Lesson plan

Biomes: Comparing and Contrasting

This lesson combines an introduction to biomes with some fun Venn diagram exercises. Not only will students learn more about nature, they'll also learn how to make comparisons between different things in nature.
GradeSubjectView aligned standards

Students will be able to make comparisons using a Venn Diagram.

(15 minutes)
Freshwater Biomes and Saltwater Biomes
  • Hand out a sticky note to each student.
  • Ask students to think about times when they've read informational texts. Have them share their experiences, and write some examples on the board.
  • Ask students to think about why informational text is important. Have them share their thoughts, and write some examples on their board.
  • Ask students to think about the skills we use when reading informational text. Direct students to write down one skill on their sticky note and pass it forward.
  • Using the sticky notes, create a small wall of skills on the board.
(15 minutes)
  • Explain to students they will be reading an informational text about two of the Earth's biomes. However, before that, they are going to watch a short video to help them visualize the different biomes that exist on Earth.
  • Show the Introduction to BiomesVideo.
  • Briefly discuss the video and what characterizes a biome.
  • Hand out the Freshwater vs. Saltwater worksheet to each student. Display your own copy using the document camera.
  • Hand out the highlighters.
  • Read the title and first paragraph of the worksheet aloud. Model the process of underlining the main idea and highlighting the supporting details.
(15 minutes)
  • Arrange the students into pairs.
  • Ask the students to partner up and read the rest of the text. As they read, they should underline the main idea of each paragraph and highlight supporting details.
  • Walk around the room and monitor the students. Provide help as needed.
  • Once all students have finished reading, draw their attention to the Venn diagram section of the attachment.
  • Model how to use the underlined and highlighted text to fill in the diagram. For example, look for similar supporting details in both texts to fill in the centre of the diagram.
(10 minutes)
  • Have the partners fill in all required information on the Venn Diagram.
  • Enrichment:Have advanced students research two different biomes during Independent Working Time and complete their Venn diagrams based on their research.
  • Support:Partner a student who needs support with a more advanced student.
(5 minutes)
  • Collect the Venn diagrams at the end of the lesson. Review them later to assess student comprehension.
(5 minutes)
  • After students are finished attempting to fill in the Venn diagram, display the answer key for the students to view.
  • Allow students to fill in missing information if needed.

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