We hear you’re stuck at home! A science word for home is ecosystem. Look around your home...find something that’s living, find something that’s non-living. Like your home, the ecosystems that make up the pontchartrain basin also have living and non-living things. Today, we’re going to help you create a visual model of one of the ecosystems in our basin. If you haven’t seen our short how-to video go check it out now. Still wondering what an ecosystem is? Check out the “Understanding Ecosystems for Kids” video.
For a preview of what you will be making, look at our example. It has living and non-living things. How did we know what to draw and include in our visual model? We researched it!
Let’s get started! First, gather your supplies. Refer to our materials list.
Now, take a look at our seven featured ecosystems at the bottom of the page. Choose which one you want to create first. Take a large piece of blank paper and write the name of your ecosystem in the top left corner. White paper works well here, but you can use any paper you have available.
Next, follow the directions on your lab sheet (you can print it out or fill it out on your computer) to learn more about your ecosystem. Be sure to go in order and be detailed! We have included several resources for you to use to answer the questions on your lab sheet. You can use the ecosystem fact sheet, the linked websites, or your own internet searches.
Once you’ve filled out your worksheet, start creating your ecosystem! Have fun with your design, but be sure to include the water (hydrology), plants, and animals that you would find! It can be as simple or as fancy as you want -- your imagination is the limit! You can use our visual guides for inspiration for your drawings. You can cut rivers out of blue paper or use blue yarn. Your animals can be 3-D. Your plants can be made of tissue paper. How accurate can you get with your ecosystem. Be sure to label your plants and animals so everyone knows what lives there!
Over the next few weeks, we challenge you to make visual models of all seven ecosystems! Share them with us, we’d love to see what you make!