48 terms

6th Grade - Growing and Flowing Vocabulary

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Abiotic factors
The nonliving factors in an ecosystem. Include things like soil, temperature, amount of water, amount of sunlight. Determines the overall health of an ecosystem. Also determines what kinds of plants and animals will be able to survive and thrive in a habitat.
Biotic Factors
Any part of an ecosystem that is living or that once was living.
Biosphere
Consists of all life on Earth and all parts of the Earth in which life exists, including land, water, and the atmosphere.
Ecosystem
A physical environment with different species that interact with one another and with nonliving things
Biomes
Ecosystems with specific climates that support specific species of plants, animals, and soil organisms adapted to the climate. Examples are the tundra, taiga, desert, grassland, temperate and tropical forests.
Species
A group of organisms that are closely related and can mate to produce fertile offspring
Habitat
Place where an organism lives
Producers
An organism that can capture energy from sunlight and transform it into chemical energy that is stored as food.
Producers are the main food source for all other organisms in a food chain.
Consumers
An organism that obtains energy and nutrients by feeding on other organisms or their remains.
Herbivores
Consumers that eat only plants
Carnivores
Consumers that eat only animals
Omnivores
Consumers that eat both plants and animals.
Scavengers
an organism that feeds on the dead bodies of other organisms.
Decomposers
An organism that feeds on and breaks down dead plant or animal matter.
Symbiosis
a close relationship between two or more species where at least one benifeits.
Commensalism
A relationship between two organisms of different species where one benefits and the other is neither harmed nor benefited
Mutualism
A relationship between two species in which both species benefit
Parasitism
A relationship between two organisms of different species where one benefits and the other is harmed
Natural Selection
A natural process resulting in the evolution of organisms best adapted to the environment.
Adaptation
A trait that helps an organism survive, thrive and reproduce
Evolution
Change in a kind of organism over time; process by which modern organisms have descended from ancient organisms.
Petals
Part of a flower's bloom that are designed to both protect a flower and to attract pollinators.
Sepals
Leaves found at the base of a flower's bloom. Provides protection for the bloom.
Stamens
Male reproductive organs of a plant.
Made up of the anther (which creates pollen) and the filament (which supports the anther).
Anthers
The part of a flower's bloom that produces pollen - the male sex cell that contains half of the material necessary for plants to reproduce.
Pistils
Female reproductive organs of a plant.
Composed of a long tube that pollen must enter in order for a plant to be fertilized.
Cuticle
The waxy, protective layer often found on the leaves of plants. Designed to slow down water loss through evaporation.
Stomata
Small holes or pores found on leaves that allow carbon dioxide to enter a plant and water vapor and oxygen to leave a plant.
Photosynthesis
The process by which green plants and other producers convert sunlight into simple sugars.
Excess glucose is stored in the plant as starches.
Results in the release of oxygen.
Cellular Respiration
The process by which green plants convert stored glucose and starches into energy that can be used for growth.
Results in the release of carbon dioxide.
Glucose
Simple sugar produced by plants during photosynthesis.
Is the main energy source for all plants.
Dormancy
A survival strategy for plants. A time when a plant does not grow because it is waiting for the conditions (temperature, moisture, nutrients in soil) necessary for survival to reappear.
Tropism
The tendency of a plant to turn towards - or away from - positive or negative stimuli.
Gravitropism
The tendency for stems of a plant to grow away from gravity and the roots of a plant to grow towards gravity.
Hydrotropism
The tendency for the roots of a plant to grow towards water.
Phototropism
The tendency for a plant to grow towards light.
Thigmotropism
The tendency of a plant to respond to touch.
Limiting Factors
A condition that prevents the continuing growth of a population in an ecosystem. Can be the number of predators or prey present in an ecosystem. Can also include the amount of space available in an ecosystem.
Food Chain
A diagram used to show the feeding relationship between a single producer and a chain of consumers in an ecosystem.
In a typical food chain, a plant is the producer that is eaten by a consumer, like an insect. Then the insect is eaten by a second consumer, like a bird.
Food Web
A diagram that shows a feeding relationship in which many food chains overlap one another in an ecosystem.
Energy Pyramid
A model used to show the amount of energy available to living things in an ecosystem.
Carbon Cycle
The continuous movement of carbon through the Earth, its atmosphere, and the living things on Earth. Carbon enters the living parts of an ecosystem when plants absorb Carbon Dixoide and turn it into Glucose. Carbon returns to the atmosphere when (1). living things break Glucose down during cellular respiration and (2). living things break down and decay.
Nitrogen Cycle
The continuous movement of nitrogen through Earth, its atmosphere, and the living things on Earth. Nitrogen enters the living parts of an ecosystem when plants absorb it through their roots.
Water Cycle
The continuous movement of water through Earth, its atmosphere, and the living things on Earth. Water is stored in both plants and animals -- and is released as a part of cellular respiration and photosynthesis.
Carbon Sinks
Things in an ecosystem that hold onto carbon for long periods of time. Trees, plants and oceans are all carbon sinks.
Transpiration
The process by which plants pull water to their leaves from their roots.
Xylem
Thin, hairlike tubes inside of a plant that carry water and nutrients from the roots to the leaves.
Phloem
Thin, hairlike tubes inside of a plant that carry sugars from the leaves to the rest of the plant.