Beacon Lesson Plan Library

Web Your Way Through the Food Chain

Karen Smith
Broward County Schools


After completing this lesson, students have a better understanding of the role of producers and consumers in a food web, and how they receive energy from the food they eat.


The student understands that energy is transferred to living organisms through the food they eat.

The student knows examples of living things that are classified as producers, consumers, carnivores, herbivores, and omnivores.


-Pictures or clipart of animals and plants
- Poster Board
- Index Cards
- String
- Internet, Encyclopedia, or animal books (used to find out facts about what different animals eat and habitat
- Glue
- Scissors
- Crayons
- Magazines with animal and plant pictures


1. Cut out and glue 40 pictures on to the index cards. Have about 30 pictures of animals and 10 of plants. You may want to label the animals and plants ahead of time with the name, habitat, and food or make it a class activity.
2. Punch holes in the cards and tie a string long enough to go over the head of the child.
3. Check out books or provide library time to research an animal or plant.
4. Collect magazines for posters.
5. Print song from Sea World Website and duplicate.


1. Give each child a paper plate and have him/her draw the favorite meal.

2. Discuss the types of foods that they drew on their paper plates. Are these foods meats, vegetables or some of each?

3. Introduce the terms carnivore, herbivore and omnivore and place them on a chart on the board. Ask them to place themselves under one of the categories.

4. Explain to students that they get their energy from the foods that they eat and the foods they have on their plates give them energy.

5. Discuss how animals get their energy. They should make the connection that they also get their energy from their food.

6. Give examples of some animals and have the students tell you what they eat. Refer back to carnivore, herbivore, and omnivore as you discuss what the animal eats. Begin classifying them under the categories.

7. At this point the students should understand that carnivores eat meat, herbivores eat plants, omnivores eat meat and plants.

8. Explain the energy cycle of life and that we must begin with producers.

This will end your first 60 minutes session.

9. Give each student an animal or plant card that you have prepared. Play a quick game of producers and consumers. Have producers raise their cards when you call for them and then do the same with carnivores and omnivores.

10. Now that the students understand about the vocabulary terms, have them all stand up and form a large circle around the room.

11. Tell them they are all very hungry. They need food or they will die. Have them walk around the room to find their food (energy). Time them so they only have one minute.

12. Now remove one of the producers from the game and give the child another card. Have the students repeat step 11 to see if they will still have energy after that card is removed.

13. Begin your final project by having children choose a group to work with. Give them the materials to work on their food web posters. You will need to model how to do this on the board. (You may also give them specific habitats to develop for their food chain. For example, Everglades, Arctic, ocean habitats.)

14. Tell each student to choose one picture of a producer to paste in the middle of the poster board.

15. Next, choose an animal that can consume that producer. Attach a string from the producer to the consumer.

16. Now choose an animal that can consume the last picture you put on. Glue the picture on to the board. Place one end of the string from the producer to the consumer. Continue till you have your board filled or until there are no more matches.

17. Intruct your students that there may be more then one picture on the board that they can consume. Have them attach a string to these matches as well.

18. At the end, the students should have the poster board filled with pictures of producers and consumers.

19. Share posters with the class.

17. Culminate by singing the Food Chain Song.


Students will be formatively assessed throughout the lesson as they identify producers and consumers. The students will understand energy is provided to the animal from the food they eat. The students will work in groups to create a picture web using string to web the producers to the consumers. Next to each picture, students will label the picture with the animal name, habitat and whether they are a herbivore, carnivore, or omnivore. They will also be assessed on the cooperative skills of the group.

To formatively assess students, have him them in their journals:
1. What are three facts about energy, consumers, and living things you learned from this lesson?
2. People are omnivores. What does that mean?

Students who cannot indicate that food produces energy and that living things fall into different categories need corrective feedback.


Students can research the animals of the Florida Everglades to find out why they are endangered or extinct. Students may also write their own food chain songs to the tune of the song, Itsy Bitsy Spider.

Web Links

Web supplement for Web Your Way Through the Food Chain
Animal Facts

Web supplement for Web Your Way Through the Food Chain
National Zoo

Web supplement for Web Your Way Through the Food Chain
Wildlife Search

Web supplement for Web Your Way Through the Food Chain
Graphic Food Chain

Web supplement for Web Your Way Through the Food Chain
Food Chain Song

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