This printable is aligned with CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.9-10.2, CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.9-10.3, CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.9-10.5, CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RST.9-10.2, CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RST.9-10.3, and CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RST.9-10.5 Passage #1 - Lexile 1060L, 296 words Passage #2 - Lexile 840L, 219 words

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Science Reading Living Things - Grade 10 (Grade 10)

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In order to keep all living things organized, a system of classification has been developed so that scientists know exactly where to find every living organisms. This system, called taxonomy, organizes living things by common characteristics.

The original classification scheme was proposed by Aristotle. He said that all living things were either plants or animals. Further, they were then classified by where they lived. Birds would be air animals, fish were water animals, and lions were land animals. The same held true for plants.

As you can imagine, this was slightly confusing. After all, birds do fly, but they also hunt for food on the ground. In the 18th century, a Swedish botanist named Carolus Linnaeus devised a system that is still in practice today. He put organisms into similar categories based upon their similar traits. Prior to Linnaeus' work, organisms were classified be their observable traits. For example, birds and butterflies were considered relatives because they can both fly. Since the discovery of DNA and the advent of molecular testing, it has been possible to better see the relationships between organisms and fine tune the system of classification.

To make things even clearer, Linnaeus invented a naming system that eliminates confusion when scientists are discussing living things. He assigned, based upon common traits, a specific naming structure for each organism.

Linnaeus proposed the following scheme for every organism. It goes from the most generic group to the most specific.

It is possible for more than one organism to belong to the same family (such as cats) but only one type of organism can have a particular species (such as Felis domesticus - the common house cat). Every organism has a genus and species, a system Linnaeus called binomial nomenclature.
What is the purpose of this passage?
  1. to describe the organization of living things
  2. to summarize the work of Aristotle
  3. to classify different types of living organisms
  4. to explain the characteristics of living things
The author describes Aristotle's plan for organizing living things. What was the problem with Aristotle's system of organization?
  1. It assumed plants and animals were the same.
  2. It grouped birds with fish.
  3. Many animals fit in more than one category.
  4. Many animals were incorrectly classified as plants.
According to the passage, how did Linnaeus organize his list of classifications?
  1. from least specific to most specific
  2. from oldest to youngest
  3. from biggest to smallest
  4. from least complicated to most complicated
Pictograph - Mushroom Fungi are a very diverse and interesting group of organisms. They are actually more closely related to humans than they are to plants. This is because of how they obtain their energy. They are consumers that decompose dead organisms. They absorb nutrients across their skin. Without fungi, there would be a very thick layer of dead organisms covering the entire surface of the earth.

Fungi are decomposers. This means they break down dead organisms and recycle their nutrients back into the ecosystem. Mushrooms, mold, and liverworts are all examples of fungi. They tend to live in dark, moist places, such as on the forest floor or in the back of the refrigerator.

Fungi are made of hail-like structures called hyphae. These hyphae not only make up an individual fungus, but also can travel for meters and produce others. The next time you are walking through the forest and come across a mushroom growing on a dead log, look around for others. Chances are there will more close by. These organisms are all connected through their hyphae.

Some fungi are beneficial to humans. The antibiotic penicillin is derived from a fungus called Penicillium and blue cheese is made using a fungus to add the taste to it. The yeast used to make bread is also an example of a fungus.
Which choice best describes how the author chose to organize this passage?
  1. cause and effect
  2. compare and contrast
  3. description and definition
  4. problem and solution
The author uses the term HYPHAE. Based on the information in the passage, what are HYPHAE?
  1. tops of mushrooms
  2. hail-like structures
  3. types of penicillin
  4. decomposers
Based on the information in the passage, what problem do fungi help solve?
  1. They provide share for smaller plants.
  2. They provide energy to humans.
  3. They clean pollutants in the air.
  4. They keep dead organisms from filling the Earth.

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