< Back to: Activities

Comparing Habitats - Grassland and Woodland

Learning Objectives


  • Use a variety of techniques to find and observe animals in the environment
  • That different kinds of animals may be found in different habitats
  • Use keys to identify different animals
  • Use dataloggers and other field study equipment to record collect information
  • Create food chains and webs based on the livings things discovered


  • Understand the interdependence of living things
  • Develop appreciation of the environment and personal responsibility for its conservation
  • Understand that animals can be grouped according to observable similarities and differences
  • Create graphs and tables from their findings

Key words/phrases

Adaptation, food chain, food web, keys, identification, habitat, environment, temperature, datalogger, fair test, repeat testing, degrees Celsius, quadrat


Centre staff will welcome your group and describe the day’s programme, learning objectives, and the health and safety issues. (10 mins)

½ Day Course Programme

  • Discussion on Habitats. Grassland and woodland to be visited. (5 mins)
  • Pupils put into 6 groups. (5 mins)
  • Question: “Which habitat will contain the greater mix (diversity) of minibeasts and why?” In groups pupils make their prediction and justify it. (5 mins)
  • Demonstrate datalogger: measures light and temperature so physical factors can be compared. (5 mins)
  • Question: “How do we make it a fair test?” (5 mins)
  • Walk to grassland habitat (Nelson’s Grove). (10 mins)
  • Use quadrats to survey area, take light and temperature readings. (15 mins)
  • Go to Woodland habitat (Henry’s Grove). (5 mins)
  • Use quadrats to survey area, take light and temperature readings. (15 mins)
  • Back to the centre. (10 mins)

Detailed activity sheets can be found in the Science in the Environment curriculum material. Copies available at the centre.


Back at the Centre the group will reflect on their day and consider how well the learning objectives have been met. Look at readings from dataloggers on digital projector (5 – 10 mins).

Safety Considerations

Weather Conditions and clothing

Some outdoor clothing and footwear is available at the Centre but please ensure that children are dressed warmly and have suitable waterproof outerwear. Activities will take place in all but the most severe weather conditions. The centre teacher will contact the group leader if conditions are unsafe for the visit to continue.

Equipment supplied:

ID keys, observation pots, hand lenses, clipboards, recording sheets, first aid kit, dataloggers, pencils, quadrats.

Equipment needed from school:


Other Information

The actual programme may vary depending on the number and needs of pupils, length of visit and weather conditions.


White boards can be taken out to construct food chains for a particular habitat and to draw bar charts for comparing habitats and datalogger results.
More difficult vocabulary can be used: Ecosystem, primary, secondary, tertiary consumers, detrivores, succession.