WHAT IS NATURE
LESSON 2

HOW POLLINATORS REBUILD OUR WORLD'S ECOSYSTEMS
AND HOW YOU CAN HELP THEM

Lessons and Activities
Learning about pollinators, the resources they need to survive in their environment,
and how cross-pollination is vital for ecosystem recovery and resilience.
Recommended for ages 10-14.
HERE’S WHAT YOU’LL LEARN
  • Ecosystems are complex and interconnected. 
  • The importance of a healthy ecosystem.
  • How nutrients and energy are cycled through the ecosystem.
LEARNING OBJECTIVES
  • Learn what resources plants and animals need to survive
  • Explain the 2 processes of pollination and which one increases genetic diversity
  • Explain how pollinators and plants have evolved in response to each other 
  • Understand how different flower shapes appeal to different pollinators
  • Understand that pollinators “see” color differently than humans
  • Research local pollinators and native plants

RESOURCES USED TO CREATE WHAT IS NATURE LESSON 2: HOW POLLINATORS REBUILD OUR WORLD’S ECOSYSTEMS AND HOW YOU CAN HELP THEM

Water resource 

  • https://ento.psu.edu/research/centers/pollinators/public-outreach/cert/cert-steps-step2
  • https://seeds.ca/sw8/web/pollination/pollinator-gardens#:~:text=Know%20that%20native%20bees%20do,mud%20puddles%20or%20even%20birdbaths.
  • https://homeguides.sfgate.com/make-butterfly-puddling-pool-104284/
  • https://www.batcon.org/article/water-for-wildlife/#:~:text=The%20water%20is%20algae%20green,sip%20from%20this%20vital%20resource.

Pollinator syndrome chart & activity references

  • https://images.app.goo.gl/9nCRJdpStCKPNQcV6
  • https://images.app.goo.gl/iJs6HUi3V5tCdsMs7
  • https://extension.missouri.edu/publications/m402
  • https://hort.extension.wisc.edu/articles/datura/
  • https://www.researchgate.net/publication/257447641_Nectar_ecology_of_Datura_ferox_Solanaceae_An_invasive_weed_with_nocturnal_flowers_in_agro-ecosystems_from_central_Argentina
  • https://www.mortonarb.org/trees-plants/tree-plant-descriptions/trumpet-honeysuckle
  • https://www.hummingbird-guide.com/honeysuckle-for-hummingbirds/
  • http://www.missouribotanicalgarden.org/PlantFinder/PlantFinderDetails.aspx?taxonid=275970#:~:text=Asimina%20triloba%2C%20commonly%20called%20pawpaw,to%20form%20colonies%20or%20thickets

Flower shapes and tables

  • http://theseedsite.co.uk/flowershapes/
  • https://www.nationalgeographic.org/encyclopedia/habitat/
  • https://prod-media.coolaustralia.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/06191751/Adaptations-Bee-and-plant-factsheet-2.pdf

Pollinator garden design 

  • https://www.honey-plants.com/calendar/ontario/
  • https://cvc.ca/wp-content/uploads/2017/04/17-uo-nativeplantsforpollinators-booklet-v8-web.pdf
  • https://seeds.ca/sw8/web/pollination/pollinator-gardens#:~:text=Know%20that%20native%20bees%20do,mud%20puddles%20or%20even%20birdbaths.
  • https://www.pgc.pa.gov/Education/WildlifeNotesIndex/Pages/Bats.aspx
  • https://entomology.cals.cornell.edu/extension/wild-pollinators/native-bees-your-backyard/

Who pollinates your favorite food activity

  • https://www.pollinator.org/pollinated-food
  • http://blog.umd.edu/agronomynews/2020/06/29/beetles-and-pollination/
  • http://blog.umd.edu/agronomynews/2020/06/05/moths-butterflies-and-pollination/
  • https://www.greenmatters.com/p/which-plants-attract-butterflies-pollinators
  • https://www.fs.fed.us/wildflowers/pollinators/animals/moths.shtml
  • https://butterfly-conservation.org/news-and-blog/the-role-of-moths-as-nocturnal-pollinators

Natural pest control

  • https://www.buglogical.com/praying-mantis/#:~:text=Mantis%20have%20enormous%20appetites%2C%20eating,mantises%20actually%20make%20great%20pets.
  • https://learn.eartheasy.com/guides/natural-garden-pest-control/
  • https://www.pitchcare.com/news-media/pesticides-a-brief-history-and-analysis/
  • https://premeditatedleftovers.com/gardening/how-to-attract-praying-mantis-to-your-garden/
  • https://byjus.com/chemistry/pesticides/#:~:text=Examples%20of%20pesticides%20are%20fungicides,%2C%20DDT%2C%20Malathion%2C%20etc
  • https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/garden-how-to/info/baking-soda-on-plants.htm#:~:text=Sodium%20bicarbonate%20as%20a%20fungicide,the%20potential%20for%20foliar%20burn.
  • https://www.thespruce.com/companion-planting-1402735

Build a bug hotel

  • https://www.wildlifetrusts.org/actions/how-make-bee-hotel

Pollination

  • https://www.pollinationguelph.ca/quickfacts
  • https://www.space.com/17638-how-big-is-earth/#:~:text=Using%20those%20measurements%2C%20the%20equatorial,miles%20(40%2C008%20km)%20around.

Coevolution

  • https://www.wnps.org/blog/coevolution-and-pollination
  • https://lpi.oregonstate.edu/sites/lpi.oregonstate.edu/files/pdf/hyp/lessons-manuals/K12/K5/grade_two_pollinator_adaptations.pdf
  • https://www.fs.fed.us/wildflowers/pollinators/Plant_Strategies/scent.shtml#:~:text=A%20pollinator%20detects%20a%20flower’s,%2C%20spicy%2C%20or%20fruity%20odors
  • https://www.calacademy.org/educators/lesson-plans/flowers-seeking-pollinators
  • https://sites.google.com/site/sjipollinators/home/about
  • https://www.sciencefriday.com/educational-resources/bumblebee-static-electricity/
  • https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0003347281800218
  • https://www.wildflower.org/plants/result.php?id_plant=astr
  • https://beeaware.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2020/07/Papaya-pollination-brochure.pdf
  • https://www.gardenia.net/plant/allium-hollandicum-purple-sensation-ornamental-onion
  • https://www.finegardening.com/article/alliums-all-season-long
  • https://cwf-fcf.org/en/resources/encyclopedias/flora/aster/
  • https://www.woodlandtrust.org.uk/trees-woods-and-wildlife/plants/wild-flowers/dog-rose/
  • https://www.biodiversityireland.ie/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/Pollinator-friendly-planting-code-temporary-draft.pdf
  • https://www.nybg.org/blogs/plant-talk/2012/01/people/calabash/#:~:text=The%20flowers%20of%20the%20calabash,by%20a%20slightly%20rotten%20smell.
  • https://www2.palomar.edu/users/warmstrong/ww0503.htm
  • https://www.usgs.gov/faqs/how-many-species-native-bees-are-united-states?qt-news_science_products=0#qt-news_science_products
  • https://www.orkincanada.ca/pests/bees/carpenter-bees/#:~:text=Eastern%20carpenter%20bees%20range%20in,of%20females%20appear%20solid%20black
  • https://www.pollinator.org/guides – USA & Canada
  • https://learn.eartheasy.com/guides/natural-garden-pest-control/
  • https://www.fs.fed.us/wildflowers/pollinators/documents/AttractingPollinatorsV5.pdf
  • https://www.pollinator.org/pollinated-food 
  • https://www.fs.fed.us/wildflowers/pollinators/animals/beetles.shtml
  • https://www.nationalgeographic.org/encyclopedia/habitat/
  • https://www.nwf.org/Garden-for-Wildlife/Wildlife/Attracting-Butterflies#:~:text=Plant%20type%20and%20color%20is,%2Dmorning%20to%20mid%2Dafternoon.
  • https://homeguides.sfgate.com/flower-colors-butterflies-like-pollinate-60735/
  • https://www.fws.gov/pollinators/pdfs/PollinatorBookletFinalrevWeb.pdf
  • https://www.uky.edu/hort/butterflies/all-about-butterflies
  • https://www.nwf.org/en/Magazines/National-Wildlife/2004/Beauty-With-Brains
  • https://phys.org/news/2021-02-scientists-group-caterpillars-poisonous/

Lesson developed by Stephanie Young, Fall 2021

Copyright © New England Primate Conservancy 2021. You may freely use, copy and share these Learning Activities for educational purposes. 
​For questions or comments, e-mail us at [email protected]