core Ideas
  • Non vascular plants have special structures that allow them to obtain water and nutrients. 
  • Seed plants cells are organized into tissues and organs.
  • The primary tissues are dermal, vascular, ground, and meristemic.  
  • Tissues make up plant organs (roots, stems and leaves).
  • Roots, stems and leaves allow plants to function and reproduce on land.
  • Roots, stems and leaves are organs of plants.  Together these organs allow the plant to survive in a variety of conditions.
  • Roots are used to collect water and nutrients through the soil.
  • Stems act as transport systems.
  • Leaves are used for photosythesis.
  • Leaves have a flat broad structure creating ample surface area.
  • Leaves also have a waxy cuticle on one side.
  • Leaves need CO2, light and water in order to go through the process of photosynthesis.
  • Vascular plants are able to survive in a variety of environments. 
  • Vascular plants have greater diversity.
Learning Practices
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RST.11-12.3 Follow precisely a complex multistep procedure when carrying out experiments, taking measurements, or performing technical tasks; analyze the specific results based on explanations in the text.

Design and use graphic organizers to show relationships between and within content topics (flowcharts, venn diagrams, cladograms, mind maps...).

Active Engagement Partner work:  Students work with partner(s) to solve basic problems, build models, think pair share...
Academic Vocabulary
dermal tissue
vascular tissue
meristemic tissue
ground tissue
apical meristem
fibrous root
root hairs
root caps
vascular cylinder
root pressure
vascular bundles
primary growth
secondary growth
vascular cambium
cork cambium
palisade mesophyll
spongy mesophyll
guard cells
capillary action
pressure-flow hypothesis
No new vocab
No new vocab
Here are SOME ways for students to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of essential questions.
  • Students will diagram and explain how non vascular plants obtain water and nutrients.
  • Students will design a graphic organizer to explain types of plant tissues, their structure, function and connection to reproduction.
  • Students will explain through the use of a model how water moves to the top of a Redwood tree.
  • Students will design and conduct a lab that shows the effects of factors (light, temperature, water, nutrients) on gas exchange.
  • Students will write a discussion explaining why vascular plants are superior to nonvascular.  Must use references from notes, textbook and any other sources.