2ND GRADE     Standard 2.5   The student will investigate and understand that living things are part of a system. Key concepts include

a)      living organisms are interdependent with their living and nonliving surroundings; and

b)      habitats change over time due to many influences.


Living things are dependent on other living things and their nonliving surroundings for survival.

All of the interactions between and among living things and their nonliving surroundings are referred to as a system.

Shelter may be living (coral, tree) or nonliving (caves, houses).

      The habitats of living things, such as forests, grasslands, rivers, and streams, change due to many influences. Habitats change from season to season.


Classify: living or nonliving (water, space, shelter)(Shelter can also be living.)

Seasonal changes in habitat - response by trees, animals.

Dependence on surroundings i.e. squirrels affected by the loss of forest habitat.

3RD GRADE    Standard 3.5    The student will investigate and understand relationships among organisms in aquatic and terrestrial food chains. Key concepts include

a)      producer, consumer, decomposer;

b)      herbivore, carnivore, omnivore; and

c)      predator and prey.


A food chain shows a food relationship among plants and animals in a specific area or environment.

Terrestrial organisms are found on land habitats such as deserts, grasslands, and forests. Aquatic organisms are found in water habitats such as ponds, marshes, swamps, rivers, and oceans.

A green plant makes it own food from sunlight, air, and water. Green plants are producers.

A consumer is an animal that eats living organisms (plant or animal).

Certain organisms break down decayed plants and animals into smaller pieces that can be used again by living things. These organisms are decomposers.

A food chain, which shows part of a food web, can have an animal that eats only plants (herbivore). It can have an animal that eats only other animals (carnivore). It can also have an animal that eats both plants and animals (omnivore).

An animal can hunt other animals to get its food (predator).

      An animal can be hunted by another animal for food (prey).


Producers, consumers, herbivores, omnivores, carnivores, and decomposers.

Producers and consumers on a food chain

Change in one part of a food chain might affect the rest of the food chain.

Predators  vs. prey

Food chains begin with a green plant.


Standard 3.6     The student will investigate and understand that environments support a diversity of plants and animals that share limited resources. Key concepts include

a)      water-related environments (pond, marshland, swamp, stream, river, and ocean environments)

b)      dry-land environments (desert, grassland, rain forest, and forest environments); and

c)      population and community.


Water-related environments include those with fresh water or salt water. Examples include ponds, marshes, swamps, streams, rivers, and oceans.

Dry-land environments include deserts, grasslands, rain forests, and forests.

There are distinct differences among pond, marshland, swamp, stream, river, ocean, desert, grassland, rainforest, and forest environments.

A population is a group of organisms of the same kind that lives in the same place. Examples of a population are a group of swans in a pond, a school of fish in a river, and a herd of cattle in the grassland.

A community is all of the populations that live together in the same place. An example of a dry-land community would be a forest made up of trees, squirrels, worms, rabbits, and hawks. An example of a water-related community would be an ocean made up of fish, crabs, and seaweed.

      Organisms compete for the limited resources in their specific environment.


Name major water-related environments and the major dry-land environments; animals and plants living in them.

Population vs. Community.

Predict what would occur if a population in a specific environment were to die.