Sunday, November 27, 2011

Annotated Bib - Plant Benefits

Plants provide oxygen, homes, and food for many animals - including humans! This post includes books and websites on plants in different geographic areas, products that are make from plants, and how plants can help soil erosion.

In Virginia students learn these items in second grade. The resources in this post are most appropriate for grades 2 and 3. (SOL and Background Info at end of post.)


How Monkeys Make Chocolate: Unlocking the Mysteries of the Rainforest. By Adrian Forsyth. 2006, 48p. Maple Tree Press, (978-1897066782). Gr. 2 - 6.
Forsyth, an Ecologist, explores the rainforest and its inhabitants and also describes products that are made from the plants that inhabit the Rainforests.

If I Ran the Rainforest: All About Tropical Rainforests
. By Bonnie Worth. Illus. by Aristides Ruiz. 2003. 48p. Random House Books for Young Readers, (978-0375810978). Gr. K - 3.
The Cat in the Hat takes students through the understory, canopy, and emergent layers of a tropical rain forest, encountering a host of plants, animals, and native peoples along the way.

Plant Products (The Life of Plants). By Louise Spilsbury and Richard Spilsbury. 2008. 48p. Heinemann-Raintree (978-1432915100). Gr. 2 - 5.
Students will learn many interesting facts about what comes from plants and how plants are used.

Soil Erosion and How to Prevent It (Everybody Digs Soil)
. By Natalie Hyde. 2010. 32p. Crabtree Publishing Co., (978-0778754169). Gr. 2-5.
Describes the processes of weathering, erosion, the impact of erosion on plants and animals, and kid-friendly steps to preventing erosion.

Where Do Plants Grow? (World of Plants). By Louise Spilsbury and Richard Spilsbury. 2005. 32p. Heinemann-Raintree (978-1403473677). Gr. 1-5.
Discusses the habitats of different plants and how they adapt to survive in different locations.


This site has information to teach students how to grow a garden and can even help you start a school garden.

This site has videos, games, and animation for students and lesson plans, multiple databases, and resources for teachers.


This site is full of information about everything on earth - literally. It helps teach students how to take care of our plant. There is a special section about plants.

Rainforest Action Network
Tons of information on how we can save the rainforests. Includes a site for kids.

University of Illinois

This site has lots of fun and user friendly games for students to place regarding plants and their products and regions. There is also a teacher's guide.

For Teachers

2.8 The student will investigate and understand that plants produce oxygen and food, are a source of useful products, and provide benefits in nature. Key concepts include

a) important plant products are identified and classified;

b) the availability of plant products affects the development of a geographic area;

c) plants provide oxygen, homes, and food for many animals; and

d) plants can help reduce erosion.

Background Information From Curriculum Framework

  • Plants provide many useful products and materials, which benefit human beings as well as other living organisms.
  • Plant products include such essentials as oxygen and food, as well as materials useful for clothing and shelter.
  • Plants may grow well in certain geographic areas, thus enabling the production of plant products that allow humans to live in and thrive in those areas.
  • Plants provide homes and food sources for many animals.
  • Plants are important in the prevention of soil erosion.
  • Products from plants include, but are not limited to, cinnamon from the bark of trees; fiber from reeds, grasses and trees; cotton from a cotton plant; spices from various plant parts; lumber from wood; rubber from rubber trees; and medicines (e.g., aloe vera from the aloe plant, quinine from the bark of Cinchona trees found in South America to treat malaria).

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