For Teachers

Letter to Educators



Why Study Rare Breeds?

ALBC Conservation Priorty List


~ K-2 Overview


~ 3-5 Overview



Farm Visits

Third Grade Unit: ENGAGE



• The characteristics of organisms: what they eat. • Regulation and behavior: animals are living things that can move around, get food for fuel, and reproduce; plants are living things that make their own food, reproduce, but cannot move around. • Food chains • Interdependence: humans, plants and animals are interdependent. • Communities


• Writing (specific focus determined by grade level)
• Listening
• Note taking
• Observation
• Compare and contrast
• Critical Thinking


Students view slideshow Part One focusing on the usefulness of farm animals and specifically of rare domestic breeds. They learn the value and importance of farm animals; how farm animals provide useful services and products. Animals provide people with food, fiber, and services, including companionship. After a brief discussion about how domestic animals have historically been used for products and services, and how they are used today, students create the Farm Food Web focused food and energy needs. They explore the many interdependent components of the food web on a farm. (Services provided by animals, such as pulling a plow, will be returned to in a later lesson. ) In this whole group activity, students use a ball of yarn, to create a web of "who eats whom". Finally, in small groups, student teams create a "Desk Web" using animal images and species cards with foods listed.



Slideshow Part One; LCD projector, screen, FoodWebSide1.pdf, FoodWebSide2.pdf, FoodCards.pdf (one copy per team), copier, laminator. single hole punch, yarn. Prepare food web and food cards in advance.




1. Show part one of the slideshow and then discuss why farm animals are important. 2. Be sure to practice in advance at least once so that you are familiar with the content and can give a smooth delivery. 3. After the slideshow, review what they learned. As they are able, students can practice taking notes.



1. Print FoodWebSide1.pdf and on the opposite side print FoodWebSide2.pdf. Print a second copy as a reference key. Laminate. Cut one copy into cards and punch two holes, to create labels that hang around necks. (If your laminator requires an edge, then cards will have to be cut out before laminating).

2. Cut into cards and punch two holes, to create labels that hang around necks.

3. Get students into a large circle in the room with room to toss a ball of yarn among everyone. Standing beside each other in a circle, not staggered, everyone should be able to see everyone else's eyes. The teacher can wear a card too and participate.

4. Hang labels around necks of students and have them silently read the backs of their cards. Tell them to study what they need and who or what needs them. Put down their cards and begin the game.

5. Choose someone to start. They will say their name, and what they need, as they look at the person with the card that has their need on it. They can say, "I am a cow, and I need grass. " When the grass holds up it's hands for the ball then they can person toss the yarn ball to that person. Have them pull off enough yarn so that the ball flies smoothly in the air. Do not throw the ball to someone who has already had it unless you have no choice. This continues as one by one all are included and you create your farm food web.

6. Once the web is made, have one person gently tug on their strand. If someone felt the tug, they should tug the next person. Feel the tugs travel though the web. Point out that in a food web, all members are interconnected.

7. While you wrap up the yarn (having students continue to hold it so it doesn't get tangled) ask questions about their experiences on farms. As possible, ask: What is a plant? What is an animal? Talk about the upcoming field trip. Is the farm a community of organisms?

8. Hand in your nametag and return to your tables for some team work.


1. Students return to desks or tables to do a team web.

2. Hand out one copy per team of the FoodCards.pdf printed on card stock or laminated and cut into cards.

3. Students work in small groups to create food chains or a web.

4. Students recall the web and match images with the cards describing the food animals eat, creating a team web at their desks or on a poster.


1. For homework, or during writing time (e. g readers and writers workshop), students will write according to their ability (words, a few sentences or a paragraph) explaining: "Why farm animals are important. "

2. Differentiate according to ability:

Level 1: Name three products or services farm animals provide. Level 2: Write three sentences about why farm animals are important. Level 3: Write a paragraph with introductory and concluding sentences and three supporting reasons that farm animals are important.

Navigating the Unit

3rd - 5 E Summary
3rd - Engage
3rd - Explore
3rd - Explain
3rd - Expand
3rd - Evaluate
3rd - Supplement

Noah's Ark Today is property of the American Livestock Breeds Conservancy.
Copyright 2006.

American Livestock Breeds Conservancy, PO Box 477, Pittsboro, NC 27312