Biology Lessons Part 2: Population Biology


 Lesson 2.3: Chaparral Community

Knowledge Mapping Exercise

Grade Level


Prospective and Practicing K-8 Teachers; may be adapted for use in elementary classes.


Exercises 1-4 take approximately 30 minutes.


Once you have completed these exercises you should be able to:
   1. Create a web of feeding relationships among organisms in a local natural environment.




Wherever there is a community of organisms, there is a food web.

 Exercise 1

Observing a Natural Environment

  With guidance from your teacher, observe and study a local natural environment, whether it be a canyon, woods, the seashore, or simply an empty lot. Record all organisms you see there, plant, animal and fungal. If possible, take a photograph of each organism. Field guides may be useful in identifying each one. All students in the class should pool their observations and identifications.

 Exercise 2

Library Research

  Gather whatever information you can on the local fauna and flora and their feeding habits.

 Exercise 3

Construct a Food Web


Construct a rough food web using a large board with each organism on a separate sticky. Draw relationships in pencil. Include other types of relations as well as feeding relations, such as "provides shelter for / receives shelter from" or "pollinates / pollinated by." Combine your observations and library research to do this.

When you are satisfied, construct a SemNet-based food web that represents your best estimates about the relationships among organisms in this local natural environment.