Posted: Fri, 06/03/2016 - 2:41pm Updated: Fri, 05/19/2017 - 11:07am

This Teacher Resource Guide has been developed to provide supporting materials to help educators successfully implement the Indiana Academic Standards for Environmental Science. These resources are provided to help you in your work to ensure all students meet the rigorous learning expectations set by the Academic Standards. Use of these resources is optional – teachers should decide which resource will work best in their school for their students.

This resource document is a living document and will be frequently updated.

Please send any suggested links and report broken links to:
Jarred Corwin
Secondary Science Specialist

The resources, clarifying statements, and vocabulary in this document are for illustrative purposes only, to promote a base of clarity and common understanding. Each item illustrates a standard but please note that the resources, clarifying statements, and vocabulary are not intended to limit interpretation or classroom applications of the standards.

The links compiled and posted in this Resource Guide have been provided by classroom teachers, the Department of Education,  and other sources. The DOE has not attempted to evaluate any posted materials. They are offered as samples for your reference only and are not intended to represent the best or only approach to any particular issue. The DOE does not control or guarantee the accuracy, relevance, timeliness, or completeness of information contained on a linked website; does not endorse the views expressed or services offered by the sponsor of a linked website; and cannot authorize the use of copyrighted materials contained in linked websites. Users must request such authorization from the sponsor of the linked website.


Standard 1: Environmental Systems
Indiana Academic Standard Activities/Labs/Simulations (Examples and Ideas)
Env.1.1 Understand and explain that ecosystems have cyclic fluctuations, such as seasonal changes or changes in population, as a result of migration, birth, and mortality. Population and ecosystems
Env.1.2 Understand and explain that human beings are part of Earth’s ecosystems and give examples of how human activities can, deliberately or inadvertently, alter ecosystems. Ecosystem simulation
Env.1.3 Recognize and describe the difference between systems in equilibrium and systems in disequilibrium.  Describe how steady state is achieved through negative and positive feedback loops.  
Env.1.4 Diagram the cycling of carbon, nitrogen, phosphorus, and water and describe the human impacts on each. Carbon cycle Carbon cycle 2 Carbon cycle PBS
Env.1.5 Identify and measure biological, chemical, and physical (abiotic and biotic) factors within an ecosystem.  
Env.1.6 Describe the difference between weather and climate.  Locate, identify, and describe the major Earth biomes.  Explain how biomes are determined by climate (temperature and precipitation patterns) that support specific kinds of plants. Climate Change Inquiry Lab
Env.1.7 Identify tools and technologies used to adapt and alter environments and natural resources in order to meet human physical and cultural needs.  
Env.1.8 Explain the factors that influence weather and climate, the action of gravitational forces, and the rotation of the Earth.  
Env.1.9 Describe how weather can be influenced by global climatic patterns, such as El Niño and La Niña. El Niño
Standard 2: Flow of Matter and Energy
Indiana Academic Standard Activities/Labs/Simulations (Examples and Ideas)
Env.2.1 Describe how matter cycles through sources and sinks and how energy is transferred.  Explain how matter and energy move between and within components of an environmental system.  
Env.2.2 Identify the different forms of energy and understand that energy may be converted from one form to another, but cannot be created or destroyed.  
Env.2.3 Recognize and explain that the amount of life any environment can support is limited by the available energy, water, oxygen, nutrients and minerals, and by the ability of ecosystems to recycle organic materials from the remains of dead organisms. Carrying Capacity Interactive Wild Life Bear Carrying Capacity
Env.2.4 Recognize and describe the different sources of energy, including fossil fuels, nuclear, and alternative sources of energy provided by water, wind, geothermal, biomass/biofuels, and the sun.  
Env.2.5 Give examples of the various forms and uses of fossil fuels and nuclear energy in our society. Save the world game
Env.2.6 Understand and describe how layers of energy-rich organic material have been gradually turned into great coal beds and oil pools by the pressure of the overlying earth. Recognize that by burning these fossil fuels, people are passing stored energy back into the environment as heat and releasing large amounts of matter such as carbon dioxide and other air pollutants. Energy and power
Env.2.7 Differentiate between renewable and nonrenewable resources, and compare and contrast the pros and cons of using nonrenewable resources.  
Env.2.8 Cite examples of how all fuels, renewable and nonrenewable, have advantages and disadvantages that society must question when considering the trade-offs among them, such as how energy use contributes to the rising standard of living in the industrially developing nations. However, explain that this energy use also leads to more rapid depletion of Earth’s energy resources and to environmental risks associated with the use of fossil and nuclear fuels.  
Env.2.9 Describe how decisions to slow the depletion of energy sources through efficient technologies can be made at many levels, from personal to national, and these technologies always involve trade-offs of economic costs and social values.  
Env.2.10 Understand and describe how nuclear reactions release energy without the combustion products of burning fuels, but that the radioactivity of fuels and by-products poses other risks which may last for thousands of years. Understand and assess the uses of nuclear fission and fusion, including the implications for society.  
Env.2.11 Recognize and describe the role of natural resources in providing the raw materials for an industrial society.  
Standard 3: Natural Disasters
Indiana Academic Standard Activities/Labs/Simulations (Examples and Ideas)
Env.3.1 Identify and describe geomorphic processes controlled by tectonics (i.e. volcanic activity, uplift, and shaping of landforms) Dynamic Earth interactive Plate tectonics simulation Tectonics
Env.3.2 Identify and describe tornado formation with the use of a weather map. Tornado PBS
Env.3.3 Read and describe a weather map in terms of pressure systems, fronts, and changing weather patterns  
Env.3.4 Identify natural Earth hazards, such as earthquakes and hurricanes, and identify the regions in which they occur as well as the short-term and long-term effects on the environment and on people.  
Standard 4: Environmental Policy
Indiana Academic Standard Activities/Labs/Simulations (Examples and Ideas)
Env.4.1 Explain  environmental policies/organizations (Clean Water Act, Clean Air Act, Endangered Species Act, Species Survival Plan, Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, Department of Energy, and the World Health Organization) and identify their impact. Energy and Environment Legislation
Env.4.2 Understand that environmental policies/decisions have negative and positive impacts on people, societies, and the environment EPA
Standard 5: Biodiversity
Indiana Academic Standard Activities/Labs/Simulations (Examples and Ideas)
Env.5.1 Explain how variation within a species increases the chances of survival of the species under changing environmental conditions.  
Env.5.2 Explain how the great diversity of species increases the chance that at least some living organisms will survive in the event of major global changes. Biodiversity
Env.5.3 Explain genetic engineering and identify implications on the environment and society.  
Env.5.4 Describe, provide examples, and contrast GMO products, organic products, and conventional products.  Describe and explain the environmental concerns associated with GMOs  
Env.5.5 Identify the indirect and direct threats to biodiversity (e.g. habitat lose and destruction, invasion by exotic species, commercial overfishing and hunting, pollution, climate change, and bioaccumulation and biomagnification of toxins)  
Env.5.7 Identify and explain the three levels of biodiversity: genetic, species, and ecosystem  
Standard 6: Population
Indiana Academic Standard Activities/Labs/Simulations (Examples and Ideas)
Env.6.1 Demonstrate, calculate, and explain how factors such as birth rate, death rate, and migration rate determine growth rates of populations. World Population History
Env.6.2 Explain how the size and rate of growth of the human population in any location is affected by economic, political, religious, technological, and environmental (resource availability) factors  
Env.6.3 Describe and give examples about how the decisions of one generation both provide and limit the range of possibilities open to the next generation.  
Env.6.4 Explain how the carrying capacity of an ecosystem may change as availability of resources changes.  
Standard 7: Pollution
Indiana Academic Standard Activities/Labs/Simulations (Examples and Ideas)
Env.7.1 Identify evidence, consequences, and prevention for climate change produced by anthropogenic sources.  
Env.7.2 Differentiate between natural pollution and pollution caused by humans.  
Env.7.3 Compare and contrast the effects of environmental stressors (i.e. herbicides, pesticides) on plants and animals.  Give examples of secondary effects on other environmental components.  
Env.7.4 Explain what common household toxins are, what to do in an emergency, and what proper disposal is.  
Env.7.5 Identify and describe the major air pollutants and their sources and impacts on the environment and human health  
Env.7.6 Understand and explain how the burning of fossil fuels releases energy, waste heat and matter (air pollutants)  
Env.7.7 Describe and explain the product life cycle and waste stream and its implications to waste management.  Explain the difference between reduce, reuse, and recycle  
Standard 8: Natural and Anthropogenic Resource Cycles
Indiana Academic Standard Activities/Labs/Simulations (Examples and Ideas)
Env.8.1 Demonstrate a knowledge of the distribution of natural resources in the U.S. and the world, and explain how natural resources influence relationships among nations. Map resource
Env.8.2 Understand and describe the concept of integrated natural resource management and the values of managing natural resources as an ecological unit.  
Env.8.3 Recognize and explain that in evolutionary change, the present arises from the materials of the past and in ways that can be explained, such as the formation of soil from rocks and dead organic matter.  
Env.8.4 Describe how agricultural technology requires trade-offs between increased production and environmental harm and between efficient production and social values.  
Env.8.5 Describe and examine how water is controlled in developed and undeveloped nations.  
Env.8.6 Understand and describe the concept and the importance of natural and human recycling in conserving our natural resources.   
Env.8.7 Understand and explain that waste management includes considerations of quantity, safety, degradability, and cost. Also understand that waste management requires social and technological innovations because waste-disposal problems are political and economic as well as technical.