Ecosystems Unit Plan for 4th Grade

Instructor: Shanna Fox

Shanna has been part of the whirlwind world of teaching middle school for 20 years. She has a Master of Education degree in instructional design.

Ecosystems must be understood in a broader context, as well as explored on a deeper level. When this unit is complete, your fourth-grade students will be able to define, describe, and give detailed examples of ecosystems.


When teaching ecosystems, it's important to provide a concept overview and then drill down to the specifics. In this unit, fourth grade students are provided an overview and some context to start. They zoom into specific ecosystems as a class. Then, they dig deeper through team or partner research. Interacting with and presenting the material will help the valuable knowledge they gain to stick. The unit wraps up with a project-based assessment. Extensions are also provided to differentiate for advanced students.

Building Context

It's important for students to understand that ecosystems are part of a larger hierarchy, including biomes and habitats. Use this Ecosystem Lesson Plan for Elementary School to break the concept of ecosystems down and make it accessible to all learners. For advanced learners, consider using this Ecosystems Lesson Plan to help them understand ecosystems in a broader context. It's helpful to provide a graphic organizer so students can visualize and differentiate between these concepts.

After you check for understanding, you may determine that students need additional support or information about one of the connecting concepts.

To unlock this lesson you must be a Member.
Create your account

Register to view this lesson

Are you a student or a teacher?

Unlock Your Education

See for yourself why 30 million people use

Become a member and start learning now.
Become a Member  Back
What teachers are saying about
Try it risk-free for 30 days

Earning College Credit

Did you know… We have over 200 college courses that prepare you to earn credit by exam that is accepted by over 1,500 colleges and universities. You can test out of the first two years of college and save thousands off your degree. Anyone can earn credit-by-exam regardless of age or education level.

To learn more, visit our Earning Credit Page

Transferring credit to the school of your choice

Not sure what college you want to attend yet? has thousands of articles about every imaginable degree, area of study and career path that can help you find the school that's right for you.

Create an account to start this course today
Try it risk-free for 30 days!
Create an account