Discover Our Planet's Biodiversity! bridges the gap between scientific researchers and educators through the discovery of modern and ancient biodiversity!

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Educator Resources
Bridging the gap between scientists and educators is a life long goal. As Dioum states, “We will understand only what we are taught.” Therefore, I have devoted a portion of my career to extending my research and that of others to the public. See the resources we have developed, below. Additionally, feel free to contact us with any suggestions or comments on how you have used these resources. Please see the Larisa DeSantis and Derek DeSantis web pages for information regarding our science and education backgrounds.

Featured On-line Educational Resources:

Megalodon Educator's Guide

The Megalodon Educator's Guide consists of seven inquiry-based lessons that address the following questions:

  • How big was Megalodon?
  • How long did Megalodon live?
  • What did Megalodon eat?
  • When did Megalodon live?
  • Where did Megalodon live?
  • Who was Megalodon related to?
  • Why is Megalodon important?

Additionally, the Megalodon Educator's Guide includes cumulating activities in which students develop their own Megalodon exhibits as groups. Field Guides for use while visiting the exhibit are designed for grades K-4 and 5-12. The guide also links all lessons to National Science Education Standards, has extensive vocabulary and resource information, and provides necessary scientific background within each lesson. The guide can be used as an entire module or lessons can be executed independently. Although the Megalodon Educator's Guide was designed to accompany the traveling exhibit, Megalodon: The Large Shark that Ever Lived, the lessons are of broad use to educators everywhere.

Uncovering Florida's Fossil Past

(a.k.a. Selection, Bugs, and Rocks that Roll)

The Uncovering Florida's Fossil Past (UFFP) module is designed to effectively teach necessary background information required to understand evolution. The module consists of three parts:
  1. Determining Fossil Ages
  2. Classifying with Cladistics
  3. Naturally Selecting Insects
This module is designed to be taught as a whole, as doing so will provide students with the skills and understanding of relative and absolute dating, the law of superposition, cladistics (a method of organizing and classifying information), and natural selection. After all of this information is effectively presented to students through inquiry-based lessons, students are well prepared to begin a discussion on evolution.

This module was presented to science teachers as a workshop at both the Florida Association of Science Teachers meeting in Gainesville, Florida (Fall 2006) and the Society of Vertebrate Paleontology Teachers Workshop in Austin, Texas (Fall 2007). Additionally, I formally presented this module to geoscience researchers and educators at the 56th Annual Southeastern Geological Society of America meeting in Savannah, Georgia (DeSantis 2007).

Education Publications & Abstracts:

Below are links to my publications and news articles.  Note, most journal articles may require subscriptions and are unavailable to the general public.

Education Papers:

DeSantis, L.R.G. 2007. Clarifying tropical cyclone activity in centuries past.  Science Teacher 74(6): 78-84 (PDF

MacFadden, B., DeSantis, L.R.G. 2007. No more ivory tower: communicating geoscience to society. Geotimes 52: 42-43
link to Geotimes

DeSantis, L.R.G. 2007. Reconstructing the ancient ecology of the Gray Fossil Site in Tennessee. Now & Then 23(1): 22-24
link to Now & Then

Education Abstracts:

DeSantis, L.R.G.
2007. Selection, bugs, and rocks that roll: teaching evolution through inquiry based lessons of uncontroversial science. Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs 39: 3
link to GSA Abstract

Grawe, L.R., Gray, F. 2004. “SPICING” up geoscience education: utilizing innovative partnerships to engage minorities and females in geosciences through inquiry-based collaborative education. Geological Society of America Abstracts with Programs 36: 278
link to GSA Abstract

Grawe, L.R., DeSantis, D.T. 2004. Achieving educational objectives at the Yale Outdoor Education Center: the construction of an innovative nature trail and supplemental educational materials. Society of Conservation Biology 2004 Book of Abstracts
link to SCB Proceedings

Grawe, L.R. 2003. The Paleontology of Dinosaurs Moveable Museum: extending museum educational resources. Journal of
Vertebrate Paleontology
23: 57A
link to SVP Website

Grawe, L.R. 2002. Paleontological museum exhibits: How effectively are principles of evolution communicated to the public? Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology 22: 60A
link to SVP Website

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