Grade 1: Unit 2- Our Environment: Lesson 3 REMIX

Grade 1: Our Environment- Lesson 3

Lesson Focus

What is an environment? How is your habitat related to your environment?

Lesson Overview

Students will participate in either a cooperative learning activity (jigsaw strategy) or a teacher directed activity to help students gather information about the different habitats on earth. Students will share and discuss the information gathered in order to identify some commonalities among all habitats and relate this understanding to environments. Then the teacher will guide the students in developing generalizations about habitats and their connections to environments overall. (A habitat is an animal’s home. A habitat includes all of the things the animal needs to survive. A habitat it found in the surrounding environment. They are connected.)

Teacher Planning and Preparation

Teachers may find it helpful to either bookmark the websites or create a hotlinks document that students can use to go directly to the websites. The teacher will need to consider students' reading levels when selecting which website the students will use. You can find possible websites , based on student reading level, listed under Materials. In addition, you can find suggestions for Webtools to use for bookmarking websites for research.

Support Resources on the Web

The following websites provide alternate strategies and information for differentiation of lesson:

Apply appropriate elements of UDL

English Language Learners

National Association for Gifted Children


Consider the need for Accessible Instructional Materials (AIM) when selecting texts, and captioned/described video when selecting video or other media for this lesson.

Special Education and 504 LD Online

Maryland Learning Links


Prepare for small group/guided reading instruction by selecting appropriate text and materials. Make connections to the unit concept of Our Environment wherever possible.

Essential Questions

  • What is an environment?

  • How do we harm the environment?

  • How do we help the environment?

  • How can we save the Earth?

  • How can we share our knowledge about the environment?

  • What role do I play in the environment?

Unit Standards Applicable to this Lesson

Reading: Informational Text

RI.1.5 Know and use various text features (e.g., headings, tables of contents, glossaries, electronic menus, icons) to locate key facts or information in a text.

RI.1.6 Distinguish between information provided by pictures or other illustrations and information provided by the words in a text.


W.1.8 With guidance and support from adults, recall information from experiences or gather information from provided sources to answer a question.

Speaking & Listening

SL.1.2 Ask and answer questions about key details in a text read aloud or information presented orally or through other media.

Student Outcomes

  • Students will read about various environments in order to ask and answer questions about key details in a text.

  • Students will identify information learned from the photos and text about environments.

  • Students will include information from an informational text to write about their opinion.




Possible websites for habitat pictures (to be used by struggling readers)

What's It Like Where You Live?

Online database for on level readers

The Emergent Reader Research Solution

Possible websites for high level readers

Enchanted Learning: Biomes

National Geographic: Deserts

National Geographic: Grassland

National Geographic: Rainforest

National Geographic:Tundra

Graphic organizer, one per student


Pre-assess student knowledge of habitats by displaying a series of pictures of habitats and living things. Have students identify and match pictures of the places and the living things that might live there.

Technology Option- Teachers create a classflow lesson/activity which would allow students to work individually or in small groups to match the pictures. This would provide teachers with real-time data and allow for discussion and collaboration.(

Lesson Procedure

  1. Discuss the activity above. Ask: How do you know the polar bear lives in the arctic? Why wouldn’t you find a polar bear in the desert? Guide students to the understanding that a habitat is an animal's environment. It provides the animals with what they need to survive.  

Technology Option- Show students the following Youtube video, which explains the vocabulary term “habitat”. You will want to stop at 2:28 on the video. Animal Habitats, Animal Homes

  1. Tell students there are many different types of habitats in the world. Tell students they will be using both text and pictures to learn about different habitats that can make up an environment for a living thing.

  2. Model how to use either a picture or a piece of text to gather information about a habitat. As the teacher reads, she will "stop and jot" information learned on a graphic organizer or a tree map thinking map. Gather information related to the following categories: water, weather/temperature, soil, plants, animals).

  • If the teacher is using a picture, she can think aloud using her five senses ("I see … in this habitat." "I hear…in this habitat.").

Technology Option- Pebblego ( offers a wide variety of texts on different habitats. This resource also has a text reading option for students that are struggling readers.

  1. The teacher will select either the cooperative learning activity or the teacher directed activity to continue recording information about additional habitats.

  2. Cooperative Learning Activity (jigsaw strategy)

  • Place students in home groups; assign each student in a group to a "habitat" work groups (eg. desert, rainforest, deciduous rainforest, tundra, marsh/wetlands, grasslands)

Technology Option: Create an AnswerGarden to go with each habitat. As students read or examine images, they can record their learning on the AnswerGarden. Students can easily share their information with each other and add new learning throughout the unit. 

    • To differentiate based on students' reading abilities:

      • students can use websites to gather and record information regarding the water, weather/temperature, soil, plants, and animals within the habitat

      • students can use pictures of various habitats to record information according to the five senses (What do you see in this habitat? What do you hear in this habitat? What can you taste in this habitat?)

    • Students return to home groups to share the information they learned.

  • Teacher Directed Activity (in lieu of jigsaw strategy)

    • The teacher will present a picture of a habitat. Students will use their 5 senses to record information about the habitat.

    • Repeat with different habitat pictures.

  • Allow students an opportunity to turn and talk with each other. With their partner, the students will take turns teaching their partners about their habitat.

Lesson Extension

Students create a commercial or brochure to persuade someone to come and visit the habitat they researched.

Technology Options- Voki, Blabberize, aknd Vocaroo are all web tools that allow students to record themselves talking without recording their faces.

Lesson Closure

Pose the following question: Would you want to live in the habitat you researched? Why or why not? Be sure to use information from your research to defend your thinking?


  1. Teacher observation of the following:

  • participation in class discussions

  • contributions to class charts

  • quality responses to questions

  • participation in cooperative learning activities

  • Student ability to respond to the prompt and provide evidence from their research to support their response.

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