Food Chain Lesson for Kids: Definition & Examples

Food Chain Lesson for Kids: Definition & Examples
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  • 0:04 What Is a Food Chain?
  • 0:32 Parts of a Food Chain
  • 2:27 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Michelle Madden
In this lesson, you will learn about simple food chains and how energy is passed from producers to consumers to decomposers. You will also learn how you fit into the food chain!

What Is a Food Chain?

Imagine eating your favorite meal. Afterwards, you feel energized and ready to do almost anything! The food that you eat gives you energy to play, grow, and do all of the things that you need to do throughout the day.

Every living thing needs energy to live and grow. A food chain describes how organisms get energy from eating other organisms. Although a food chain usually shows a line of animals that eat each other, it is really a never-ending cycle that repeats over and over!

Parts of a Food Chain

Most food chains begin with the sun. This is because the sun provides energy to plants through a process called photosynthesis. During photosynthesis, a plant makes nutrients that become energy for itself, and also for animals that will someday eat the plant or parts of the plant. These organisms are called producers because they make food and energy for other living things. Some producers that are used for energy are grass, trees, vegetables, and fruits. They are the first link in the food chain.

The second link in the food chain is the consumer. Consumers are animals that eat producers and get energy from them. There are three types of consumers. Herbivores are consumers that eat only plants, fruits, and vegetables. Some examples of herbivores are rabbits, giraffes, and deer. The second type of consumer is called a carnivore, and carnivores eat only other animals. Some examples of carnivores are cats, sharks, and owls. The third type of consumer is called an omnivore, because it eats both plants and animals for energy. Some common omnivores are pigs, raccoons, and humans. You, and everyone you know, is a consumer!

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