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Elementary Science

Ideas for teaching Food Chains

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Haley Douglas Haley Douglas 605 Points

Hello everyone! Does anyone have and good ideas for teaching food chains in an elementary classroom? Thanks - Haley Douglas

Dylaneigh Reardon Dylaneigh Reardon 1485 Points

Hello, I saw your question about food chains and I found a great method on Pinterst. If you go to that link it will show you the styrofoam cup lesson. This would be a really fun way for students to learn about food chains. Perhaps have they glue the animals on the cups to turn it into a craft project as well. We all know little ones love to learn by doing things hands on. Dylaneigh

Jennifer Marmion Jennifer Marmion 1920 Points

Pinterest has lots of great ideas for teaching food chains to kids. If you're unfamiliar with Pinterest, all you do is type what your looking for (i.e. "Food chains") in the search and it will pull everything it can find. Lots of the stuff is more hands on for the kids too, which I'm sure they would love!

Brittney Brookhart Brittney Brookhart 850 Points

I have always loved science and learning about food chains. I think Arlene's lessons she found on food chains are a great way to teach students. I think that it introduces the animals well and then allows them to relate it the the world around them.

Laud Gaba Laud Gaba 1090 Points

You could start off with a great true story about food chains that will just hook them in...Cats in Parachutes..the eco-tale of how DDT affected the food chain on the island of Borneo, and how cats were later parachuted in to control the rat population which multiplied crazily as the result of DDT being introduced into the food chain. I used this with 4th graders... you might have to simplify it for lower grades. They were so intrigued by the story. There is a book by Charlotte Pomerantz on the story but it is a great way to show how food chains interconnect to form food webs and then you can also use a simple energy pyramid to show how energy moves through the ecosystem. A product for the end of the lesson could be to have the kids design ecosystems and highlight one or more food chains or food-webs which might exist there. You can also let the kids create fictional animals and plants with unique characteristics to be a part of their ecosystems. A lot of them would have fun with this option.

Mary Bigelow Mary Bigelow 10275 Points

This month's Science & Children has a great background article by Bill Robertson--
Science 101: If Energy Is Neither Created Nor Destroyed, What Happens to It? It goes beyond who eats whom to explain the transfer of energy in an ecosystem. Good background and perspective for the teacher.

Mary B

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