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Endangered Species Unit Plan

Instructor: Shanna Fox

Shanna has been an educator for 20 years and earned her Master of Education degree in 2017. She enjoys using her experience to provide engaging resources for other teachers.

Studying endangered species as a middle or high school class can be an exciting journey! In this unit, there are ways to study possible causes of species endangerment as well as conservation efforts that provide hope for the future.

Endangered Species

This middle or high school unit provides an overview of the concept of endangered species. For students this age, an endangered species unit needs to be more than just details about a few endangered animals. Rather, it's essential to answer the why question: why did these animals become endangered in the first place? Therefore, the unit requires students to take a comprehensive look at some causes of species endangerment. Students then explore what they can do about it. Conservation efforts are explored, and they even have a chance to plan some of their own. The unit wraps up with hands-on projects or research assignments.

The Basics

Kick off the unit with this Endangered Species Lesson Plan. This will lay the groundwork students will need as they continue their study of the concept of endangered species. For students who need additional support differentiating between endangered and extinct, add in this Extinction Lesson Plan to help clarify the concept.

Cause and Effect

Now it's time to explore some of the causes behind species endangerment and extinction. Explore an overview of this concept by guiding students through this Human Impact on the Environment Lesson Plan. Although it does not focus solely on endangered species, it provides an overarching view of how humans make a difference, for better or worse. It focuses on the environment as a whole, but also zooms in on endangered species.

One cause that may contribute to species endangerment and extinction is the introduction of non-native and invasive species into an ecosystem. Review these concepts in-depth by using this Invasive Species Lesson Plan. Differentiate by challenging advanced students with the activities in the lesson plan called Introduced Species Lesson Plan.

Another possible cause you can explore with your students is deforestation and the resulting habitat loss. Lay the groundwork with this Deforestation Lesson Plan. Delve deeper by using this Amazon Deforestation Lesson Plan. Utilizing this more specific lesson plan will allow you to explore specific endangered species found in the Amazon.

Lastly, global warming could be a contributing factor to species endangerment. Explore the concept using this Global Warming Lesson Plan. To differentiate for students who need additional support, utilize this ESL Global Warming Lesson Plan to guide their learning. Provide further opportunity for exploration by adding in some Global Warming Activities for Middle School. Activities can be used for high school students, as well, with some minor adjustments.

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