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Life History of a Strange Tree: The Strangler Fig

Grade Level: 6-8

Introduction: Strangler figs are one of the most iconic trees and are a keystone species of the tropical montane cloud forests of Monteverde, Costa Rica.  Students will view strangler figs using the Canopy in the Clouds media and will become familiar with the fascinating life history of this interesting plant as they work to sequence the events of its life cycle.

Objectives: Students will be able to: 1) provide a definition for the phrase “life cycle,” 2) identify a strangler fig tree and 3) summarize the life cycle stages of the strangler fig tree.

National Science Standards: Structure and function in living systems (C); regulation and behavior (C); populations and ecosystems (C); diversity and adaptations of organisms (C).

Time: 50 minutes (5 minutes for opening, 15 minutes for Part 1 of handout, 15 minutes for Part 2 of handout, 5 minutes for Part 3 of handout, 10 minutes for closing)


Lesson Plan: PDF | DOC

Worksheets: PDF | DOC

Assessment: PDF | DOC

Life Cycle Cards: PDF | DOC

Related Plans:

  1. Life History of a Strange Tree: The Strangler Fig
  2. What's a Niche?
  3. Symbiosis, Mutualism, Parasitism and More
  4. Cloud Forest Adaptations
  5. Plant Defense
  6. Animal Diversity
  7. Living History Project


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