These resources have been reviewed and selected by STEM Learning’s team of education specialists for factual accuracy and relevance to teaching STEM subjects in UK schools.

Biodiversity and habitat loss

This resource from the European Space Agency climate change resource pack explores the topic of biodiversity and how habitat loss is a key driver of global biodiversity loss occurring today. In a series of activities students explore the importance of biodiversity focusing in particular on distributions of common species of plants and animals in their own localities.

A background reading task introduces key terminology and relationships between climate change and ecosystems including habitat loss. There is an opportunity for practical field study work in the second activity. Simple surveying techniques using homemade equipment (smartphones and quadrats from pizza boxes) provide a measure of the biodiversity in the local area, this could be in the school grounds or a day trip elsewhere. Finally, the internet can be used in conjunction with the 'Climate from Space' web application in the third activity that looks at changes to abiotic factors that affect habitats. These are non-living chemical and physical parts of the environment that affect the functioning of the ecosystem. Students can research how different local species such as grasses or insect populations have altered over a period of time in their area and relate this to climate change and habitat loss.

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