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Smithsonian Science Education Center


3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th


Science, Biology, Earth and Space Sciences

Resource Types

  • Interactive Media
  • Games

Regional Focus


Habitat Game

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  • In this interactive game, students drag and drop animals into their correct ecological habitats. 
  • Students will discover the animals that live in deserts, coral reefs, jungles, and marshes. 
Teaching Tips


  • Game-based learning has been proven to be a powerful supplement to more traditional styles of instruction and this engaging game would be a great addition to lessons. 
  • This game gives students multiple opportunities to try again with written prompts if they are incorrect the first time. 

Additional Prerequisites

  • There is a brief paragraph about habitats before students play the game, but students should be introduced to the animals and habitats in the game before playing. 
  • Reviewing the directions to this game with students might support some learners, since there is no audio.
  • Students can play this game on a desktop or laptop computer and need to be proficient with drag-and-drop. 


  • Consider facilitating a discussion after students have played the game including questions like "What features of the habitats helped you determine which animals might be able to survive there?" 
  • Students receive immediate feedback after an incorrect answer along with information about the animal that might help them make a better selection, which will be helpful for strong readers, but younger students may need additional guidance.
  • Allowing students to play in pairs may increase engagement and help develop oral discussion skills. 
  • Pair this lesson with other resources on related concepts such as this video that introduces the basics of habitats, this video about the impact of climate change on wildlife and their habitats, this lesson plan about terrestrial biomes around the world, and this activity where students research three biomes. 
Scientist Notes
From this interactive game, students can learn how to cross-match different kinds of animals to their specific ecological habitats. This is recommended.
  • Science
    • LS1: Structures and Processes
      • K-LS1-1. Use observations to describe patterns of what plants and animals (including humans) need to survive.
    • LS2: Interactions, Energy, and Dynamics Within Ecosystems
      • MS-LS2-2. Construct an explanation that predicts patterns of interactions among organisms across multiple ecosystems.
    • LS4: Biological Evolution
      • 2-LS4-1. Make observations of plants and animals to compare the diversity of life in different habitats.
      • 3-LS4-3. Construct an argument with evidence that in a particular habitat some organisms can survive well, some survive less well, and some cannot survive at all.
  • Social Studies
    • Geography
      • SS.Geog1.b.1-2 Identify physical and human characteristics of a place using maps, graphs, photographs, and other representations.
      • SS.Geog1.a.4-5 Summarize how location (absolute and relative) affects people, places, and the environment. Construct maps (paper or digital), charts, and graphs using appropriate elements (i.e., date, orientation, grid, scale, title, author, index, legend, situation).
      • SS.Geog1.b.m Interpret patterns in a variety of maps, charts, and graphs to display geographic information (contour, cartogram, population, natural resource, historical maps) and explain relationships among them.
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