Students take a census of an outdoor site, and look for organisms that perform different “jobs” in the biotic community. A biotic (or natural) community is made up of the various organisms that live and interact with one another in a particular environment. As in a human community, its members have different roles and depend on each other for survival. In this activity, students examine a study area to find out what organisms live there and the ecological jobs or niches they fill.
The Zinn Education Project promotes and supports the teaching of people’s history in middle and high school classrooms across the country. The website offers free, downloadable lessons and articles organized by theme, time period, and reading level. The Zinn Education Project is coordinated by two non-profit organizations, Rethinking Schools and Teaching for Change.