CER Evolution Claim Evidence Reasoning NGSS MS-LS4-1 HS-LS4-1 Google Ready


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Students learn how Scientists have named a new species that may have been the direct ancestor of modern humans through a C.E.R. (Claim Evidence Reasoning) graphic organizer. This is great for getting your students to explain phenomena in a meaningful way and it allows you as the instructor to adequately assess their understanding of concepts. The students figure out what the “Claim” is in the article, they then use data that supports the claim in the “Evidence” section, draw visual evidence and then explain why the evidence supports the claim in the “Reasoning” section. 

The article has the following concepts:


Homo bodoensis

Homo sapiens

Homo heidelbergensis or Homo rhodesiensis

Direct ancestor



Genetic Evidence


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What you get with this resource:

-2 graphic organizer PDF’s

-2 Google Ready graphic organizers

-Anchor chart to scaffold and support students with CER

-Article Link in Google Slideshow

-Google Classroom Tutorial

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Evolution Claim Evidence Reasoning MS-LS4-1 HS-LS4-2 HS-LS4-1 MS-LS4-2

This is great for a current event, sub plan, homework, critical thinking, scaffolding and/or reinforcement of concepts!

You get a CER graphic organizer, an editable key, the article, tips for CER and the link to the website in the article.

NGSS for Middle School:

LS4.A:  Evidence of Common Ancestry and Diversity

•The collection of fossils and their placement in chronological order (e.g., through the location of the sedimentary layers in which they are found or through radioactive dating) is known as the fossil record. It documents the existence, diversity, extinction, and change of many life forms throughout the history of life on Earth. (MS-LS4-1)

•Anatomical similarities and differences between various organisms living today and between them and organisms in the fossil record, enable the reconstruction of evolutionary history and the inference of lines of evolutionary descent. (MS-LS4-2)

NGSS for High School:

LS4.A:  Evidence of Common Ancestry and Diversity

•Genetic information provides evidence of evolution. DNA sequences vary among species, but there are many overlaps; in fact, the ongoing branching that produces multiple lines of descent can be inferred by comparing the DNA sequences of different organisms. Such information is also derivable from the similarities and differences in amino acid sequences and from anatomical and embryological evidence. (HS-LS4-1)

NGSS Science and Engineering Practices:

SEP’s Asking Questions and Defining Problem:

Students at any grade level should be able to ask questions of each other about the texts they read, the features of the phenomena they observe, and the conclusions they draw from their models or scientific investigations. 

Engaging in Argument from Evidence:

In 9–12 builds on K–8 experiences and progresses to using appropriate and sufficient evidence and scientific reasoning to defend and critique claims and explanations about the natural and designed world(s). Arguments may also come from current scientific or historical episodes in science.

CCC’s: Patterns

Observed patterns of forms and events guide organization and classification, and they prompt questions about relationships and the factors that influence them.


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