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Coral Reefs – KS2 Comprehension and Writing Activities Pack

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This unit of work is based on the article ‘Coral Reefs Uncovered’ from issue 5 of Animal Planet magazine.

Pupils will explore the magnificent world of coral reefs, learning about the animals and plants that live in this threatened habitat. The article is used to develop comprehension skills and inspire writing, with the opportunity to write a persuasive text.

Other activities also cover areas of the KS2 science and geography curriculum.

During the unit the pupils will learn how classify corals and animals that live there using a branching key to identify corals before creating their own. They will also investigate how animals are adapted to their environment, identifying the features needed to survive in that habitat.

A comprehension activity is included to check pupils’ understanding of the text and to encourage them to retrieve and record information from non-fiction.

In the writing task, pupils will identify the issues that coral reefs face and how they could be saved. They will then write persuasively about saving coral reefs, identifying their audience and a suitable text type for the reader.

Teachers’ notes are included for each of the activities, with suggested activities to develop the unit further.

This KS2 resource pack includes

  • Copy of the Animal Planet article ‘Coral Reefs Uncovered’.
  • Comprehension question cards (with answer sheet)
  • Identifying corals worksheet
  • Animals that live in coral reefs image cards
  • Corals image cards
  • Planning sheet: persuasive writing
  • Themed writing paper

What is Animal Planet magazine?

This pack has been created in association with Animal Planet magazine, which fuels curious minds, helps children make sense of the world and sparks joy on every page. To find out more, and register your interest in a school subscription, visit https://www.animalplanetmagazine.com/schools

National Curriculum Programme of Study Links

Reading

  • Pupils should develop positive attitudes to reading and understanding of what they read by listening to and discussing a wide range of … non-fiction
  • Pupils should understand what they read by checking that the text makes sense to them, discussing their understanding and exploring the meaning of words in context and asking questions to improve their understanding of the text
  • Pupils should be taught how to retrieve, record and present information from non-fiction

Writing

  • Pupils should plan their writing by discussing and recording ideas (years 5 and 6 also by drawing on research where necessary)
  • Pupils should draft and write by organising paragraphs around a theme and identifying the audience and purpose for writing, selecting the appropriate form

Geography

  • Describe and understand key aspects of physical geography including biomes (coral reefs)

Science

  • Year 4: Pupils should be taught to explore and use classification keys to help group, identify and name a variety of living things in their local and wider environment.
  • Year 6: Pupils should be taught to describe how living things are classified into broad groups according to common observable characteristics …
  • Year 6: Pupils should be taught to identify how plants and animals are adapted to suit their environment in different ways …



  • Copy of the Animal Planet article ‘Coral Reefs Uncovered’.
  • Comprehension question cards (with answer sheet)
  • Identifying corals worksheet
  • Animals that live in coral reefs image cards
  • Coral images cards
  • Planning sheet: persuasive writing
  • Themed writing paper
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