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    Ecosystems and Food Chains/Webs
    By ConnieWI

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    I love your idea for the zoo. I might give it a try and put my idea on hold.

    My ecosystem unit is slightly different because we focus on food chains/webs. I though I would share it with you and maybe you can incorporate it into what you are doing.

    First, I collect all kinds of habitat books from the library. For about a week before I begin the unit, students read as many as they can so they are familiar with a variety of habitats.

    Then, students work in pairs, choose a habitat, gather the books about that habitat, and make a list of plants and animals that live in that habitat. At the same time, I am teaching about food chains and food webs.

    When the student's lists are completed, individuals design their own food chain. I take a piece of 12" x 18" paper and cut it into two 6" x 18 inch parts. These two parts are laid and taped end to end to form a long 6" x 36" sheet. On this, the students draw, outline in a thin black marker, and color the plants and animals in their food chain. At the very end, they leave enough room for their food chain poem. Here is an example:

    The Meadow
    These are the young owlets
    that were fed by the mother owl,
    that caught the slithering snake,
    that swallowed the bumpy toad,
    that gobbled the milkweed beetle,
    that fed on the milkweed pod,
    that grows in the meadow where Jessica lives.

    The title is the habitat and the body of the poem is the plants and animals shown in the food chain poster. This is also a good way to use the thesaurus to find verbs that are specific and make a clear picture. The last line repeats the habitat and the child's name.

    Hope I have helped!!

    View the original thread this idea was posted on



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