Video on the importance of the Fungi! This is an often ignored topic in Biology (the Fungi) and actually one of the most important for the health of the planet ecosystem. I have spoken with many Biology teachers who admit to not really covering the Kingdom Fungi, which is not emphasized in the standards, but should be. Not only could we not survive without them, they are very important economically and medically and most likely hold many more secrets that we have yet to discover. How much do you know about Fungi? Some glow!
Click the link above - LA has some of the best urban parks anywhere. Just a few hundred yards away from traffic jams and stagnant street air are wonderful parks filled with a diverse array of plants and animals as well as great views of the city and surrounding mountains. These are great places for educators and families to visit to learn about Geology and Biology. Lichens can be found on the bark of many trees in these parks. Lichens are indicators of good air quality. If you see them growing, you know you are in an area that is less impacted by smog. Lichen Biology is very important and interesting and a topic rarely discussed in detail, if at all.
Here I am in front of some very nice succulent examples at the LA Zoo. The Zoo has amazing gardens and planters filled with wonderful examples that are mostly ignored by Zoo patrons who are there naturally to focus on the animals. One can find tropical, desert and even cycad gardens.
A great educational opportunity might be missed if you are there and do not notice these. These plants provide a great addition to many subject areas like convergent evolution and basic adaptations for dry climates. Many of these "cactus" are not cactus at all, they have just evolved similar characteristics selected for by their environment.
You can discuss convergence, water loss prevention, as well as economic uses - the Agave sp.