Teacher Tip: This lesson is designed to allow students to become familiar with vocabulary associated with habitats. Students will also be addressing MS-LS2-1 as they identify the components of various habitats. Students will need a device with internet access in order to complete the mini-research task in the ELABORATE section of the lesson.
To begin the lesson, students will independently address the following question in their student notes sheet:
ENGAGE: What are the 3 things that all living things need?
This is based on the prior lesson in the unit, Needs of Living Things. After 2-3 minutes, students are asked to share their responses with their small groups.
To get students thinking about the different components of a habitat, they will look analyze the following image and answer the questions provided in their notes sheets (see EXPLORE student sample for sample responses):
EXPLORE: Describe the image you see below by answering the questions.
What is this place called? (forest)
What kinds of animals might live here? (squirrels, foxes, birds, deer)
What kinds of plants might live here? (trees, grass, moss)
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Next, show the students a video clip (start-3:50) that explains the main vocabulary words associated with habitats. Stop the video after each word is mentioned and discuss the meaning with the students. When we have agreed upon a definition, they will complete the following in their notes sheet:
EXPLAIN: Watch the Natureworks Habitat video (start-3:50) and answer the questions below.
What is a HABITAT?
What basic needs must a habitat provide?
What happens if an organism’s needs are not met?
What is a COMMUNITY?
Students will work in small groups to research one specific habitat, using the Australian Museum's Wild Kids - Habitats website. They complete the following in their notes sheet using the website provided:
ELABORATE: Read your group’s information regarding a habitat. Complete the table below. When finished, other groups will share their information about their habitats and you will record their information in the table.
I choose the habitat for each group, but assigning it after explaining the task directions. After they have completed their research, each group will send a spokesperson to the front of the room. That person will share the groups' findings with the other students who will use the information to complete their chart.
As a wrap-up, students individually ponder the following by answering the question in their notes sheet:
EVALUATE: Explain what might happen to living things if their habitat is destroyed.