Camel cricket

The Classroom Biome

What if our classroom was a Biome…?

Lesson Summary

Lesson Summary: Comparing the characteristics of the “indoor biome” to other biomes around the world (and why some arthropods thrive indoors).

Essential Question(s): What kind of biome does our classroom most resemble? What does our classroom have that would be attractive to certain arthropods?

Established Goals/Objectives: At the conclusion of this lesson, students will be able to:

  • Explain the purpose of a bioblitz and why biodiversity matters
  • Students learn about the arthropods and their habitat
  • Record and share observations

21st Century Skills – Communication, Information Literacy, Critical Thinking

Teacher Background Information: https://fundamentals.school.eb.com/explore

Activity/Investigation:

  • This activity has students comparing the living conditions within the “classroom biome” to those where arthropods thrive. Can create a physical comparison of conditions favorable to insects inside the classroom vs other Biomes.
  • There is a great Minecraft Education world where the student players are investigating Biomes around the world — students can add “inside” Biome – student is shrunk down to insect-size inside a room — and they have to find food, water and shelter.
  • This activity could have students reflect on what is available to them at this size that they don’t normally pay attention to and how it might be very similar to what a small organism needs to survive.
  • If resources are things we care about and they’re being used/damaged by the insect (human food by cockroaches, wood by termites, ourselves by bed bugs), we consider them pests; if resources are things that we care about and they’re being helped by the insect (plants by pollinators) or if they’re things we don’t care about (gunk in our drains by drain flies, cockroaches by house centipedes), we consider them beneficial or at least neutral.

Assessment: Student presentation, Minecraft Build, Diorama comparison – STEM/Science notebook reflections.

Resources:

Next Generation Science Standards

  • K-LS-1: Use observations to describe patterns of what plants and animals need to survive.
  • 2-LS4-1: Make observations of plants and animals to compare the diversity of life in different habitats.

NC Standards

1.L.2.2 Summarize the basic needs of a variety of different animals (including air, water, and food) for energy and growth.
5.L.2.2 Classify the organisms within an ecosystem according to the function they serve: producers, consumers, or decomposers (biotic factors).
5.L.2.3 Infer the effects that may result from the interconnected relationship of plants and animals to their ecosystem.

This lesson was prepared by Gregory Eyman, K-5 STEM, Brentwood Magnet Elementary School of Engineering.

Never Home Alone: Lessons and Activities