Level 2 Units: Grades 3—5
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The focus of this lesson is the interconnectedness of life on Earth and each person’s responsibility for sustaining the plants and animals inhabiting the Earth. Students will learn about ecology: the role of ecosystems and habitats that are occupied and supported by different kinds of animals and plants. Students will study food chains and the places on food chains held by different kinds of organisms. They will learn how human activity can change an environment, endangering the organisms living there. They will also learn why it is important to keep wild places wild.Go to Unit 1
The focus of this lesson is urban wildlife, with special attention to some of the common animals who might scavenge in the students’ neighborhoods in search of food and use the surroundings as shelter. Students will learn about these animals’ needs for survival and develop empathy for wild animals who share the urban landscape. They will also study ways in which they can keep themselves, their pets, and wild creatures sharing their environment safe.Go to Unit 2
The primary focus of this lesson is domesticated companion animals, primarily those we call pets. Students will be asked to think about what defines a pet and why we keep pets. Students will be encouraged to reflect on what a pet needs in order to be happy and healthy. A secondary focus of the lesson is the role of working animals in different situations including companion service animals such as guide, medical alert, and other kinds of service dogs, as well as therapy cats, and their needs. Students will explore ways in which other cultures treat all animals, at the same time developing critical thinking skills to discern cross-cultural differences. They will recognize the humane treatment of animals and learn about efforts made toward promoting such treatment.Go to Unit 3