Lesson Plan - Get It!
What do you see in the picture above? Plants and animals, for sure. But what is going on behind the scenes?
If you studied the previous lessons in this Ecosystems series, found under Related Lessons in the right-hand sidebar, you have learned about all the different parts that make up an ecosystem.
Now you can review what you have learned about ecosystems. Take out a sheet of paper and a pencil.
On the sheet of paper, define the words "habitat," "niche," "population," and "community." When you are finished, share your work with your parent or teacher. After sharing your work, check your answers below.
A habitat is the physical area where a species lives. The temperature, amount of rainfall, soil, and amount of sunlight are all examples of abiotic (nonliving) factors that are parts of habitats. An example of a habitat for a bullfrog would be a pond.
A niche is an animal's role in its environment. Another great way to describe a niche is to call it an animal's job. All animals have jobs and play an important role in their ecosystem. An example of a niche is a bull frog controlling the insect population by feeding on insects.
A population is a group of the same species living in the same habitat. For example, a group of bullfrogs living in the same pond share the same habitat and are the same species. Together they form a population.
A community is multiple populations of different species sharing the same habitat. An example of a community is a bullfrog, fish, insects, and salamanders living in the same pond. All of these animals living in the same space make up a community.
All of these things work together to create an ecosystem. An ecosystem includes all the communities living in the same habitat. For example, the bullfrog community you learned about earlier is part of a larger ecosystem. Outside of the pond, you may find deer, toads, chipmunks, squirrels, and bears. All these animals might come to the pond to drink water. Even though they do not live directly in the pond, the animals in the pond and out of the pond are all sharing the same ecosystem. The forest is the ecosystem all of the various animals and plants share.
What is your ecosystem like? If you live in a city, the entire city is part of your ecosystem. If you live in a small town, the entire town is your ecosystem. Discuss your ecosystem with your parent or teacher. Compare your ecosystem to ecosystems like the desert or forest. What makes them the same and what makes them different? Discuss the similarities and differences with your parent or teacher.
Before moving on to the next section, tell your parent or teacher what makes up an ecosystem. Remember to include all of the details you learned from this unit of study!