This programme is designed to to encourage students to investigate the inter-relationships that connect life together through a habitat mapping investigation of their school grounds. Session can be focused on a mini-beast or pond invertebrate investigation to explore and discover food chains in their own local environment.

Key concepts: habitats, grouping and classification, adaptations, food chains, food webbing and energy transfer

Learning outcomes:
By the end of the programme students will be able to:

  • Explain that a habitat is the home of a specific community of plants and animals.
  • Explain that plants and animals are adapted to their life style and the conditions of the habitat in which they live and provide examples.
  • Understand that plant and animals within a habitat interact in a number of different ways.
  • Understand the terms producer, consumer, herbivore, carnivore.
  • Explain that all food chains start with plants that make their own food using sunlight.

Programme outline

Programme outline for food chain fun
Learning objective Activities
To introduce food chains and feeding relationships
To assess prior knowledge and questions from the group
Munch line monitors
Children work in groups to organise food chains and to discuss terms – predator and prey.
To introduce the habitat concept and adaptations to survive Habitat Game
Individually, the children are asked to find four things animals need to survive. Other animals competing for food and predators are then added to the game to add a few survival challenges.
Explore and use classification keys to help group, identify and name invertebrates
Using careful observations to record and display findings
Habitat mapping
Using bug pots, trays and sweep nets, the children collect, identify and map where mini-beasts/pond invertebrates are found and map different habitats of the local area / pond zones.
Using observations and understanding about adaptations Adaptations relay race
Groups race to collect 3 adaptive features which match their favourite recorded invertebrate.
Plants and animals are linked through a series of food chains to form a web of interactions Food web game
Children create a food web taking on the roles of plants and animals found in the mapping investigation. Each is linked to a food chain and then into a complex web. Simulate effects of changes and affect on the web.
To assess understanding of learning points of the programme Conclusion
The children share interesting facts and discoveries. Discuss classroom follow up projects.


This programme supports the National Curriculum programme of study for:

National Curriculum programme of study for science
Science Year 1 and 2 Plants, Animals, including humans, Living things and their habitats
Year 3 and 4 Animals, including humans, Living things and their habitats
Year 5 and 6 Animals, including humans, Living things and their habitats, Evolution and Inheritance