Adirondack Sciences

This course is designed to cover a variety of topics relating to the Adirondack Park. The objective is to provide students with knowledge relating to aquatic sciences and wildlife management. ADK Sciences is an upper-level, yearlong science course. Students study a variety of topics that include: components of an aquatic ecosystem; relationships among aquatic habitats and ecosystems; roles of cycles within an aquatic environment; adaptations of organisms; changes within aquatic environments; identification of aquatic organisms; and using aquatic species to determine the overall health of an aquatic ecosystem.

Students will gain an overall understanding of aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems, including freshwater ecosystems and the flora and fauna found in them. Students will also acquire the necessary skills, responsibilities and knowledge to be good stewards of all environments.

Required Supplies

  • A three-ring binder
  • Students may also be asked to gather materials from outside school that will aid in lab and field investigations

Course Format and Procedures

The course’s lab and field investigations are meant to compliment the lecture/discussion portion of the course by providing opportunities to learn about the Adirondacks through firsthand observations.  Students will test concepts and principles introduced in class, explore specific issues and concepts in greater depth and gain an awareness of the issues that exist in the Adirondack Mountains. On average, multiple class periods per week will be spent conducting labs, activities or field work. Lectures, meanwhile, will be delivered a few times per week and incorporate pictures, graphs and other various visual aids. Students will be expected to take notes and participate in class discussion.

Grading Procedures

Students will be assessed regularly with quizzes and lecture quizzes.  Students are evaluated on their level of performance in laboratory exercises, lab write-ups, homework, attendance and organization of their binder.

The following breakdown will be used to calculate quarter grades:

  • Tests and quizzes: 40%
  • Other (homework, labs, activities and class assignments): 60%

Student and Parent Resources

The classrooms are equipped with a teacher computer that is connected to a smartboard, document camera and a demo desk. The school also has access to laptops for each student.  Classroom discussions are supplemented by computer animations and pictures; in addition, the teachers will utilize various websites to maximize instructional time.

Course Outline

Week 1: Introduction To The Course

Week 2: Defining The Adirondack Park – Part 1

Week 3: Defining The Adirondack Park – Part 2

Week 4: Water Quality Study (Stream) – Part 1

Week 5: Water Quality Study (Stream) – Part 2

Week 6: Food Plot Preparation/ Soil Testing – Part 1

Week 7: Food Plot Preparation / Plant Comparison – Part 2

Week 8: Intro To Ecology

Week 9: Population Biology

Week 10: Adk Animal Identification– Part 1

Week 11: Adk Animal Identification – Part 2

Week 12: Thanksgiving Recess

Week 13: Adk Fish Identification

Week 14: Adk Aquaculture

Week 15: Adk Wetlands – Delineation

Week 16: Invasive Species In The Adirondacks

Week 17: Christmas Recess

Week 18: Turkey Biology & Management

Week 19: Acid Rain In The Adirondacks

Week 20: History Of The Sacandaga Lake

Week 21: Water Quality Study (Research Paper) – Part 3

Week 22: Water Quality Study (Research Paper) – Part 4

Week 23: Adk Environmental Law – Apa

Week 24: Winter Birding On Campus – Field Study

Week 25: Winter Break

Week 26: Owl Biology/Owl Pellet

Week 27: Bluebird/Bat/Wood Duck Box Building

Week 28: Forestry/Logging Management

Week 29: Turkey Survey Summary & Poster Presentation

Week 30: Maple Syrup History And Production

Week 31: Deer Biology & Management

Week 32: Food Plot Preparation – Part 3

Week 33: Spring Break

Week 34: Animal Track Id & Casting

Week 35: Biological Survey On Campus

Week 36: Water Quality Study (Lake) – Part 5

Week 37: Water Quality Study (Lake) – Part 6

Week 38: Biological Inventory On Campus

Week 39: Backyard Birding In The Adirondacks

Week 40: Local Finals

Week 41: Regents Week

Week 42: Regents Week