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TeachNet NYC: Lesson Plans

What on Earth is a Biome?

Lesson 1     Lesson 2     Lesson 3     Lesson 4 


AIM: What are the abiotic (physical) characteristics of the earth's major biomes?

MOTIVATION:  Review the vocabulary words from the previous lesson, especially what abiotic
    means.  Have children brainstorm about what each of these factors are from looking at pictures
    and accessing the website:
   http://richmond.edu/~ed344/webunits/biomes 

PROCEDURE:
    1.  Have students fill in the database, listing the abiotic factors for each biome.

SAMPLE DATABASE:
 

BIOME NAME ILLUSTRATION ABIOTIC FACTORS
TUNDRA Frozen ground, long, cold, dark winters, short cool summers, little rainfall.
TAIGA Long. cold winters, short, cool summers, moderate rainfall
TEMPERATE FOREST Cold winters, warm summers, moderate rainfall
GRASSLAND Very cold winters, very hot and dry summers, moderate to light rainfall.
RAIN FOREST Hot, humid, rainy.  Constant temperatures.
DESERT Hot, dry days, cold nights, little to no rainfall.
OCEAN Varying temperatures depending on currents and latitude.

ACTIVITIES:
    1.  Students fill in the database, using the above web site, or Encarta OnLine Encyclopedia at
http://encarta.msn.com
    2.  Students may search for information using http://yahooligans.com or another search engine/directory geared toward younger readers.

FOLLOW-UP:
    1.  This lesson will lead into lesson 4:   "Where are the earth's biomes located?"
    2.  Students can use the data on average yearly temperature for each biome and create a graph comparing the temperatures of the various biomes.

 

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