Activity Introduction

seal-hero4Quick summary: In this activity students explore the idea of food webs by investigating local marine food webs. They are asked to create a short film or animation that describes the food web they investigated and to present this film to the class for assessment.

Following this lesson plan is an ideal way for your school to take part in Zoos Victoria’s Seal the Loop program. You’ll be joining other amazing teachers in making a difference and creating positive environmental change.

 

Learning goals:

  • Students understand what is meant by food chain, food web, trophic level and trophic relationships.
  • Students understand that marine ecosystems are comprised of unique food webs and trophic relationships.

General capabilities: Critical and creative thinking,

Australian Curriculum content description:

Year 7 Science:

  • Interactions between organisms can be described in terms of food chains and food webs; human activity can affect these interactions (ACSSU112)
  • Summarise data, from students’ own investigations and secondary sources, and use scientific understanding to identify relationships and draw conclusions (ACSIS130)

Year 7 Media Arts:

  • Develop and refine media production skills to shape the technical and symbolic elements of images, sounds and text for a specific purpose and meaning (ACAMAM068)
  • Plan, structure and design media artworks that engage audiences (ACAMAM069)

Syllabus OutcomesSC4-7WS, SC4-15LW.

Topic: Seal the Loop

Time required: 2 x 60 mins

Level of teacher scaffolding: Medium – facilitate discussion and oversee activity.

Resources required: Student worksheet, Internet access, access to local zoo or marine centre (optional).

Digital technology opportunities: Short film or animation creation, digital sharing capabilites,.

Homework and extension opportunities: Includes opportunities for extension.

Keywords: Marine, ocean, food web, food chain, trophic level, conservation.

 

Cool Australia’s curriculum team continually reviews and refines our resources to be in line with changes to the Australian Curriculum.

Worksheets

Teacher Worksheet

seal-the-loop-hero-5Teacher preparation:

Overarching learning goals: Students will understand what is meant by food chain, food web, trophic level and trophic relationships, and they will recognise that marine ecosystems are comprised of unique food webs and trophic relationships.

Teacher content information: Food chains are a linear way to show the feeding relationships in an ecosystem. An animal grazes on the plant. Another, usually larger, animal eats the animal browser, and so on in a chain. The plant gets its energy using sunlight to make food. The browsing animal gets its energy from eating plants. The predators get their food from eating animals. We can use an arrow to show this relationship. It is important to note that the arrow always points to the animal that has just eaten something. This is because it shows the flow of energy. For example, the browsing animal eats the plant so the energy from the plant flows to the browsing animal, thus the arrow would point at the animal.

But nature isn’t

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Student Worksheet

Thought starter: Where do people fit in food webs?

Food chains are a linear way to show the feeding relationships in an ecosystem. An animal grazes on the plant. Another, usually larger, animal eats the animal browser, and so on in a chain. The plant gets its energy using sunlight to make food. The browsing animal gets its energy from eating plants. The predators get their food from eating animals. We can use an arrow to show this relationship. It is important to note that the arrow always points to the animal that has just eaten something. This is because it shows the flow of energy. For example, the browsing animal eats the plant so the energy from the plant flows to the browsing animal, thus the arrow would point at the animal.

But nature isn’t as simple as a food chain. Relationships in nature are complex and involve all sorts of interconnections and energy flows that are best shown as a food web. The picture below shows an Antarctic food web.

You can see from this food web

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