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Hidden Habitats | Series 6, Lesson #3

Hidden Habitats

Key Topics: Habitat, Species, Endangered, Extinct

Grade Levels: K-2nd

Click here for Series #6 Description

Science Framework

Spanish Lesson Plan

Lesson Bridge

Connect this lesson (3) to Food Chain Frenzy (2) by reminding students how all species are connected to one another as we pass around energy from the sun. Today we will explore how species also rely on habitat and the role that a healthy habitat plays in maintaining the food web. Close the Loop by discussing how watersheds are habitat to many animals and plants!

Lesson Overview:  

We will learn about what makes a suitable habitat. What kinds of living beings are typically found in our schoolyard? Students will get to explore their garden and think about the animals that live there.

Suggested Activities & Learning Objectives by Grade:

Essential Question(s) that Connect CCCs and SEPs:


Habitat- A place where an animal lives that provides food, water, and shelter.

Species- A group of similar living things

Endangered - When a species is threatened to become extinct

Extinct- A species that no longer lives



Activity Procedure:


Who knows what a habitat is? Is our garden a habitat? For what sort of animals? What ways do these animals benefit the garden?


Have students take a few minutes to wander through the garden, find a spot to sit and observe what they see. When they return, ask them to think, pair, share what they saw.  Even within our garden there are microhabitats that supply the unique needs of different animals.  How does the habitat of a worm differ from the habitat of a bird?  Microhabitats support a diversity of plant and animal populations!  (Scale; Asking Questions and Defining Problems)


Every living thing needs a home, not just a shelter but somewhere that provides food and water too.  Unfortunately, many animals are losing their habitats as humans take ownership of the land. For example, usually when an area is farmed, it no longer offers habitats to native animals. When animals lose a lot of their habitat they can even go extinct, which means that all of that type of animal dies, because they do not have enough food or shelter. Can you think of an animal that has gone extinct or is going extinct? We call an animal who is going extinct, endangered. They are in danger of disappearing from the planet! Take this opportunity to talk about how the Monarch butterfly’s habitat is being altered or destroyed by climate change. You can also mention sea turtles!

Action: Identifying different habitats in the garden

  1. Review your Garden Agreements
  2. Discuss how they will be going on a garden safari, looking for and exploring the different microhabitats that our garden has to offer. (Different habitats can be as simple as a garden bed that gets more shade than other garden beds. Gardeners being mindful of this will plant things that like a cooler, shadier habitat!)
  3. Hand out the Habitat Survey Sheet and explain what students will be doing with the sheet (drawing habitats)
  4. Walk with students, and give a few examples of habitat. Example: The lavender plant offers at least two habitats. In the sun, we can often find bees looking for pollen in the lavender flowers. At the base of the plant, we can often find rollie-pollies and worms enjoying the shade and damp soil.
  5. Let students spend up to 15 minutes freely exploring. Walk around and help students to stay on task and continually give examples of habitats.


Ask students to think about other spaces on the school campus. Do they think the garden has more habitat for plants and animals than the playground? What about the lawns/fields?

What ways can we reduce habitat loss at our school?

Extension Activities:

Gardens Change Lives!                                                          Page  of