Organisms as Part of Interconnected Food Webs

Teacher Note: Depending on the length of class time available, this lesson may take 2-3 sessions to complete.

Learning Outcomes

Students will:

  • analyse the roles of organisms as part of interconnected food webs, populations, communities, and ecosystems.



  • The students will gain an awareness of environmental stewardship from a West Coast Aboriginal perspective.
  • The students will understand the concepts of ecological pyramids and interconnected food chains.


Students will select one animal from a local ecosystem and create a presentation that represents their understanding of food chains and food webs.


  1. Discuss key vocabulary.
  2. Discuss the difference between a food chain and food web and complete a food chain exercise of a local ecosystem.
  3. Play a game that highlights the process of how a food chain works.
  4. Complete a graphic organizer while viewing the video.
  5. Students complete a demonstration assignment of their understanding of food chains and food webs.

Activate Prior Knowledge:

Discuss the following vocabulary and brainstorm ideas of the respective definitions on the board.

Key vocabulary to discuss: Stewardship, indigenous, perspective, assets, potlatch, elders, traditional territory, hereditary chief, floodplain, fry, riparian, watershed, producer, consumer, primary, secondary, tertiary, quaternary. (Definitions)

Predict: Discuss the difference between food chains and food webs and predict what would happen to a local ecosystem food chain if one element was removed.(A/B partner talk suggested)

Question: Teachers distribute a food chain diagram and students, in A/B partners, complete a food chain of local ecosystem. Reference Enchanted Learning for explanations of food chains.

Distribute the Krill Grill Record Sheet and play the game Dining at the Krill Grill. Students record results of the game on their record sheets. Discuss the questions at the end of the activity to reinforce understanding of food chains.


Video: Students watch the following video and use a What’s Important and Why sheet to highlight five keys points that focus on land stewardship.

Reminder: It is important to stop throughout the video and give students (A/B partners) opportunity to talk or respond to the video.


Screen Shot 2015-04-28 at 3.11.07 PM

(Video Length: 6 mins)


Students will select one animal from a local ecosystem and create a presentation that represents their understanding of food chains and food webs. For example, a poster could be created with a food chain on one side and a food web on the other. Other possibilities include a Powerpoint presentation, drama presentation, modifying the Krill Grill game to one’s local ecosystem.


Students discuss what stewardship initiatives are in place in their local region/province/country and write, on the back of their video sheet, three ideas of how they can assist these initiatives.

Extend learning or next lesson

  • The National Geographic web site describes a ‘real world’ example of food chain disruption that may be occurring with Antarctic krill. Study more about the Krill at National Geographic and write a research report on the factors affecting global krill populations.
  • Create playing cards of animals in a local ecosystem (ie. bear, cougar, mouse, birds) and have students play a version of the ‘war’ card game to reinforce the levels of a food chain.