Biology - Year 5
Biology Year 5 is a Biological Sciences curriculum program for Year 5 students. It aligns to the Australian Curriculum Science Understanding:
  • Living things depend on each other and the environment to survive (ACSSU074).
  • Living things have life cycles (ACSSU072).

This curriculum program is currently being updated to align with the Australian Curriculum 9.0. Updated versions will be released in early 2024.
Learning Objectives
In Lessons 1 to 9, students learn about: 
  • how all life started as a single cell. the species that form Earth’s biodiversity.
  • different environments having different physical conditions.
  • natural selection and adaptations. the adaptations to biological conditions in the environment.
  • how living things survive in extreme conditions.
  • how to use the scientific method to find out which animals and plants live in your local environment.
  • how to conduct research in our schoolyard to find out which animals and plants live there and to observe their adaptations.
  • how to explain and evaluate the results of your research about the adaptations of living things in your area. 
Success Criteria
  • Describe the fundamental unit of life – the cell.
  • Explain how single living cells came to be.
  • Explain that all life forms today descended from a single cell.
  • Represent a cell and its contents.
  • Describe how scientists sort and classify the huge diversity of living things.
  • Explain what a species is.
  • Explain what living things need to survive. 
  • Describe how environments differ in their physical locations. 
  • Analyse the physical conditions in a local environment.
  • Explain what natural selection is. Explain what an adaptation is. Investigate how natural selection leads to adaptations.
  • Describe how environments differ in their biological conditions.
  • Explain what adaptations animals and plants have to biological conditions.
  • Represent an animal adapted to biological conditions.
  • Explain why extreme conditions make it difficult to survive.
  • Describe the adaptations to survive in extreme drought and cold.
  • Represent an animal adapted to living in extreme conditions.
  • Research which types of living things live in your chosen environment.
  • Describe which types of living things live in your chosen environment.
  • Describe the ‘plan’ and ‘conduct’ steps of the scientific method.
  • Research which types of living things live in our schoolyard.
  • Observe and record the adaptations that living things in the schoolyard might have.
  • Explain the results of your investigation.
  • Report the results of your investigation.
  • Communicate your findings to an audience. 
Progress Tests
Progress tests are conducted after every second lesson, allowing teachers to monitor student understanding of the concepts taught over the past two lessons and to identify where reteaching is needed. The Teaching Guide contains the testing questions, and the Student Workbook has a section where students write their answers and score themselves.

Structured Research Activity

The Structured Research Activity (SRA) for this unit is: Students observe, record, research and report on at least two plants and two animals and their adaptations. The SRA takes place over two lessons so students can apply the Science Understanding and Science Inquiry Skills covered in the unit. Teachers use the Guide to Making Judgements, which is included in the Teaching Guide, to mark the SRA.

End-of-Unit Assessment

The last lesson is the end-of-unit assessment, which has a variety of question formats (e.g. label the diagram, circle the correct answer) to assess student mastery of content from the unit. The end-of-unit assessment is in the Teaching Guide. Teachers copy the assessment and distribute to students at testing time. 

Lesson Objectives

Success Criteria

I Do

We Do

You Do

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