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Decomposers | Activity 6.3b

Activity 6.3b: Functions of All Decomposers (50 min)

Students synthesize their learning to answer the Three Questions for how all decomposers grow, move, and function.

Note: There are two options for this activity, 6.3a and 6.3b. In 6.3a, students will compare decomposers, plants, and animals to determine if decomposers are more like plants or animals. In 6.3b, students will develop a summary explanation for decomposers. We recommend teaching one of the two options based on what units you have previously taught and the type of review that would be most useful for your students.

Materials You Provide

  • computers (1 per pair of students, for option 2 in step 3)
  • blank posters (1 per pair of students or small group, for option 3 in step 3)

Resources Provided


Decide how students will construct their explanations (see options in step 3 of the directions). If students will use the worksheet, prepare one copy of 6.3b Functions of All Decomposers Worksheet for each student. If students will create a PowerPoint, check that computers or tablets are working and ready. If students will make a poster, get one poster for each pair of students or small group. Decide how you will have students present their explanations (see step 4 of the directions). Prepare a computer and a projector to display the PPT.


1. Use the instructional model to show students where they are in the course of the unit.

Display slide 2 of the 6.3b Functions of All Decomposers PPT.


Use the 6.3b Grading the Functions of All Animals Worksheet to grade students’ explanations. Regardless of how students constructed their explanations, they should include similar information.