Last updated: April 6, 2020
What's Living Around Me?
- Grade Level:
- Lower Elementary: Pre-Kindergarten through Second Grade
- Lesson Duration:
- 60 Minutes
- Common Core Standards:
- State Standards:
- NGSS: K. Interdependent Relationships in Ecosystems: Animals, Plants, & Their Environments
ESS3.A : Natural Resources
*Living things need water, air, and resources from the land, and they live in places that have the things they need. Human
What creatures live around me, and what natural resources might they need to continue living?
Students will explore and investigate 4 different areas around campus (mud puddle, rocky parking lot, grass field, tree base) to determine other living things in those areas and what they might need from those areas.
There are living things all around us, other than humans and the obvious animals. With this exploration, kids will discover living macroinvertebrates (an animal without a backbone, which can be seen without a microscope) in the different areas around our school campus. Students must have a beginning, prior knowledge of a T-Chart and know how to copy print.
- 1 clipboard & pencil per child
- 1 blank paper per child
- 4 hula-hoops or small area marker
- 4 flags or stakes with environment label on it (tree base, rock parking lot, mud puddle, grass field) to place at observation sight
- A printed field guide of macroinvertebrates with visuals and labels for reference
Show students a slideshow type view of the different macroinvertebrates, without really telling them too much about them. Then listen and ask for their opinions and feelings when they saw these, and where they think these little invertebrates live. (Know/Want to Know/Learned chart with an opinion/reaction column)
Pictures and slideshow of pacific northwest macroinvertebrates are available at:
|Pre-Lesson Set up: (5 min.)
Intro: (10 min.)
- Macroinvertebrates: an animal lacking a backbone, which can be seen without using a microscope.
- Terrestrial: refers to the land/ground where the macroinvertebrate lives
- Aquatic: refers to the wet/water based area where the macroinvertebrate lives
- Environment: the area surrounding you or around a macroinvertebrate that affects its survival
- Nutrients: substances that must be obtained from the surrounding area for survival
Assessment MaterialsASSESSMENT What’s Living Around Me
As the students are turning in their observation recordings, note how many illustrations they made, and if they are able to describe their drawings or tell the teacher why they found those M.I. in the environment they did.
As students have finished, collect their recording pages. They should have labeled the top of each page with 1 observation location and then drawn 1-3 macroinvertebrates on each page. As students finish, I will have them explain to me quickly something they drew and where they found it, and as time allows I will ask each student a question informally to see what they can tell me about today’s learnings.
Assessment for the activity "What's Living Around Me?"
Supports for Struggling Learners
The teacher or other adults can physically help that child with their recordings. They could also have the environments previously listed on the top of the recording sheet. This is also where the field guide would come in handy! Make sure the teacher is using the vocabulary words during discussions, out in the field, and during assessment too. You could also partner up these struggling students with a helpful peer.
Excelling students could explore a different environmental area at home or even on the school grounds, record their findings, and share their findings with the class. Using a field guide, they could be challenged to find maybe 10 M.I. from the guide.
Related Lessons or Education Materials
Segues into the related lesson: “Macroinvertebrates and their body parts.”