Just like the fun experiments mentioned above, there are so many engaging ways that kids can learn about the scientific method! A long-term experiment that students will look forward to monitoring every day is a classroom garden, with some plants by a window (sunlight) and others in a darker area of the room. The hypothesis for that one being: Will plants grow better by the sunlight or away from it?
Recent environmental studies show that disturbed ecosystems can have cascading failures, as the removal of one part of a food chain can in , and entire ecosystems can go extinct. Cascades in today's world usually begin when the apex predator is removed (by humans, and called a ), but not always. Those cascading events can happen in aquatic and environments. Food chains are essentially energy chains , and the more complex they are, the more energy is required to sustain them. The leading hypothesis for why is also an energy-scarcity dynamic. Also, the most compelling findings that I have encountered regarding degenerative disease in humans shows that if individual cells no longer have their nutritional needs met by the organism, they stop acting out their role as specialized cells and “.” It may be difficult-to-impossible for scientists to reconstruct and test cascading failure hypotheses in ancient mass extinction events, but they may have played a major role in them, if not the dominant role.
A hypothesis is the first step in the scientific method
The genetic testing that has been performed on humanity in the past generation has shown that the founder group’s pattern of migration was to continually spread out, and once the original settlement covered the continents, people did not move much at all, at least until Europe began conquering the world (and there were some ). There is little sign of warfare in those early days of migration, and the leading hypothesis is that people moved to the next valley rather than be close enough to fight each other. Any conflict would have been easily resolved by moving farther out, where more easily killed animals lived. Also, in those virgin continents, people need not have roamed far to obtain food. Today, an !Kung woman will carry her child more than 7,000 kilometers before the child can walk for himself/herself. If an !Kung woman bears twins, it is her duty to pick which child to murder, because she cannot afford to carry two. That demonstrates the limitations of today’s hunter-gatherer lifestyle, but in those halcyonic days of invading virgin continents (which had to be the Golden Age of the Hunter-Gatherer), those kinds of practices probably waned and bands grew fast. When they they split, and the new group moved to new lands where the animals, again, never saw people before. Unlike the case with humans, there would not have been a grapevine so that animals told their neighbors about the new super-predator. The first time that those megafauna saw humans was probably their last time. It is very likely, just as with all predators for all time, and as can be seen with historical hunting events such or , that those bands soon took to killing animals, harvesting the best parts, and moving on. To them it would not have been a “blitzkrieg,” but more like kids in candy stores. After a few thousand years of grabbing meat whenever the fancy took them, or perhaps less, those halcyonic days were over as the far coasts of Australia were reached and the easy meat was gone. When that land bridge formed to Tasmania about 43 kya, people crossed and were able to , until all the megafauna was gone on Tasmania. They also may have worked their way through the food chain, in which the first kills were the true mother lode. Nobody even deigned to raise a spear at anything less than a until they were gone. Then they started killing smaller prey, which eventually did wise up and were harder to kill, so humans had to work at it again and the brief golden age was over. The as they shaped the new continent to their liking, maybe recreating the savanna conditions that they left in Africa, may have also been used to flush out animals if they began to avoid humans.