End of Cycle Benchmarks for Ecoliteracy: by the end of each cycle students will know: Lower Elementary The Living Environment: The Flow of Matter and Energy Plants Making Food Know that plants and animals both need to take in water. Animals also need food and plants need light. Know that animals eat plants or other animals for food. Know plants have different structures that serve different functions in growth, survival, reproduction. Know that almost all kinds of animals’ food can be traced back to plants. Understand that over the whole earth, organisms are growing, dying, decaying and reproducing. Know that the transfer of energy through food consumption is essential to all living organisms. Know the general distinction that plants use sunlight to make food (photosynthesis) and animals consume energy-rich foods. Know that all organisms, including humans, are part of and depend on two main interconnected food webs. Know how matter is recycled within ecosystems. Upper Elementary Middle School Food Web Matter Cycle Know many materials can be recycled and used again, sometimes in different forms. Know that plants and animals use certain resources for energy and growth. Energy in Living Things Know how energy is transferred through food webs in an ecosystem. Human Society: Culture Affects Behavior Groups and Subcultures Know that some people belong to some groups because they are born into them and to some groups because they join them. Understand that different groups have different expectations for how their members should act. Understand that a large society may be made up of many groups, and these groups may contain many distinctly different subcultures. Understand that usually within any society there is broad general agreement on what behavior is acceptable but that the standards used to judge behavior vary for different settings and different subgroups and may change with time and in response to different political and economic conditions. Understand that technology, especially in transportation and communication, is increasingly important in spreading ideas, values, and behavioral patterns within a society and between societies. Cultural Influences Understand that people often choose to do the same kinds of things that their friends do, but that people often choose to do certain things their own way. Understand that each culture has distinctive patterns of behavior that are usually practiced by most of the people who grow up in it. Learning from Others Know that people can learn from each other in many ways. Understand that people can learn about others in many different ways. 102