Teaching Speciation Using Anole Lizards
This playlist can be used to teach several core concepts of natural selection and speciation by connecting students to actual research on Caribbean anoles. The topics covered include adaptation, natural selection by predation, speciation, and reproductive barriers. The activities provide several opportunities for students to collect and analyze data, use DNA to construct phylogenetic trees, and conduct experiments to test hypotheses.
By completing the resources in this playlist, students will be able to:
- Collect data, construct graphs, and analyze data to make conclusions about the effects of natural selection in different contexts.
- Use data to test conflicting hypotheses (convergent vs. divergent evolution) regarding patterns of species distribution.
This playlist can be used in AP/IB Biology and undergraduate college courses. Implementing this playlist should take about seven to eight 50-minute class periods.