Beacon Lesson Plan Library

Endangered Species

Teresa Lowery


Students will be able to identify endangered species, identify physical & behavioral characteristics, work in a group for research and presentation, and create a PowerPoint presentation with their findings.


The student knows possible causes for a species to become threatened, endangered, or extinct.


-Worksheet for students to enter their information (see associated file)
-Resources regarding endangered species. This includes books, the Internet, as well as some illustrations of animals that have been designated as endangered.
-PC or Macintosh Computers with Internet access and Microsoft Office (PowerPoint) - this lesson can be done in groups of no more than 3
-(Optional) Color Scanner to scan pictures of endangered species from magazines.


1. Pull together resources from the library and the Internet.
2. Duplicate the Worksheet found in the associated file.
3. Have an animal chosen with the needed information to use at the beginning of the procedures for an example.


1. Introduce the lesson by selecting an endangered species. Describe how the information was found.

2. Identify its physical and behavorial characteristics. Discuss with the class, why the species is endangered.

3. Discuss with the class, what adaptations are necessary in order for it to survive.

4. Break up the class into groups of 2 or 3 so that they can choose an endangered species. Distribute the worksheet found in the associated file. Students will need to choose a recorder, materials gatherer, record keeper, etc. Write the title and the person's name on the worksheet. The teacher will keep an informal record to make sure all students are doing their jobs. The groups should identify:
- Name of the animal
- Scientific Name of the animal
- Identify its characteristics
- Habitat of the species
- Reproduction
- Diet
- Why it is endangered
- Adaptation suggestions
- Closing - Students' names in the group

Circulate and assist the groups, giving feedback where necessary. Offer suggestions to the students on where to look for information on their species.

5. Allow students to use the resources - library and Internet.

6. The students should have prior knowledge of how to use Microsoft PowerPoint. With this prior knowledge, the students can create a PowerPoint presentation about the endangered species which will include a slide for the following:

- Introduction (Name & Scientific Name)
Picture of the Animal
- Characteristics
- Habitat of the species
- Reproduction
- Diet
- Why it is endangered
- Adaptation suggestions

7. Optional -- Students are able to download or scan any necessary pictures for their presentation. (A great image site is - click the images button)

8. Students will present their findings to the class as an oral presentation. Students must include the possible causes of why the animal is endangered.


Assess the student presentations with the emphasis being the student's knowledge for the possible causes of an animal to become endangered. Since students work together to create the presentation, this is a formative assessment and should not be used as a grade. Student groups who do not discuss this in their presentations may need to be questioned so as to make sure they understand the reason why the animal is endangered at this time.


Many modifications could be made for varying learners. You could pair good reading students with those having difficulty. You could also allow students who are familiar with PowerPoint to pair with those who aren't.

Web Links

Web supplement for Endangered Species

Web supplement for Endangered Species
Endangered Animal

Web supplement for Endangered Species
Stop Extinction

Attached Files

A worksheet for students to use.     File Extension: pdf

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