Food Chains. (Lesson)

Article excerpt

Grade Level(s): 4-6

Subject Area: Science

Software: PiCoMap www.handheld.hice-dev.org

Technology Needed: Palm handheld computer

Lesson Description: Students learn about food chains and how they work. They discuss how each component depends on the next. They draw examples of food chains using PiCoMap.

Objectives: Students demonstrate an understanding of food chains. Students draw examples of food chains using concept maps.

Vocabulary: energy, producers, consumers, carnivores, herbivores, decomposers

Lesson Starter

1. Picture this scene: A small grey mouse is peacefully eating grass in an open field. A hawk flying high above suddenly swoops down to the ground, captures the mouse and eats it.

2. This is a food chain. From this example, what do you think is the purpose of a food chain? (Answer: All living things get energy from their food.)

3. The parts of a chain are producers and consumers, and it always starts with plants and ends with animals.

Create a Food Chain

1. Turn on your Palm handheld computer and start PiCoMap. Start a new PiCoMap and name it Food Chain 1. Type your name and click OK.

2. Draw two chains--one that shows how a food chain works and the other that gives definitions:

a) In the first, show bubbles for plant, plant eater, and meat eater.

b) In the second, show the words producer, herbivore, and carnivore.

3. Add the lines that show how energy passes from the food to the eater. Draw the lines in the correct direction to display the direction and label them "energy."

4. Use PiCoMap to draw the food chain we talked about earlier, the one with the mouse eating grass and the hawk that eats the mouse. …