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Copy of Characteristics of Life!

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Skot Madej

on 6 February 2015

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Transcript of Copy of Characteristics of Life!

Characteristics of Life
Living or not living?
What are some ways that you can determine if something is alive or not?

With your elbow buddy brainstorm a list on your whiteboard.
There are 8 Characteristics of Life
- Single celled organisms have everything they need to be self sufficient
- That means that all of life's processes and all of these characteristics can be found in one cell! WOW!

- In multicellular organisms, cells become more and more specialized until some cells only do certain things
Living Things are Composed of Cells
- Both molecular and cellular organization

- Living things must be able to organize simple substances into complex ones
Ex.- Our body takes what we eat and converts it to energy that we can use

- Living things organize cells at several levels
Tissues - a group of cells that perform a common function
Organ - a group of tissues that perform a common function
Organ System - a group of organs that perform a common function
Organism - any complete living thing
Living Things Have Different Levels of Organization
1. Living Things are Composed of Cells
2. Living Things have Different Levels of Organization
3. Living Things use Energy
4. Living Things Respond to their Environment
5. Living Things Grow
6. Living Things Reproduce
7. Living things adapt to their Environment
8. Living things maintain homeostasis
Living Things use Energy
- Living things take in energy and use it for maintenance and growth
- some organisms get their energy from the sun and others get their energy from breaking down molecules as food, either way all organisms need energy to survive!
Living Things Respond to their Environment
- Living things will make changes in response to living things in their environment
Ex.- If you touch a frog it's response will be to jump away

- A behavior is a complex set of responses
Ex.- Behaviors must be learned or inherited from parents
Living Things Grow
Cell division - the orderly formation of new cells.

Cell enlargement - the increase in size of a cell. Cells grow to a certain size and then divide.

- An organism gets larger as the number of its cells increases.
Living Things Reproduce
- Reproduction is not essential for the survival of individual organisms, but must occur for a species to survive
Living Things Adapt to their Environment
Key Terms:
Biotic - describes something that is living or once was
Ex. - cat, tree, paper, cut flowers

Abiotic - describes something that is not living and never was living
Ex. - an aluminum can, styrofoam cup
There are many things in our world that have one or more of the characteristics of life but not all of them...
1. Name a non-living thing that uses energy
2. Name a non-living thing that grows
Is it Aliiive?!
Determine what in the following list is biotic and what is abiotic, record the answers in your notebook:
Car Milk Acorns
Textbook Tortilla Shell Plastic Bag
Bonfire Mirror Soap Bubbles
Squirrel Cell Phone Scarecrow
Potato Chip Jellyfish Beetle
Classification of Living Things
Due to the amount of living things on earth, it's important that we have a system to help classify them. We classify all living things on earth into two different groups:
Eukaryotes: An organism whose cells contain complex structures enclosed in membranes
Examples of Eukaryotes: Plants, animals, fungi

Prokaryote: A group of single celled organisms that lack a nucleus and organelles


Homeostasis is the ability of an organism's body to maintain a stable internal environment.
Living things Maintain Homeostasis
Ex.- Temperature control in the body, if the body gets too hot from exercise the body works to cool itself off through sweat production, dilation of pores, and efforts to return breathing and heart rate to normal
- Adaptations are traits that give an organism an advantage in a certain environment.

- Variation of individuals is important for a healthy species.
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