Unit of

Study
Food
Chains
Katryna
Poniatowski

Kutztown
University

Spring
2016

1

My unit of study is on food chains. The
intended grade level for this unit is
second grade. The relevance of this unit
is to teach students how living things can
only survive if their needs are being met.
We will focus on how plants and animals
get their food sources, interact with other
living organisms in their environment, and
how decomposes recycle their energy.
The topics included in this unit are
producers, consumers (including the
three types of consumers: carnivores,
omnivores, and herbivores),
decomposers, and the food chain. Its
limitations are that the food web, changes
in the ecosystem, animal adaptations,
and natural selection will not be covered.

2

3

Kutztown University
Elementary Education Department
Clinical Experience Program
Lesson Plan Format
Teacher Candidate: Katryna
Poniatowski
Cooperating Teacher: Adrienne Gray
Group Size: 22 Allotted Time: 30
minutes
Subject or Topic: Science: Food
Chains

Date: February 24, 2016
Coop. Initials: __________
Grade Level: Second Grade
Section: 025

Food Chain Unit / Day 1
Standard
3.1.2.C2 Explain that living things can only survive if their needs are
being met.
Performance Objective
The student will be able to identify examples of producers, consumers,
and
decomposers.
I.
Instructional Materials
a. Teacher Materials
i. “Producers, Consumers, and Decomposers” PowerPoint
ii. “Producers, Consumers, and Decomposers” Game
iii. Projector
iv. Smartboard
b. Student Materials
i. Writing utensil
II.
Subject Matter
a. Prerequisite Skills
i. Basic needs of animals
ii. General knowledge of what animals eat (i.e. rabbits eat
plants but they don’t eat other animals, etc.)
b. Key Vocabulary
i. Producer – living organisms that can produce, or make,
their own food.
ii. Consumer – living organisms that consume, or eat, plants
and/or other animals.

4

III.

iii. Decomposer – living organisms that decompose, or break
down, dead plants and animals and turn them into
nutrients
c. Big Idea
i. Living things can only survive if their needs are being met.
Food is one of the basic needs, and animals meet this need
in different ways.
d. Outline of Content
i. In this lesson, students will learn about producers,
consumers, and decomposers. Producers (plants) makes
their own food. Consumers (animals and people) eat
plants and/or other animals. Decomposers (fungi, worms,
bacteria) break down dead plants and animals.
Implementation
a. Introduction
i. Begin science at 9:00. Ask students to tip-toe over to the
mat.
ii. Start the lesson by reviewing basic needs: What do we all
need to survive?
iii. Connect this to what animals and plants need to survive:
we all have the same basic needs of food, water, air, and
shelter.
iv. Emphasize on the basic need of food: Why do we need
food to survive? Have students turn and talk to a partner to
discuss their ideas, then ask students share their answers
with the class.
b. Development
i. Define and discuss what a producer, consumer, and
decomposer are.
ii. During each slide, allow students to come up with ideas of
what animals fit that category.
c. Closure
i. Finish the lesson with an interactive review game. Call
students up one by one to select whether the animal
shown is a producer, consumer, or decomposer. Before
letting the student pick the answer, ask the student to talk
about what they know about the animal: what does this
animal usually eat?
ii. Ask students to go back to their seats and fill out a slip to
show you what they’ve learned. When they finish filling
out the exit slip, they may tip-toe back over to the mat and
sit quietly to get ready for ELA.
5

IV.

d. Accommodations/Differentiation
i. Accommodations
1. Pair students who struggle up with partners who will
help them.
ii. Differentiation
1. A PowerPoint presentation will be used for visual
learners.
2. An interactive game will be used for kinesthetic
learners.
e. Assessment/Evaluation
i. Formative
1. An exit slip will be used to determine if the student
could identify examples of producers, consumers,
and decomposers.
ii. Summative
iii. Evaluation
1. Students will be graded on a score of 0-5 on their exit
slips to assess their knowledge of producers,
consumers, and decomposers.
Reflective Response
a. Report of Students’ Performance in Terms of State
Objectives
Student
L.A.
E.A.

Score
5/5
5/5
0/5

O.B.

3/5
A.C.
P.C.

5/5
3/5

J.E.
J.F.
S.F.
J.H.

5/5
N/A
5/5
2/5

N.J.
I.J.

1/5
6

Comments
Was only correct in
stating that people are
consumers and bacteria
is a decomposer; all other
responses incorrect
Skipped a blank and did
not provide specific
examples.
Wrote that bacteria were
consumers and animals
are decomposers.
Absent
Wrote that plants are
consumers and people
are producers.
Did not complete and

answered other questions
incorrectly
A.J.

5/5
3/5

M.K.
3/5
Ja.L.
Jo.L.
D.M.

N/A
1/5
0/5

K.P.

M.R.

N/A
2/5

J.S.
0/5
D.T.

G.T.

5/5
2/5

J.V.

Did not give specific
examples of a producer
or consumer.
Did not give specific
examples of a producer
or consumer.
Absent
Answered one question,
did not complete the rest
Maybe she couldn’t read
the words? I had the
words listed in a word
bank, and Mrs. Gray said
it was fine, but maybe I
should have created an
accommodated
worksheet with pictures
to circle instead of words
to fill in.
Absent
Answered first two
problems but did not
complete.
Was only correct in
stating that people are
consumers and bacteria
are decomposers; all else
was incorrect.
Answered first two
problems but did not
complete.

b. Personal Reflection
i. I kept this lesson 15 minutes shorter than my previous
lessons, completing it in only a half hour. I think having an
interactive game helped make the lesson more hands on
and enjoyable.
ii. Students seemed to understand the lesson, but many of
them did not do well when I handed out the exit slips. I
wonder if students would have performed better if I asked
students to fill-in responses like “______________ are things
7

that can produce, or make their own food. Plants are an
example of this.” rather than “Producers are things that
can produce, or make, their own food. ___________ are
producers.”
V.

Resources
Parts of the Food Chain. (n.d.). Retrieved February 21, 2016, from
http://www.sheppardsoftware.com/content/animals/kidscorner/fo
odchain
/producersconsumers.htm
The Producer Consumer Decomposer Game. (n.d.). Retrieved February
21, 2016,
from
http://www.sheppardsoftware.com/content/animals/kidscorner/
games/producersconsumersgame.htm

8

Kutztown University
Elementary Education Department
Clinical Experience Program
Lesson Plan Format
Teacher Candidate: Katryna
Poniatowski
Cooperating Teacher: Adrienne Gray
Group Size: 21 Allotted Time: 30
minutes
Subject or Topic: Science: Food
Chains

Date: February 29, 2016
Coop. Initials: __________
Grade Level: Second Grade
Section: 025

Food Chain Unit / Day 2
Standard
3.1.2.C2 Explain that living things can only survive if their needs are
being met.
Performance Objective
The student will be able to identify examples of herbivores, omnivores,
and
carnivores.
I.
Instructional Materials
a. Teacher Materials
i. “Herbivores, Omnivores, and Carnivores” PowerPoint
ii. “Animal Diet” Game
iii. “Animal Diet 2” Game
iv. Projector
v. Smartboard
b. Student Materials
i. Writing utensil
II.
Subject Matter
a. Prerequisite Skills
i. Basic needs of animals
ii. General knowledge of what animals eat (i.e. rabbits eat
plants but they don’t eat other animals, etc.)
iii. Knowledge from previous lesson of producers, consumers,
and decomposers
b. Key Vocabulary
i. Herbivore – living organisms that eat only plants
ii. Carnivore – living organisms that eat other animals
iii. Omnivore – living organisms that eat both plants and
animals
9

III.

c. Big Idea
i. Living things can only survive if their needs are being met.
Food is one of the basic needs, and animals meet this need
in different ways.
d. Outline of Content
i. In this lesson, students will learn about the three types of
consumers: herbivores, carnivores, and omnivores.
Herbivores (i.e. rabbits) are organisms that eat only plants.
Carnivores (i.e. foxes) are organisms that eat other
animals. Omnivores (i.e. bears) are organisms that eat
both plants and other animals.
Implementation
a. Introduction
i. Begin science at 9:00. Ask students to tip-toe over to the
mat.
ii. Start the lesson by reviewing what students learned last
week about producers, consumers, and decomposers.
1. Review definitions. Ask students to identify
examples of each.
iii. Inform students that there are three different types of
consumers.
b. Development
i. Define and discuss what an herbivore, carnivore, and
omnivore are.
ii. During each slide, allow students to come up with ideas of
what animals fit that category.
c. Closure
i. Finish the lesson with an interactive review game. Call
students up one by one to select whether the animal
shown is an herbivore, carnivore, or omnivore. Before
letting the student pick the answer, ask the student to talk
about what they know about the animal: what does this
animal usually eat?
ii. Ask students to go back to their seats and fill out a slip to
show you what they’ve learned. When they finish filling
out the exit slip, they may tip-toe back over to the mat and
sit quietly to get ready for ELA.
d. Accommodations/Differentiation
i. Accommodations
1. Pair students who struggle up with partners who will
help them.
ii. Differentiation
10

IV.

1. A PowerPoint presentation will be used for visual
learners.
2. An interactive game will be used for kinesthetic
learners.
e. Assessment/Evaluation
i. Formative
1. An exit slip will be used to determine if the student
could identify examples of producers, consumers,
and decomposers.
ii. Summative
1. There is no summative assessment for this lesson.
iii. Evaluation
1. Students will be graded on a score of 0-5 on their exit
slips to assess their knowledge of producers,
consumers, and decomposers.
Reflective Response
a. Report of Students’ Performance in Terms of State
Objectives
Student
L.A.
E.A.
O.B.
A.C.
P.C.
J.E.
J.F.
S.F.
J.H.
N.J.
I.J.
A.J.
M.K.
Ja.L.
Jo.L.
D.M.

Score
5/6
6/6
1/6
3/6
6/6
2/6
6/6
6/6
6/6
3/6
3/6
1/6
N/A
6/6
3/6
3/6
0/6

K.P.
M.R.

4/6

11

Comments
All incorrect except #2
Did not complete 4-6
All incorrect but #2 and
#6

Mixed up omnivores and
carnivores
Mixed up carnivores and
omnivores

Did not complete 4-6
Filled in only “fill in the
blank” “herbivore”
“carnivore” “omnivore”
randomly
Wrote that a bear is an
herbivore and a squirrel is
an omnivore; probably

J.S.
D.T.
G.T.
J.V.

1/6
1/6
3/6

meant it the other way
around
Only one correct, rest are
incorrect or blank
Mixed up carnivores and
omnivores

6/6

b. Personal Reflection
Students generally seemed to do better in this section. The
names were longer and unfamiliar to students, so maybe I should
have had them repeat the name a couple of times. Maybe next
time, I should make sure I find ways to remember each term to
each definition (i.e. herb is a plant, and an herbivore eats plants)
Resources
Animal Diet Game. (n.d.). Retrieved February 21, 2016, from
http://www.
sheppardsoftware.com/content/animals/kidscorner/games/animal
diet
game.htm
Animal Diet Game 2. (n.d.). Retrieved February 21, 2016, from
http://www.
sheppardsoftware.com/content/animals/kidscorner/games/animal
diet
game2.htm
Carnivores. (n.d.). Retrieved February 21, 2016, from
http://www.sheppard
software.com/content/animals/kidscorner/animaldiet/carnivore.ht
m
Herbivores. (n.d.). Retrieved February 21, 2016, from
http://www.sheppard
software.com/content/animals/kidscorner/animaldiet/herbivore.ht
m

12

Omnivores. (n.d.). Retrieved February 21, 2016, from
http://www.sheppard
software.com/content/animals/kidscorner/animaldiet/omnivore.htm

13

Kutztown University
Elementary Education Department
Clinical Experience Program
Lesson Plan Format
Teacher Candidate: Katryna
Poniatowski
Cooperating Teacher: Adrienne Gray
Group Size: 23 Allotted Time: 30
minutes
Subject or Topic: Science: Food
Chains

Date: March 1, 2016
Coop. Initials: __________
Grade Level: Second Grade
Section: 025

Food Chain Unit / Day 3
Standard
3.1.2.C2 Explain that living things can only survive if their needs are
being met.
Performance Objective
The student will be able to explain what a food chain is.
I.
Instructional Materials
a. Teacher Materials
i. “Food Chain” PowerPoint
ii. “Food Chain” Game
iii. “Food Chains” Brain Pop Jr. video
iv. Projector
v. Smartboard
b. Student Materials
i. Writing utensil
II.
Subject Matter
a. Prerequisite Skills
i. Basic needs of animals
ii. General knowledge of what animals eat (i.e. rabbits eat
plants but they don’t eat other animals, etc.)
iii. Knowledge from previous lesson of producers, consumers
(including the difference between herbivores, carnivores,
and omnivores), and decomposers
b. Key Vocabulary
i. Food Chain – the order of how one living thing eats and
gets its energy from another living thing
ii. Predator – an animal that hunts other animals for food
iii. Prey - an animal that is eaten by predators
c. Big Idea
14

III.

i. Living things can only survive if their needs are being met.
Food is one of the basic needs, and animals meet this need
in different ways.
d. Outline of Content
i. In this lesson, students will learn about what a food chain
is. They will learn that all food chains begin with the sun.
The sun gives a producer energy to grow. The producer is
eaten by an herbivore. The herbivore is eaten by a
carnivore or omnivore. When that animal dies, a
decomposer breaks it down.
Implementation
a. Introduction
i. Begin science at 9:00. Ask students to tip-toe over to the
mat.
ii. Ask students to stand up, pick a partner, and discuss what
producers, consumers, and decomposers are.
iii. Have students sit down and review these terms.
iv. Ask students to stand up, pick a new partner, and discuss
what herbivores, carnivores, and omnivores are.
v. Review these terms.
b. Development
i. Start the lesson by watching a Brain Pop Jr. video on Food
Chains up until 4:09 (just before when Annie begins to
discuss what a food web is).
1. Review definitions. Ask students to identify
examples of each.
ii. Discuss what food chains consist of: the sun, a producer, a
consumer (herbivore), another consumer
(carnivore/omnivore), and a decomposer.
c. Closure
i. Finish the lesson with an interactive review game. Call
students up one by one to talk about where each animal
belongs in the food chain. Before letting the student pick
the answer, ask the student to talk about what they know
about the animal: what does this animal usually eat?
ii. Ask students to go back to their seats and fill out a slip to
show you what they’ve learned. When they finish filling
out the exit slip, they may tip-toe back over to the mat and
sit quietly to get ready for ELA.
d. Accommodations/Differentiation
i. Accommodations

15

IV.

1. Pair students who struggle up with partners who will
help them.
ii. Differentiation
1. A PowerPoint presentation will be used for visual
learners.
2. An interactive game will be used for kinesthetic
learners.
e. Assessment/Evaluation
i. Formative
1. An exit slip will be used to determine if the student
could explain what a food chain is.
ii. Summative
1. There is no summative assessment for this lesson.
iii. Evaluation
1. Students will be graded on a score of 0-5 on their exit
slips to assess their knowledge of food chains.
Reflective Response
a. Report of Students’ Performance in Terms of State
Objectives
b. Personal Reflection
Resources
“The Food Chain.” Sheppard Software. (n.d.) Retrieved February 28,
2016, from
http://sheppardsoftware.com/content/animals/kidscorner/foodchain/foo
d
chain.htm
“Food Chains”. Brain Pop Jr. (n.d.) Retrieved February 28, 2016, from
https://jr.brainpop.com/science/animals/foodchain/

16

Kutztown University
Elementary Education Department
Clinical Experience Program
Lesson Plan Format
Teacher Candidate: Katryna
Poniatowski
Cooperating Teacher: Adrienne Gray
Group Size: 23 Allotted Time: 30
minutes
Subject or Topic: Science: Food
Chains

Date: March 4, 2016
Coop. Initials: __________
Grade Level: Second Grade
Section: 025

Food Chain Unit / Day 4
Standard
3.1.2.C2 Explain that living things can only survive if their needs are
being met.
Performance Objective
The student will be able to create their own food chain.
I.
Instructional Materials
a. Teacher Materials
i. “What is a Food Chain?” Review Powerpoint
ii. “Food Chain” Game
iii. Projector
iv. Smartboard
b. Student Materials
i. Template paper
ii. Scissors
iii. Glue
iv. Crayons or markers
v. Writing utensil
II.
Subject Matter
a. Prerequisite Skills
i. Basic needs of animals
ii. General knowledge of what animals eat (i.e. rabbits eat
plants but they don’t eat other animals, etc.)
iii. Knowledge from previous lesson of producers, consumers
(including the difference between herbivores, carnivores,
and omnivores), and decomposers
b. Key Vocabulary
17

III.

i. Food Chain – the order of how one living thing eats and
gets its energy from another living thing
c. Big Idea
i. Living things can only survive if their needs are being met.
Food is one of the basic needs, and animals meet this need
in different ways.
d. Outline of Content
i. In this lesson, students will learn about what a food chain
is. They will learn that all food chains begin with the sun.
The sun gives a producer energy to grow. The producer is
eaten by an herbivore. The herbivore is eaten by a
carnivore or omnivore. When that animal dies, a
decomposer breaks it down.
Implementation
a. Introduction
i. Begin science at 9:00. Ask students to tip-toe over to the
mat.
ii. Discuss what a food chain is and what food chains consist
of: the sun, a producer, a consumer (herbivore), another
consumer (carnivore/omnivore), and a decomposer.
Review these terms.
iii. Complete a few more rounds of the interactive Food Chain
game. Call students up one by one to talk about where
each animal belongs in the food chain. Before letting the
student pick the answer, ask the student to talk about
what they know about the animal: what does this animal
usually eat?
b. Development
i. Students will begin creating their own food chain. Hand
out a fill-in-the-blank page so students can write their
thoughts down on paper. Provide students with a
template, and they will come up with their own producers
and consumers. Students will need four sheets of template
paper to cut out and draw for the sun, a producer, a
consumer (herbivore), and a second consumer
(omnivore/carnivore). They will need scissors and glue to
combine each link.
ii. If time allows, students may create a fifth or sixth link to
their chain for a third consumer and a decomposer.
c. Closure

18

IV.

i. Clean up at approximately 9:30. Allow students to share
their work and explain why they chose the plants and
animals they did.
d. Accommodations/Differentiation
i. Accommodations
1. Pair students who struggle up with partners who will
help them.
2. Students who complete the work in time may create
additional links to their food chain
3. Provide a website for students to research animal
diets (http://www.whateats.com/)
ii. Differentiation
1. A PowerPoint presentation will be used for visual
learners.
2. An interactive game will be used for kinesthetic
learners.
e. Assessment/Evaluation
i. Formative
1. Students will be assessed on the completion and
correctness of their food chains.
ii. Summative
1. There is no summative assessment for this lesson.
iii. Evaluation
1. Students will be graded on a score of 0-4 for their
food chains.
Reflective Response
a. Report of Students’ Performance in Terms of State
Objectives
b. Personal Reflection
Resources
“The Food Chain.” Sheppard Software. (n.d.) Retrieved February 28,
2016, from
http://sheppardsoftware.com/content/animals/kidscorner/foodchain/foo
d
chain.htm

“What Eats.” What Eats: A Food Web Website. Retrieved February 28,
2016, from
http://www.whateats.com/

19