Classifying Organisms An organism is generally referred to as any living thing. More specifically any thing that has “cells”. This includes the smallest of organisms, the single celled bacteria, all the way to the largest redwood tree or Blue Whale.
Classification Practice Get a piece of paper and a pen or pencil and get ready. The next few slides have 14 different organisms for you to classify. You are to divide those 14 organisms into two groups. They don’t have to be equal groups.
CLASSIFICATION PRACTICE! Each organism will have a letter underneath it. You will first determine the name of your two classification groups. For example, you may choose to divide your organisms into to groups of red and green. You will then you will put the letter or your organism in the classification column where it belongs. A
FOR EXAMPLE These organisms have been classified by their color. RED GREEN
Are You Ready?
Take a few minutes and on your piece of paper classify these organisms into two groups of similar characteristics.
One Possible Solution Animals Plants ????
Did you have some problems? There were actually several different ways to go about classifying these 14 organisms. You might have done color, shape, size, number of legs… the possibilities are endless. You might have found one or two that really did not fit into either of your two classifications. So what should you do when this happens? Make a new classification of course!
Our modern classification system originated with two main classifications, plants and animals. Over the years, scientist came up with certain “plants” that really did not act like plants; they couldn’t make their own food. So the kingdom Fungi was formed. ANIMAL PLANTS
PROTISTA When microscopes were invented, scientist discovered new single celled organisms. Some were animal-like, some were plant like and some were both. This lead to the creation of the Kingdom Protista.
Who Needs a Classification System? When you go to the grocery store, how do know how to find the milk? When you go to the clothing store, how do you know where to look for your favorite brand? When you go to the movie store, how do you find the movie you’re looking for?
You need a classification system to organize things. A classification system is a tool that allows scientists to study similar organisms to learn more about how certain organisms work and function.
For example; if you wanted to find information on a new organism that you just discovered, you could look at organisms with similar traits and could come up with some good ideas as to what it eats, what its mating habits are, or any other important information you might want to find.
The Modern System The modern classification system was developed by the Swedish scientist Carolus Linnaeus in the mid 1700’s. As Linnaeus created his method of classification, he considered many things. Some characteristics he used to classify organisms were outside appearance, internal organs, and how body systems worked. Modern scientists are still using most of Linnaeus’s classification system.
Conclusion The classification system for organisms have been around for a long time. It has endured several changes and is quite complex. Without it modern biology could not exist. It would be like going into Wal-Mart and finding that everything was spread out all over the store.