Students will certainly learn around food chains, pyramids, and also food webs. College student will also learn how every one of nature is connected and dependent on every other.

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A food chain shows exactly how each living point gets that food. Some pets eat plants and also some pets eat various other animals. For example, a straightforward food chain web links the trees and also shrubs, the giraffes (that eat trees and shrubs), and also the lions (that eat the giraffes). Each attach in this chain is food because that the next link. Every food chains start with power from the sun. This energy is caught by plants. Therefore the living component of a food chain always starts through plant life and also ends v an animal.


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

In a food chain, energy is passed indigenous one link to another. As soon as a herbivore eats, only a fraction of the energy (that it gets from the plant food) becomes new body mass; the remainder of the energy is shed as rubbish or provided up by the herbivore to carry out that life procedures (e.g., movement, digestion, reproduction). Therefore, as soon as the herbivore is eaten by a carnivore, the passes only a little amount of total energy (that it has actually received) come the carnivore. Of the power transferred native the herbivore to the carnivore, some power will be “wasted” or “used up” by the carnivore. The carnivore then has to eat countless herbivores to obtain enough energy to grow. Since of the huge amount of energy that is shed at every link, the quantity of energy that is moved decreases every time. The additional along the food chain girlfriend go, the much less food (and hence energy) remains available.

Food chains can additionally be stood for in different forms such as this pyramid.


The over energy pyramid shows plenty of trees and shrubs offering food and also energy to giraffes. Note that together we walk up, there space fewer giraffes than trees and shrubs and even fewer lions than giraffes. As we go additional along a food chain, there room fewer and also fewer consumers. In various other words, a big mass the living points at the basic is forced to support a few at the top. Plenty of herbivores are needed to assistance a couple of carnivores. Most food chains have actually no much more than 4 or 5 links. There cannot be too many links in a solitary food chain since the animals at the finish of the chain would not get enough food (and hence, energy) to continue to be alive.

Most animals are part of much more than one food chain and eat an ext than one kind of food in order to satisfy their food and energy requirements. These interconnected food chains type a food web. Food chains deserve to get complicated because pets usually eat a range of food.

Food Chains

enough strips of colored document so that each student has actually four, one on i m sorry to attract the sun, one on i beg your pardon to draw a producer, one on i beg your pardon to attract a major consumer and also one on i beg your pardon to draw a secondary consumer.

Food Web

blank cards colored pencils Yarn
one organism the eats greatly meat Consumer: one organism, commonly an animal, that feeds on plants or other pets Food chain: a succession of organisms i ordered it in such a way that every feeds top top the organism listed below it in the chain and also serves together a resource of food because that the organism over Food web: every the associated or linked food chains in ~ an ecological neighborhood Herbivore: one organism the eats greatly plants Predator: an pet that resides by killing and eating other animals Producer: an organism, usually a plant, the converts sunlight power into living material; generally the an initial step ~ above the food chain or food web or very first trophic level of a food pyramid

Cut enough strips of file so the each college student will have four. Reduced the yarn into pieces that will certainly connect species that connect with every other.

Food Chains


top top the blackboard, write the adhering to headings: Producers, major Consumers, an additional Consumers, and also Tertiary Consumers. Ask college student to name some varieties under every heading. Then demonstrate how to produce a food chain, using several of the species listed.

when students understand, have them attract the sun, a producer, a primary consumer, a second consumer, and a tertiary consumer on each of their four strips.

These need to then it is in interlocked and also glued together to do a chain of species in which one eats the other. They can be hung native the rafters to illustrate the diversity that food chains the exist in nature.

Food Webs

Note: This activity can be included for older students.

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

start the food web by it is registered a picture of the sun at one next of the wall. (If you put it ~ above a wall, it have the right to be saved). Have actually the students who drew producers lug their cards up. Cave these in a horizontal line alongside the sun and also attach each one come the sunlight with a item of yarn to display the connection. Then have students who attracted primary consumers lug their cards up. Cave these in a horizontal line over the producers.


One at a time, talk about which producers they would each consume. Connect yarn from each primary customer to the producer it would certainly consume. (Remember that most pets eat an ext than one kind of food). The students will begin to view how complex a food net is. Next include the secondary and tertiary consumer in rows over the producers. Again, discuss the connections in between primary, secondary, and also tertiary consumers. Next add the scavengers: hyenas (can it is in predators and scavengers) and vultures. Finally, comment on decomposers—bacteria, fungi and also worms the feed on the decaying matter—and their function in the food web. Students must now have a complete understanding of the complexity of the food web. At best is an example of a food web.

All living things need energy to continue to be alive. This energy originates from the sun. Plants do their food from power from the sun. Pets get their energy from the food lock eat. Animals depend on various other living things for food. Some pets eat tree while others eat various other animals. This happen of energy from the sun to plants to animals to other pets is dubbed a food chain.

do you know why over there are more herbivores 보다 carnivores? how do people fit in the food chain? What could happen if an pet not native to an area is carried into the neighborhood food chain? What could happen if you eliminate an animal from the food chain? How deserve to sun and also rain affect the food chain? Drought? Why is a food net a more accurate explicate of nature 보다 a food chain or pyramid?

1. Web of Life


student will recognize the principle of a food chain and demonstrate a grassland’s food chain.


pictures of animals, river, tree, grass, sunlight A round of yarn/spool of twine


check out The great Kapok Tree, by Lynne Cherry. Ask students to name all the different pets that space dependent ~ above the one tree.

give each participant a picture.

first demonstrate a food chain, a basic interdependence, through linking the student with the sunlight card (the resource of every energy) come the student v the grass card to the student v the zebra card to the student with the lion card.

show the impacts of male on the basic food chain. Male can:

cut trees (no trees, nothing because that grazers come eat, grazers will certainly die, lions and also other predators will have nothing to eat. Castle will start to eat our livestock.) hunt in overabundance (If we death the lions, there will certainly be too many zebras and also they will certainly need much more grass. They will eat the grass from our pasturelands.)

Balance is key! describe that the interactions in a grasslands system are more complicated than this. Because that example, the sun provides for an ext than just grass, and lions don’t only eat zebras.

have actually the participants currently stand in a circle, out of bespeak (i.e. Not every one of the producer together, climate the major consumers, climate the an additional consumers, etc.)

give the ball of string come the human being with the sun. Then ask that person to pass the yarn come the person with a map of one organism the the sunlight supports. If the sunlight supports an ext than one biology in the circle, happen the string earlier to the sun and from the sunlight to the other organism that it supports.

proceed by asking the plants which organisms they deserve to support and so on.

store going v the chain till you gain to the top consumers. The string will certainly be a tangled web in the center of the circle. Food chains are complicated, and also the balance they produce is essential.

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

Possible concerns

perform you understand why over there are much more herbivores 보다 carnivores? What if one animal from the food chain disappeared? What around one level that the food chain? Producers? Decomposers? Herbivores? just how do humans fit in the food chain? What could happen if an animal not aboriginal to an area is brought into the neighborhood food chain? What could happen if you eliminate an pet from the food chain? How can sun and rain impact the food chain? Drought? Why is a food net a much more accurate explicate of nature than a food chain or pyramid?

2. Food Chain Tag

This activity requires a big open area. In a course of 25 come 40 students, choose three to 5 to it is in predators and also seven come ten to be plant-eaters. The remainder will be plants. This to represent a balanced system whereby plants are much more plentiful 보다 plant-eaters, plant-eaters more plentiful than predators, and predators space the the very least plentiful. The students can pick which plant-eaters and also predators will be in their groups. (Example: Grevy’s zebras space plant-eaters and lions are predators).

Each group selects hand-signals that will identify them from the other groups. (Example: the plants may want to organize their hands the end to your sides to stand for leaves, the plant-eaters (oryx) may hold their hands on the heads to represent horns, and also the predators (lions) may host their hands up choose paws through the claws showing). The predators try to tag the plant-eaters who shot to tag the plants. Due to the fact that predators decompose when they die and also become fertilizer, the plants try to tags the predators. Once you space tagged, you turn into whatever tagged you.

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after ~ a period of time, stop the game to view how plenty of plants, plant-eaters, and also predators are left. Play need to resume yet should be quit a couple of times before the finish to identify what has happened and also why. After playing a few rounds the the game, select one that the tree to re-enter the game as a human. The rules for the human are different: the human can tag anyone, but no one deserve to tag the human. Every time the person tags someone, the player becomes another human. See just how long that takes prior to all players have become adjusted into humans.

talk about the changes and relationships that the video game illustrates. Some inquiries for discussion can include:

What wake up to the plants and also plant-eaters if countless of the predators have been caught? What wake up to the plants if numerous of them have actually been caught? What happens when people use too much of the food chain? How can we keep that from happening?