ALEX Lesson Plan


Our Trip Around the Biomes

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  This lesson provided by:  
Author:Emily Heisler
System: Shelby County
School: Shelby County Board Of Education
  General Lesson Information  
Lesson Plan ID: 15419


Our Trip Around the Biomes


During this lesson, students travel to the biomes by way of the Internet. They learn the characteristics of biomes, including animals, plants, temperatures, etc. Students then use this information to create a slideshow presentation to help the zoo improve animal habitats.

 Associated Standards and Objectives 
Content Standard(s):
SC (5)
9. Describe the relationship of populations within a habitat to various communities and ecosystems.
  • Describing the relationship between food chains and food webs
  • Describing symbiotic relationships
  • TC2 (3-5)
    2. Use various technology applications, including word processing and multimedia software.
  • Using navigational features commonly found in technology applications
  • Identifying digital file types
  • TC2 (3-5)
    8. Collect information from a variety of digital sources.
    Examples: online libraries, multimedia dictionaries
  • Using technology tools to organize information
  • Demonstrating efficient Internet search strategies
  • Example: keyword search
  • Evaluating electronic resources for reliability based on publication date, bias, accuracy, and source credibility
  • ELA2015 (5)
    18. Integrate information from several texts on the same topic in order to write or speak about the subject knowledgeably. [RI.5.9]
    ELA2015 (5)
    27. With some guidance and support from adults, use technology, including the Internet, to produce and publish writing as well as to interact and collaborate with others; demonstrate sufficient command of keyboarding skills to type a minimum of two pages in a single sitting. [W.5.6]
    ELA2015 (5)
    28. Conduct short research projects that use several sources to build knowledge through investigation of different aspects of a topic. [W.5.7]
    ELA2015 (5)
    35. Report on a topic or text or present an opinion, sequencing ideas logically and using appropriate facts and relevant, descriptive details to support main ideas or themes; speak clearly at an understandable pace. [SL.5.4]
    ELA2015 (5)
    36. Include multimedia components (e.g., graphics, sound) and visual displays in presentations when appropriate to enhance the development of main ideas or themes. [SL.5.5]
    SC2015 (3)
    11. Construct an argument from evidence to explain the likelihood of an organism's ability to survive when compared to the resources in a certain habitat (e.g., freshwater organisms survive well, less well, or not at all in saltwater; desert organisms survive well, less well, or not at all in woodlands).
    a. Construct explanations that forming groups helps some organisms survive.
    b. Create models that illustrate how organisms and their habitats make up a system in which the parts depend on each other.
    c. Categorize resources in various habitats as basic materials (e.g., sunlight, air, freshwater, soil), produced materials (e.g., food, fuel, shelter), or as nonmaterial (e.g., safety, instinct, nature-learned behaviors).
    SC2015 (3)
    14. Collect information from a variety of sources to describe climates in different regions of the world.

    Local/National Standards:


    Primary Learning Objective(s):

    Students will name and describe the six land biomes of the world. Students will interpret information based on their research and incorporate into a presentation. Students will compare and contrast the different biomes. Students will discuss adaptations animals and plants make to survive in the ecosystem where they live.

    Additional Learning Objective(s):

     Preparation Information 

    Total Duration:

    Greater than 120 Minutes

    Materials and Resources:

    Handouts (see attached) for each student

    Technology Resources Needed:

    Computers with Internet access, MS PowerPoint software, printer


    Students will need to be able to locate information on the Internet and have basic word processing skills. The teacher should bookmark websites and copy the template file (see attached) to the computers the students will be using.

    1.)Introduce the lesson by telling students the following:
    The Birmingham Zoo needs your help! In the last few months, the zoo has become very understaffed and they need students to help them with their re-design of the zoo grounds. The zoo wants to create a display that represents every biome in the world. Students will divide into teams. The teams will take the shortest trip possible (via the Internet) around the world to visit all the biomes in our world and report information back to the zoo to complete the re-design.

    2.)Discovery of the Biomes:
    Without defining biomes, let students go to the computers and ask them to find out what a biome is and then to locate the main 6 land biomes in the world using the site below. Have students record their findings using the Biomes attachment.
    This site list all of the biomes with many details about each one.

    3.)This site has maps featuring the five major biomes and their most important sub-categories.
    (Map: World Biomes)
    Maps and information on biomes.

    4.)This resource, from the Living SchoolBook's CyberZoo, features a chart with information on dozens of zoo animals.
    (The CyberZoo Animal List)
    Chart about biomes.

    5.)Have students open the Biomes Vocab attachment. Let students create a vocabulary booklet containing all new vocabulary that they discover through this trip. Each word should be defined and illustrated.

    6.)Organize students into groups of six. Allow each person in the group to select a different biome. Using the biome organizer (see attached), students should conduct research using the Internet and find all of the necessary information as listed on the organizer. Give students the organizer and review the information they will be looking for, before allowing them to begin. Go over the following before allowing students to begin:
    a) When choosing animals, make sure to think about the food chain.
    b) When deciding on the plants, think about these questions:
    Why are you including these plants?
    Why are they important?
    Bookmark the website below to help students with the research. Also, refer students back to the website in Step 2.
    (Biomes of the World)
    This site provides many details about biomes of the world.

    7.)Once students complete their research, instruct them to begin putting together their presentations. Inform students that their teams must work together to create a slideshow presentation for the zoo. Allow students to use the template attached.

    8.)Once all presentations are completed, allow each team to present its slideshow to the class. The class could invite zoo employees to give feedback about their presentations.

    9.)The teacher may find additional helpful information at the following portal.
    (A Hotlist on Biomes)
    An Internet hotlist on biomes.

    **Some files will display in a new window. Others will prompt you to download.

    Assessment Strategies

    The attached rubric will be used to assess group projects.


    Students could create cover pages that include music representing the biomes of the world, and editing all slides before the final presentation.



    Each area below is a direct link to general teaching strategies/classroom accommodations for students with identified learning and/or behavior problems such as: reading or math performance below grade level; test or classroom assignments/quizzes at a failing level; failure to complete assignments independently; difficulty with short-term memory, abstract concepts, staying on task, or following directions; poor peer interaction or temper tantrums, and other learning or behavior problems.

    Presentation of Material Environment
    Time Demands Materials
    Attention Using Groups and Peers
    Assisting the Reluctant Starter Dealing with Inappropriate Behavior
    Be sure to check the student's IEP for specific accommodations.