Overview

Did you know that trees are actually plants? Or that we would be unable to survive on this planet without plants? These are just a few of the facts presented in this Serious Science video. Josh and Caroline start things off with a debate about whether plants are best as an economic product or as a living home to wildlife. Where do you stand?

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So…what is a plant exactly? Josh and Caroline will help you out with that one, before handing things off to mission control. There, Amelia defines the different values related to forests.

First, it’s important to understand the difference between abiotic and biotic factors. Biotic factors are living things that contribute to healthy ecoScreen Shot 2016-06-13 at 2.00.31 PMsystems. Trees fall into this category, as they take in carbon dioxide, expel oxygen, and feed other species. Abiotic factors include non-living, but essential, parts of an ecosystem. Water, air, soil, and structure fall into this category. Again, trees provide, or help to provide, a multitude of abiotic factors.

Watch the video to learn about the variety of values related to plants. Ecological, economic, social, recreational, cultural, and traditional values all tie in to how humans perceive the environment. What do you value about plants, trees, and the natural world?

Check out the links below and the lesson activities to gain more knowledge about the role plants play in our lives.

Available Lessons

Elementary Lessons

Middle School Lessons