This year, we learned about the earth’s biomes for our science curriculum. Through this one subject, we learned animal classification, plant classification, life cycles, the water cycle, geography, conservation as well as other topics that came up during our study. All while taking the relaxed approach of studying one biome a month. Here are the books and the resources we used so that you can replicate this in your homeschool or classroom.
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First, the biomes we studied were: Desert, Ocean, Rain Forests, Other Forests, Tundra, Grasslands and Fresh Water. I tried to line these up with other subjects we were studying or what was going on in our every day lives. For example, we studied oceans the month we went to the beach and the tundra during the month of January when we were also studying Jan Brett as our 1st grade literature unit.
We started each month by reading some books about the biome of the month. These were our favorite non-fiction series that had a book for each biome:
If you like the books in the Who Was? or Magic Tree House series, then check out these related books:
This book looks amazing, too, if your children are about ages 9 and up!
Biome Notebooking Pages
I created notebooking pages to go with each of the biomes. As we read the books, we would fill in the notebooking pages. We typically spent one week introducing the biome, one week on plants of the biome, one week on animals of the biome and then finished with filling in a food web. You can purchase the notebooking pages here.
We used a coloring page map on the cover of our notebooks to locate each of the biomes.
Here is a map of the biomes you can download.
Daily Biome Vocabulary Cards
Each day, we reviewed our vocabulary cards for the biome of the month. They contained examples of the biome, and plants and animals that live there. The boys loved these and were curious to see each day what we would learn. They were also great for pre-teaching vocabulary or for reviewing what we had learned while reading.
I created these with early to mid-elementary school students in mind and they can be found here: Biome Calendar Card Bundle.
Biome Sorting Mats
After we finished studying all of the biomes, I decided to make sorting mats for the boys to review all that they learned and see what they recalled. These would be great to use throughout each unit to practice active recall of the information learned as well as to review previous biomes. You can check out the biome sorting mats here.
Other Biome Activities
Making a diorama of some of the biomes is a fun activity. We used sand and paper cutouts to make desert biomes in a shoebox one month. Check out these step by step directions for more ideas.
There are also many videos on YouTube that allow you to see and hear what it would be like to visit each biome and those added a lot to our studies.
If you try any of the books or activities, let us know how they worked out! Or if you have some other ideas for learning about biomes, comment below.