Terrestrial Biomes of the World


    “My daughter took the biomes class through Athena’s academy.  She LOVED the class!  What she, AND I, loved most was that class work could be completed using any medium the student preferred.  For a neurodivergent learner such as [my daughter] that is key to her success.  The entire class was wonderful and I can’t wait for my younger son to be ready to take the same class! But while the entire class (teacher, students, content) was wonderful, the ability to learn the way that works best for each student it what is key!”  ~Parent Joelle D.



    Step 1: Register Your Student

    Step 2: Enroll Your Registered Student

    Dense trees for Terrestrial Biomes of the World course at Athena's Advanced Academy
    InstructorProf. Becky Mentzer Riethmeier
    Content LevelsGrades 7-8 • Junior High
    Grades 9-10 • Lower High School
    Course Length16 Weeks
    Live Webinars Held OnMondays, 2:00 - 2:50 PM Pacific - 8/12/24 - 12/13/24

    Do you know your home biome? A biome is a large geographical area that includes similar types of plants and animals that are uniquely adapted to that area.

    In Terrestrial Biomes we will learn about these large geographic regions of our earth, their climate and what lives there. Students will be able to identify and distinguish the 7 major biomes of the world (deciduous forest, grasslands, tundra, desert, coniferous forest, Mediterranean scrub, and rainforest) and also the plants and animals found in each one.

    Along the way, students will be introduced to some of the major themes of Ecology, including adaptation, natural selection, organisms’ roles in an ecosystem, population dynamics, the cycling of matter, and the flow of energy.

    What to expect in the Required section in the classroom each week:

    • Complete a reading from a provided Internet link.
    • Participate in a weekly forum, either sharing their reflections from the reading, or answering questions about it.
    • Nearly every-other week, complete a project, based on student research.

    What to expect in the Highly Suggested & Optional sections in the classroom each week:

    • To excite learners and to add depth to the subject matter, curated resources, including websites & videos, are provided.
    • Our last week is “student presentation week” where students learn about their favorite terrestrial biome and teach their classmates about it!

    What to expect during the weekly webinar:

    • Weekly webinars are 50 minutes long. Webinars are recorded and are available for students with schedule conflicts.
    • Primary instruction and guided discussions are provided during live webinars.
    • Active Participation (via the microphone and chat) in online class discussions.

    Before taking this course, students should be able to: 

    • Read at a solid 7th grade level or above.
    • Write a paragraph independently.

    Students should be willing to:

    • Actively participate (via the microphone) in the class discussion.
    • Encourage class discussion by adding their questions/ideas in the chat window during the webinar.
    • Respond with positive and encouraging comments on their classmates’ posts in the classroom forums.

    Required books & materials:

    Optional materials: If you would like a print, college-level resource for this subject, “Professor Becky” highly recommends this textbook —

    • Biomes of Earth: Terrestrial, Aquatic, and Human-Dominated  by Susan L. Woodward. It can be found used or new from a number of online sources.
      • ISBN-13: 978-0313319778o
      • ISBN-10: 0313319774
    • Optional readings from this text will be posted for higher level students who want more challenge.