Science / Year 9 / Science Understanding / Biological sciences

View on Australian Curriculum website Australian Curriculum, Assessment and Reporting Authority
Curriculum content descriptions

Ecosystems consist of communities of interdependent organisms and abiotic components of the environment; matter and energy flow through these systems (ACSSU176)

Elaborations
  • exploring interactions between organisms such as predator/prey, parasites, competitors, pollinators and disease
  • examining factors that affect population sizes such as seasonal changes, destruction of habitats, introduced species
  • considering how energy flows into and out of an ecosystem via the pathways of food webs, and how it must be replaced to maintain the sustainability of the system
  • investigating how ecosystems change as a result of events such as bushfires, drought and flooding
Cross-curriculum priorities
ScOT terms

Ecosystems

Video

BTN: Curbing the carp population

Find out why European carp fish are called 'river rabbits' in Australia. Listen to how they came to Australia and what makes them such a pest now.Discover how a local entrepreneur is exploiting the new resource while scientists are doing their best to cap the carp population explosion.

Video

Catalyst: Plants and increased levels of carbon dioxide

We know that most plants use carbon dioxide to make their own food. So what might plants look like in 100 years if carbon dioxide levels continue to increase - will they become enormous and overtake our backyards? View the possible effects of changes in atmospheric carbon dioxide on plants and, in turn, humans and other animals.

Video

Aerial Orang Utans

This 11 minute video segment form Catalyst shows that although the orang-utans of Borneo are threatened with extinction, we don't know exactly how many are left or where they are. The use of helicopters to locate their nests and estimate population size has helped to challenge our thinking about the requirements of this ...

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Weeds attack!

Weeds attack! is a web-based, multimedia resource with interactive learning activities aimed at preparing students to investigate a local weed of national significance. This is a hands-on project based on the Weed Warriors program. The resource models the activity of growing a bio control for bitou bush, using a games-based ...

Video

Carbon country update

This five and a half minute video segment from Catalyst discusses the potential to manage controlled burning in Arnhem that reduces frequency of wildfires to provide other benefits. The potential to turn this into economic benefits from carbon trading is explored and the science investigations that will first be essential.

Video

Cloud seeding

This nine and a half minute video segment from Catalyst describes how researchers from Monash University have hard evidence that cloud seeding can produce good amounts of extra rainfall. Data collected over a long period of time has give hope to scientists and environmentalists who are trying to reduce the impacts of droughts ...

Video

Catalyst: Megafauna fossils

Travel back in time in outback Australia and investigate the giant lumbering beasts of the past - the megafauna. Visit a fossil site in Cuddie Springs, New South Wales, where megafauna bones have been discovered. Explore the connection between Aboriginal peoples and megafauna, and theories for the extinction of Australia's ...

Interactive

Murray-Darling Basin Quiz

This is a ten question multiple choice quiz on student understanding of issues specific to the Murray-Darling Basin, but are examples of common Australian environmental problems resulting from human activities. This is a non-threatening activity that provides excellent explanations as feedback.

Video

Turtles

This 7 minute video segment from Catalyst describes the risk factors that impact on turtle survival. Protecting the future of turtle populations on the Queensland coast has been the life's work of Col Limpus for the past 40 years. His efforts have included research and reducing predation from foxes and entrapment in trawler nets.

Video

Rabbit immunity

This 6 minute video segment from Catalyst covers a range of biological concepts associated with the history, impacts and methods of control of the introduced rabbit in Australia.

Video

Argo floats

This minute video segment from Catalyst decade ago describes the Australian initiative, Argo, that has become a major international collaborative project to look at the world's oceans and help understand processes at depth - monitoring the pulse of the global heat balance and giving us vital information on the ocean's role ...

Interactive

Habitats

Students use this resource consisting of four slides with diagrams, written explanation and voice-over to understand the relationship between habitat and ecosystem and important factors in some habitats. There is a two-question quiz and a summary slide.

Video

Coal Gas

This 12 minute video segment from Catalyst outlines how for decades, scientists have worked to develop technologies that can unlock the energy from coal while reducing the risks of digging it up and burning it. Now entirely new industries are booming as they tap into coal seams either too gassy or too deep to be mined by ...

Interactive

Science Talk 2007: Tim Entwistle

An interview and tour of the Royal Botanic Gardens of Sydney and its herbarium with Dr Tim Entwistle, a plant scientist and the NSW Government Botanist. Tim talks to a pre-service teacher from Macquarie University about his love of plants, in particular freshwater algae. In the herbarium we find out why it is so important ...

Interactive

Science Talk 2007: Martina Doblin

An interview and lab tour with Dr Martina Doblin, a phytoplankton ecologist at UTS. Martina talks to students and their teacher from Concord High School about her work studying microscopic organisms such as the toxic algae that make up harmful algal blooms.

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Treetop kangaroos

This ABC In Depth feature article includes everything you wanted or needed to know about tree kangaroos. This article describes their reproduction, classification, adaptations and issues relating to their conservation.

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Ibis Invasion

This ABC In Depth feature article describes research on Australian white ibis - or 'tip turkeys' as many call them. They are regarded as a nuisance in cities, especially in the spring breeding season. But scientists fear they may become extinct as more pressure is put on the wetlands that are their native and adopted environments. ...

Online

Exploring the production and marketing of seafood

This is a teacher resource containing a series of inquiry teaching sequences relating to seafood production and marketing in Australia. It contains material to assist planning, implementing and assessing a research task about the technologies and methods used in the fishing and aquaculture industries to catch and farm seafood, ...

Online

Animal Health: the science of healthy animals

This study guide considers the science behind breeding, genetics, health and animal welfare in the cattle and sheep industries - keeping animals free of disease and parasites, improving biodiversity and protecting against feral animals. A range of articles and student activities explores how farmers and scientists are working ...

Online

Greener farming: protecting the environment

This study guide examines ways Australian cattle and sheep farmers are monitoring and researching how greenhouse gas emissions are being produced by farms and steps farmers use to reduce them. This includes selective breeding programs to produce cattle and sheep whose digestive processes emit less methane, research into ...