Food Webs


Food Webs (3rd-5th)

Students construct a food web model that represents a simplified version of the Yellowstone ecosystem and consider what would happen to the ecosystem if the food web were disrupted by the removal of a native species and/or the introduction of an invasive species.

SKU: LifSci-FoodWeb Category: Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,


Lesson Overview

Students will:

  • Act as ecologists to build a model of Yellowstone by sorting organism cards into trophic levels, and then arranging them into a food web
  • Share their food webs, discuss webs vs. chains, producers vs. consumers, and decomposers (add to food web) 
  • Model species additions/losses using their food web

Lesson Objectives

Students will be able to:

  • Develop a simple food web model of an ecosystem
  • Use their food web to predict the outcome of a species addition or loss

This lesson is aligned with these Next Generation Science (NGS) Standards.

Standards Covered

Disciplinary Core Idea (DCI)

LS2. Ecosystems: Interactions, Energy, and Dynamics

  • (3rd-5th) LS2.A: Interdependent Relationships in Ecosystems – The food of almost any animal can be traced back to plants. Organisms are related in food webs in which some animals eat plants for food and other animals eat the animals that eat plants, while decomposers restore some materials back to the soil.
  • (3rd-5th) LS2.B: Cycles of Matter and Energy Transfer in Ecosystems – Matter cycles between the air and soil and among organisms as they live and die. 

Science & Engineering Practice (SEP) 

Developing and using models

  • (3rd-5th) Develop and/or use models to describe and/or predict phenomena.

Crosscutting Concept (CCC)

Systems and System Models

  • (3rd-5th) A system can be described in terms of its components and their interactions
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