Students will certainly learn about food chains, pyramids, and also food webs. Student will also learn how all of nature is connected and dependent on every other.

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A food chain shows exactly how each living point gets the food. Some pets eat plants and some pets eat other animals. For example, a simple food chain links the trees and also shrubs, the giraffes (that eat trees and shrubs), and the lions (that eat the giraffes). Each connect in this chain is food for the next link. All food chains begin with power from the sun. This energy is caught by plants. Thus the living component of a food chain always starts through plant life and ends with an animal.


plants are referred to as producers because they are able to usage light energy from the sun to create food (sugar) from carbon dioxide and water. Animals cannot make their own food so they should eat tree and/or other animals. Castle are dubbed consumers. There are three teams of consumers. Animals that eat only plants are referred to as herbivores (or main consumers). Pets that eat other animals are dubbed carnivores. Carnivores that eat herbivores space called secondary consumers, and carnivores the eat other carnivores are referred to as tertiary consumers. Animals and people who eat both animals and plants are dubbed omnivores. Then there are decomposers (bacteria, fungi, and even some worms), which feeding on disc matter. These decomposers rate up the decaying procedure that publication mineral salts ago into the food chain for absorption through plants together nutrients.

In a food chain, energy is passed indigenous one connect to another. As soon as a herbivore eats, only a fraction of the energy (that it gets from the plant food) becomes brand-new body mass; the remainder of the power is lost as rubbish or offered up by the herbivore to carry out that is life processes (e.g., movement, digestion, reproduction). Therefore, as soon as the herbivore is consumed by a carnivore, that passes just a tiny amount of complete energy (that it has actually received) to the carnivore. The the power transferred native the herbivore to the carnivore, some power will it is in “wasted” or “used up” by the carnivore. The carnivore then needs to eat numerous herbivores to gain enough energy to grow. Since of the huge amount of power that is shed at each link, the amount of power that is moved decreases each time. The additional along the food chain friend go, the less food (and for this reason energy) stays available.

Food chain can likewise be represented in different forms such as this pyramid.


The above energy pyramid shows numerous trees and shrubs giving food and energy come giraffes. Keep in mind that as we go up, there are fewer giraffes 보다 trees and also shrubs and even fewer lions than giraffes. Together we go further along a food chain, there are fewer and fewer consumers. In other words, a large mass that living points at the basic is required to support a few at the top. Plenty of herbivores are necessary to support a couple of carnivores. Many food chains have no more than four or five links. Over there cannot it is in too numerous links in a solitary food chain since the animals at the finish of the chain would not get enough food (and hence, energy) to remain alive.

Most pets are component of much more than one food chain and also eat an ext than one type of food in order to accomplish their food and also energy requirements. These interconnected food chains form a food web. Food chains have the right to get complex because animals usually eat a variety of food.

Food Chains

enough strips that colored file so that each student has actually four, one on i beg your pardon to draw the sun, one on which to attract a producer, one on which to attract a major consumer and one on i m sorry to attract a an additional consumer.

Food Web

empty cards colored pencils Yarn
an organism that eats mostly meat Consumer: one organism, typically an animal, the feeds on tree or other pets Food chain: a sequence of organisms i ordered it in such a means that each feeds top top the organism listed below it in the chain and also serves together a resource of food for the organism over Food web: every the connected or linked food chains within an ecological ar Herbivore: an organism that eats mainly plants Predator: an pet that lives by killing and eating other pets Producer: an organism, typically a plant, that converts sunlight energy into living material; normally the first step on the food chain or food net or an initial trophic level the a food pyramid

Cut enough strips of document so the each college student will have four. Reduced the yarn right into pieces that will certainly connect varieties that communicate with every other.

Food Chains


on the blackboard, write the complying with headings: Producers, main Consumers, secondary Consumers, and Tertiary Consumers. Ask students to name some types under each heading. Then show how to produce a food chain, using some of the varieties listed.

as soon as students understand, have actually them draw the sun, a producer, a major consumer, a second consumer, and a tertiary customer on each of their four strips.

These have to then it is in interlocked and glued together to do a chain of species in i beg your pardon one eats the other. They can be hung native the rafters to show the diversity of food chains that exist in nature.

Food Webs

Note: This task can be included for enlarge students.

Start similar to food chains, placing the 3 headings on the board. Have actually students name types under every heading and also tell something about each species’ lifestyle. Then have actually each student pick a species from the board, write its name on a card, and draw a snapshot of it. (Check every one off the list together it’s chosen, to make certain it’s only offered once). Then the student must poke a hole close to the bottom that the card.

start the food web by it is registered a picture of the sunlight at one next of the wall. (If you put it top top a wall, it deserve to be saved). Have actually the college student who attracted producers carry their cards up. Cave these in a horizontal line next to the sun and also attach every one to the sunlight with a piece of yarn to present the connection. Then have actually students who attracted primary consumers bring their cards up. Hang these in a horizontal line above the producers.


One in ~ a time, discuss which producer they would certainly each consume. Attach yarn from each primary customer to the producer it would consume. (Remember the most animals eat an ext than one sort of food). The students will start to check out how facility a food internet is. Next add the second and tertiary consumer in rows over the producers. Again, comment on the connections between primary, secondary, and also tertiary consumers. Next add the scavengers: hyenas (can be predators and scavengers) and vultures. Finally, comment on decomposers—bacteria, fungi and worms that feed ~ above the disc matter—and their duty in the food web. Students should now have actually a finish understanding that the intricacy of the food web. At appropriate is an instance of a food web.

All living points need power to continue to be alive. This energy originates from the sun. Plants make their food from energy from the sun. Pets get their energy from the food castle eat. Pets depend on various other living points for food. Some pets eat tree while others eat other animals. This pass of energy from the sun to plants to animals to other animals is referred to as a food chain.

execute you understand why there are more herbivores than carnivores? just how do humans fit in the food chain? What might happen if an animal not aboriginal to one area is brought into the local food chain? What could happen if you remove an pet from the food chain? How can sun and rain impact the food chain? Drought? Why is a food internet a an ext accurate depiction of nature than a food chain or pyramid?

1. Net of Life


students will understand the principle of a food chain and also demonstrate a grassland’s food chain.


images of animals, river, tree, grass, sunlight A ball of yarn/spool of twining


review The good Kapok Tree, by Lynne Cherry. Ask college student to surname all the different animals that room dependent on the one tree.

offer each participant a picture.

first demonstrate a food chain, a simple interdependence, through linking the student through the sun card (the source of all energy) to the student with the grass map to the student through the zebra map to the student through the lion card.

present the results of guy on the simple food chain. Male can:

cut trees (no trees, nothing for grazers to eat, grazers will certainly die, lions and also other predators will have nothing come eat. Castle will start to eat our livestock.) hunting in excess (If we kill the lions, there will be too plenty of zebras and also they will need more grass. They will certainly eat the grass from our pasturelands.)

Balance is key! explain that the interaction in a grasslands device are more complicated than this. For example, the sun offers for much more than simply grass, and lions don’t just eat zebras.

have actually the participants currently stand in a circle, the end of order (i.e. Not all of the producers together, climate the primary consumers, climate the second consumers, etc.)

provide the round of string come the person with the sun. Climate ask that human being to happen the yarn come the human with a card of one organism the the sunlight supports. If the sun supports much more than one biology in the circle, pass the string earlier to the sun and from the sunlight to the various other organism the it supports.

continue by questioning the tree which organisms they can support and so on.

save going v the chain till you acquire to the peak consumers. The string will certainly be a tangled net in the middle of the circle. Food chains room complicated, and also the balance they create is essential.

Again discuss the effects of guy on the net by having actually students drop your string if man’s influence kills off their organism. Because that example, the influence of overhunting will reason the lions to drop their strings. What happens?

Possible inquiries

carry out you understand why over there are more herbivores than carnivores? What if one pet from the food chain disappeared? What about one level of the food chain? Producers? Decomposers? Herbivores? just how do human beings fit in the food chain? What might happen if an animal not native to one area is carried into the local food chain? What might happen if you remove an animal from the food chain? How deserve to sun and rain influence the food chain? Drought? Why is a food net a more accurate depiction of nature 보다 a food chain or pyramid?

2. Food Chain Tag

This task requires a large open area. In a course of 25 to 40 students, select three to five to be predators and seven to ten to it is in plant-eaters. The remainder will certainly be plants. This to represent a well balanced system where plants are an ext plentiful than plant-eaters, plant-eaters an ext plentiful than predators, and predators are the least plentiful. The student can choose which plant-eaters and also predators will be in their groups. (Example: Grevy’s zebras room plant-eaters and lions space predators).

Each team selects hand-signals the will identify them from the other groups. (Example: the plants may want to hold their hands out to their sides to stand for leaves, the plant-eaters (oryx) may organize their hand on the heads to represent horns, and the predators (lions) may organize their hand up favor paws with the claws showing). The predators try to tags the plant-eaters who try to tags the plants. Because predators decompose as soon as they die and become fertilizer, the plants shot to sign the predators. Once you are tagged, you revolve into whatever tagged you.

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~ a duration of time, avoid the video game to check out how many plants, plant-eaters, and predators space left. Play must resume yet should be quit a couple of times before the finish to recognize what has actually happened and also why. After playing a couple of rounds of the game, choose one of the tree to re-enter the game as a human. The rules because that the person are different: the human have the right to tag anyone, but no one can tag the human. Each time the person tags someone, the player becomes another human. See exactly how long it takes before all players have actually become adjusted into humans.

comment on the changes and relationships that the game illustrates. Some questions for discussion could include:

What wake up to the plants and plant-eaters if numerous of the predators have actually been caught? What happens to the tree if countless of them have actually been caught? What wake up when human beings use too much of the food chain? How deserve to we keep that native happening?