Lesson plan

Endangered Species Exploration

Teach your students the importance of text features with informational readings about endangered species around the world. This lesson on wildlife doubles as a great way for young learners to hone their reading comprehension skills.
Grade Subject View aligned standards

Students will be able to identify the main features of a text. They will also be able to compare and contrast two different animals using a Venn diagram.

(20 minutes)
  • Tell students that they will be learning about a few endangered species around the world.
  • Write the word species on the board, and ask for a few volunteers to define the word.
  • Discuss and write the definition of species on the board: a category of living things identified by a two-part scientific name. Give an example, e.g. homo sapiens.
  • Write the word endangered on the board, and ask for a few volunteers to define the word.
  • Discuss and write the definition of endangered on the board: threatened by extinction.
  • As a class, create a definition for the phrase "endangered species," and write it on the board.
  • Explain to the students they are going to watch a video clip about an endangered species called the Sumatran Rhinoceros, then play the Wildlife Documentaries 2015: The Most Endangered Animals video clip. Stop at 18:45.
(10 minutes)
  • Hand out the Endangered Species: Sumatran Rhinoceros worksheet and Text Features sheet to each student.
  • Display the Sumatran Rhinoceros worksheet for the class to see. Read the instructions aloud.
  • Display the Text Features sheet for the class to see.
  • Model each direction on your own Rhinoceros worksheet and have students complete each direction after you have modeled it.
(10 minutes)
  • Have students keep the Text Feature sheet on their desk and set the Sumatran Rhinoceros worksheet aside.
  • Have the other Endangered Species worksheets laid out on an table or easily accessed area in the room.
  • Tell the students to independently read and complete another Endangered Species worksheet using the Text Features worksheet directions.
  • Show the students where in the room the other worksheets are, and dismiss them to pick up other sheets of their choice.
(10 minutes)
  • Have students work independently on their Endangered Species worksheets while monitoring and helping as needed.
  • Enrichment: Have advanced students write a few paragraphs about the animals they chose on the back of their Venn diagram sheets.
  • Support: Allow struggling students to work in pairs during Guided Practice.
(5 minutes)
  • Collect students' work at the end of the lesson. Review their responses later as an informal assessment of whether the lesson objectives were met.
(15 minutes)
  • Play another clip from the video.
  • Have students complete a Venn Diagram (two items per section) to compare and contrast a species they completed on a worksheet and the animal shown in the clip.

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