How to Make a Biome Project Out of a Shoebox

The rainforest is a biome that is rich in exotic plant and animal life.
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Biomes are classified by geographic regions in which various plants and animals live that have made adaptations for surviving in those regions. Biomes are also comprised of the abiotic factors, or nonliving items, in the environment including water, temperature and type of soil. These living and nonliving factors create unique ecosystems that have their own food chains and present challenges for all living things. To display features of a particular biome, use a shoebox to create a diorama with features, plants and animals that are specific to that biome.

    Research the biome you selected for your project. Focus on what plant and animal life is specific to the region. Look for both predators and prey items to establish an example of the biome's food chain. Locate pictures of these plants and animals to use in your biome, using magazines or the Internet. Write down specific features such as the amount of rainfall and average temperature for the region.

    Create the background for the biome on the inside of the shoebox. For example, if the biome selected is a desert, place a thin layer of glue on the floor of the shoebox and cover it with sand. The back and sides may represent mountains in the background and blue skies, since it rarely rains in the desert. Use paint, construction paper, markers or colored pencils to create the background setting. Ensure that the features that you add are consistent with the biome.

    Glue the pictures from Step 1 onto heavy card stock or cardboard and allow them to dry. Cut out the pictures.

    Place additional features into the diorama for the setting. For example, in an Alpine biome, plants and animals live in mountainous areas so adding rocks to the diorama is appropriate.

    Add the plants and animals into the diorama setting. Glue the pieces into place. Use small pieces of cardboard behind the pictures for support if you are not gluing the picture to the back or sides of the shoebox.

    Write a report regarding your biome. In the report discuss what abiotic factors are present in the biome and briefly cover the plants and animals in your diorama and what adaptations make them special. Place the report with the biome diorama by placing it in front or attaching to the side of the shoebox.

    Things You'll Need

    • Glue
    • Paint
    • Construction paper
    • Markers
    • Card stock or cardboard

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