By Tam O'Shaughnessy
Food Webs: You Are What You Eat uses examples and experiences from students’ lives to help them understand the movement of energy through ecosystems. Students learn that food chains form in ecosystems because all organisms need food for energy to stay alive. The book explains that plants on land and phytoplankton in water are producers because they are able to carry out photosynthesis and make their own food. Students learn that other kinds of organisms—consumers—eat the food that producers make and depend on it for their survival. Students discover that ecosystems are complex—most have many food chains that link together and form food webs. Students also come to understand how a diagram of a food web shows the relationships among species in an ecosystem. At the end of each two-page spread, a brief statement called The Bottom Line reinforces students’ understanding by summing up the key ideas about food webs covered in those pages.