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Food Chains

Food Chains

TEKS Objective

The student is expected to compare and give examples of the ways living organisms depend on each other and on their environments such as food chains within a garden, park, beach, lake, and wooded area.

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Essential Understanding

The student knows that living organisms have basic needs that must be met for them to survive within their environment.

Science Background

Food Chains and Cycles: BBC Bitesize (website) - Food chains illustrate the feeding relationship between living things. Learn more about the transfer of energy through food chains as you navigate this website.

Food Chains and Cycles
BBC Bitesize,

Food Chains and Food Webs: Virtual Teacher Aide (website) - Our bodies use energy every time we move or exercise or walk in the park. Where do we get the energy to do these things? Read this article about food chains and food webs helps to answer this question, and more.

Food Chains and Food Webs
Virtual Teacher Aide,

Signature Lesson

The Food Connection: SeaWorld/Busch Gardens (PDF) - Use food chains and food webs to help students compare and understand the relationships and dependencies among organisms in an ocean ecosystem.

The Food Connection
SeaWorld/Busch Gardens,

Supporting Lessons

Food Chain: Science NetLinks (website) - Explore the flow of matter and energy, and interdependence of life represented in food chains. Students learn to identify similarities and differences among a variety of food webs in different environments. Includes assessment and extensions.

Food Chain
Science NetLinks,

Elaboration Lessons and Extensions

Exploring the Native Plant World: Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center (PDF) - Use Activity 2.2 (“The ‘Wander’ Pollen”) on pages 9-11 to compare and learn how different living organisms depend on each other and their environments to survive.

Exploring the Native Plant World
University of Texas at Austin, Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center,

Assessment Ideas

Have students create/draw their own food chains to turn in for review. Post students’ work in a place that the entire class can view and benefit.

Literature Connections

The Magic School Bus Gets Eaten: A Book About Food Chains. Relf, P. and Bracken, C. (ISBN-13: 978-0590484145)

Meadow Food Chains. Kalman, Bobbie and MacAulay, Kelly (ISBN-13: 978-0778719915)

City Food Chains. Vogel, Julia (ISBN-13: 978-1602707917)

Who Eats What? Food Chains and Food Webs. Lauber, P. and Keller, H. (ISBN-13: 978-0064451307)

On One Flower: Butterflies, Ticks and a Few More Icks. Fredericks, A. (ISBN-13: 978-1584690870)

Related Science TEKS

(2.1A) Science Safety
The student is expected to identify and demonstrate safe practices as described in the Texas Safety Standards during classroom and outdoor investigations, including wearing safety goggles, washing hands, and using materials appropriately.

(2.1B) Importance of Safe Practices
The student is expected to describe the importance of safe practices.

(2.2A) Ask Questions
The student is expected to ask questions about organisms, objects, and events during observations and investigations.

(2.2B) Plan and Conduct Descriptive Investigation
The student is expected to plan and conduct descriptive investigations such as how organisms grow.

(2.2C) Collect Data
The student is expected to collect data from observations using simple equipment such as hand lenses, primary balances, thermometers, and non-standard measurement tools.

(2.2D) Record and Organize Data & Observations
The student is expected to record and organize data using pictures, numbers, and words.

(2.2E) Communicate and Justify Explanations
The student is expected to communicate observations and justify explanations using student-generated data from simple descriptive investigations.

(2.2F) Comparing Results of Investigations
The student is expected to compare results of investigations with what students and scientists know about the world.

(2.3A) Identify, Explain and Propose a Solution to a Problem
The student is expected to identify and explain a problem in his/her own words and propose a task and solution for the problem such as lack of water in a habitat.

(2.3B) Make Predictions
The student is expected to make predictions based on observable patterns.

(2.3C) Explore Scientists
The student is expected to identify what a scientist is and explore what different scientists do.

(2.4A) Tools for Collecting and Analyzing Information
The student is expected to collect, record, and compare information using tools, including computers, hand lenses, rulers, primary balances, plastic beakers, magnets, collecting nets, notebooks, and safety goggles; timing devices, including clocks and stopwatches; weather instruments such as thermometers, wind vanes, and rain gauges; and materials to support observations of habitats of organisms such as terrariums and aquariums.

Related Math TEKS

2.11A  The student is expected to construct picture graphs and bar-type graphs.

2.11B   The student is expected to draw conclusions and answer questions based on picture graphs and bar-type graphs.

2.12B   The student is expected to solve problems with guidance that incorporates the processes of understanding the problem, making a plan, carrying out the plan, and evaluating the solution for reasonableness.

2.12C   The student is expected to select or develop an appropriate problem-solving plan or strategy including drawing a picture, looking for a pattern, systematic guessing and checking, or acting it out in order to solve a problem.

2.12D  The student is expected to use tools such as real objects, manipulatives, and technology to solve problems.

2.13A  The student is expected to explain and record observations using objects, words, pictures, numbers, and technology.

Additional Resources

Our World, Honeybees: NASA eClips (video) - Join NASA scientists and beekeepers in a citizen science project to collect important data about climate change. See how honeybees pollinate more than 130 crops in the United States each year and learn how NASA is helping research of the decline in bee populations. (Scroll down the list of videos and click on the “Honeybees” icon.)

Our World, Honeybees
NASA eClips,

Food Chains: Brain Pop (website) - From the tiniest shrimp to the largest whale, all living things are part of a food chain. This cute animation explains food chains, food webs and energy pyramids, and illustrates why every creature plays an important role.

Food Chains
Brain Pop,

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