We are currently Exploring Ecosystems.
Trip to the Museum
We started with a trip to the Royal BC Museum a couple of weeks ago when the admission was by donation. I have a post in process about that visit, but I will summarize here. We took all five kids, ages 5-13. Each child has different sensory needs and learns at a different level and by different means (not that this is news to you), so it made the museum visit very challenging and fast paced. We spent almost 2 hours, had a great time, and got out just before closing. It was a great experience all around.
Videos to Watch
We watched a video series called Biologically Speaking: Ecosystems and the Cycles of Nature from Discovery Education (You do need a subscription for this.)
We watched some good videos on YouTube about ecosystems, including the following:
What is an Ecosystem?
Keywords to search on YouTube: ecosystem, biomes, abiotic and biotic, habitats
Vocabulary and Spelling
I made a list of vocabulary words that I wanted to cover (based on the teacher’s guide that came with the videos from Discovery Education). Then I created a PDF download, of those vocabulary words, in architect’s font (all caps), for my kid/s with dysgraphia (don’t worry, I made a list in lower case for you too).
Download the list of ecosystem vocabulary words here –> View on Store
(the graphic below is NOT the download linked to above)
Then I took those words and hoped on over to Spelling City (we have a subscription). I created a spelling list using the vocabulary words and definitions that I wanted us to use. You should be able to see my Ecosystems Vocabulary List without a subscription. Then I selected the worksheets that I wanted to use. I saved them as a PDF, to a file called ecosystems, for the twins who will do this unit in a few years. I also printed out copies for myself and the big boys who are working through this time.
Please note: There are also online games at Spelling City that your child could use in place of each of the worksheets that I printed.
Biome and Habitat Resources
Use the Canadian Geographic Kids website to learn more Animal Facts about Canadian animals and their habitats.
Explore the Creature Feature and click on the animals at National Geographic to learn more about them and their habitats.
The Animal Fact Guide has a large collection of resources about a variety of different animals and their habitats.
There is an excellent selection of Biome/Habitat resources on Enchanted Learning (we have a subscription) that we will be using as we continue our studies this week.
I also purchased a good resource called Elementary Biome & Habitat Packet from Teachers Pay Teachers. It was on the pricey side, but full of resources and ideas that I can make use of.
Online Games to Play
Use the activities on Humans and Animal Habitats to learn more about habitats around the world and the animals that live in them.
Shepherd’s Software Animal Games has some excellent games for learning about ecosystems, biomes, habitats and much more.
Forest Layers is an interesting and interactive exploration of the forest and its layers.
The Great Habitat Match Up is a simple online Magic School Bus activity.
Who Lives Here? This is a matching game where you match which animals live in each tree. This game includes information about the animals and you work through several different trees.
You are challenged with Designing a Habitat for a Black Footed Ferret in this game. What will make the perfect habitat for this animal?
Find a new home for Froggy and learn all about his habitat in the process.
Virtual Field Trips
1) Take a virtual field trip and visit 3 different ecosystems (desert, rain forest, arctic) with the following video on YouTube.
2) Visit the African Safari and learn all about the ecosystem there with the following YouTube video.
3) Welcome to the Deep Sea. Enter the deep sea through a critter cam.
Please Note: You can search on YouTube, Google, or Pinterest to find other excellent virtual field trips that you can take.
Build an Ecosystem
PS – I will be adding more resources to this post as I find them.