Deserts

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The lesson introduces students to a desert and its characteristics.  Many students have heard of deserts and immediately think of sand and heat, but not understand deserts can also be cold and include the habitats for living things.  It is recommended you use a video to give the students a closer look at desert life.

DesertsLesson Plan Includes:

  • Full Teacher Guidelines with Creative Teaching Ideas
  • Instructional Content Pages about Deserts
  • Hands-on homework activities giving students practice on identifying and using Deserts
  • Answer Keys
  • Common Core State Standards
  • Many Additional Links and Resources
  • Built for Grades 1-3 but can be adapted for other grade levels.

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Description

When students think of deserts, they immediately think of sand and heat. Rarely do they also know that deserts can be cold, and also include the habitats for living things. Their misconceptions will be alleviated as you guide them through this lesson. It is recommended you use a video to give the students a closer look at desert life.

Sample Classroom Procedure / Teacher Instruction

  1. Display a world map.  Place blank Post-it notes next to some of the deserts of the world.  Ask students what the different places may have in common.
  2. Allow for responses and discussion.  Distribute a very small amount of sand to each student.  Ask:  Where do you think this sand could have come from?  What is sand?
  3. Allow for responses and discussion.  Introduce Deserts telling students sand may be found in deserts, but deserts can also include icy areas of the world.
  4. Distribute Deserts content pages.  Read and review the information with the students.  Save the final question for the lesson closing.  Use the additional resources to enhance understanding.
  5. Distribute Activity page.  Read and review the instructions.  Distribute colored pencils.  Display completed images in the classroom. 
  6. Distribute Practice page.  Review instructions, distribute colored pencils.  Remind students to shade the deserts the same color.  Check and review the students’ responses.
  7. Distribute the Homework page.  The next day, check and review the students’ responses.
  8. In closing, ask:   What would be the best part about living in a desert?  Why?
  9. Allow for responses and discussion. 
  10. Refer to the lesson opening and show students the different deserts and their names from the world map.  Identify the cold deserts.

Common Core State Standards: 

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.1.B , CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.1.4 , CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.1.2 , CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.1.5, CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.2.3, CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.2.4, CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.2.7 , CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.2.2, CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.3.3, CCSS.ELA- Literacy.RI.3.4, CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.3.2

Class Sessions (45 minutes): At least 2 class sessions.

Additional Resources:

Want more science resources? Check out our other Science Lesson Plans!

Additional information

Grade Level

1st Grade, 2nd Grade, 3rd Grade

Subject

Science