Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Charles Darwin's On the Origin of Species Was Published 151 Years Ago

Charles Darwin (1809 – 1882) was an English naturalist who established that all species of life have descended over time from common ancestry, and proposed the scientific theory that this branching pattern of evolution resulted from a process that he called natural selection. He published his theory with compelling evidence for evolution in his 1859 book On the Origin of Species. The scientific community and much of the general public came to accept evolution as a fact in his lifetime, but it was not until the emergence of the modern evolutionary synthesis from the 1930s to the 1950s that a broad consensus developed that natural selection was the basic mechanism of evolution. In modified form, Darwin's scientific discovery is the unifying theory of the life sciences, explaining the diversity of life.

Darwin's theory is simply stated in the introduction of his book: "As many more individuals of each species are born than can possibly survive; and as, consequently, there is a frequently recurring struggle for existence, it follows that any being, if it vary however slightly in any manner profitable to itself, under the complex and sometimes varying conditions of life, will have a better chance of surviving, and thus be naturally selected. From the strong principle of inheritance, any selected variety will tend to propagate its new and modified form."

- Wikipedia

Lesson Plan Information
Title: Evolution
Objectives: By the end of this lesson, students will understand that:
- Darwin's theory of evolution (1859) has been accepted but also debated.
- Many scientists—botanist, zoologists, geologists, geneticists—have contributed to the study of evolution.
Concepts / Vocabulary: naturalist, evolution, natural selection, heredity, artificial selection, mutate, sociobiology, genetic code, eugenics.
Grade Level: 9-12
Subject: Biology / Animals
Materials: Reference materials about the history of evolution, computers with access to the Internet; roll paper, rulers, index cards.
Time Needed: Two class periods
Provided by: Discovery Education (Author: Lisa Lyle Wu, science teacher, Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology, Alexandria, Virginia.)


No comments:

Post a Comment