Mar 132013

 Purple Loosestrife 11

On March 8th, Dave Williams (GK-12 partner teacher and RET) and Liz Schultheis (GK-12 fellow) presented at the Michigan Science Teachers Association Conference (MSTA). Dave developed this lesson while working as an RET in Jen Lau’s lab, where graduate student Liz studies the role of enemies in plant invasions. The lesson covers invasive species in Michigan (like purple loosestrife and garlic mustard), and guides students through collecting data to test the Enemy Release Hypothesis – which posits that invasive species escape from natural enemies in their invasive range, contributing to their success. In this lesson, students develop predictions, design experimental sampling methods, collect data, and create graphs for data interpretation. Participants were also introduced to Data Nuggets – activities where students can practice making claims based on scientific data.

Lesson and other materials available via these links:

For any additional information about the lesson, or the Enemy Release Hypothesis, please contact Dave ( or Liz (