Desert Biome for Special Education Nonpolar and Polar Deserts


Total Pages 200 plus 34 google slides
Answer Key Included
Teaching Duration 3 Weeks


This unit on the Desert Biome contains almost 200 pages PLUS 36 google slides of material specifically designed for students with special learning needs, especially autism.


This unit addresses the main characteristics of the desert biome including nonpolar and polar deserts. All the information is presented in a simplified but rigorous way for students with diverse learning needs to make meaningful and authentic connections to the material.


There are many opportunities for students to engage in repeated information on what makes this biome different and so important to the survival of the planet.


In addition, many activities and assessments include more than one version, suggestions for differentiation, and options for presentation.


The digital activities were created using google slides and can be used with google classroom.


Each digital activity comes in 2 versions. The original plus one with color-coding to add more visual support for students who need more support. There is also a link to a movie version of both books included in the unit that students can watch online.


There are directions on how to access the digital activities and movie in a pdf included in this unit. There are also suggestions on the easiest way to assign the appropriate activities to each student.



For more on Biomes check out these units

⭐ Terrestrial Biomes Overview: Forests, Grasslands, Deserts, and Tundra

⭐ Tundra Biome

⭐ Forest Biome

⭐ Grasslands Biome

⭐ Salt and Freshwater Ecosystems

⭐ Ecology unit which includes Biomes and Food Chains



See the preview for a more detailed look at the contents.



Desert Biome Unit Includes:


⭐ This unit comes in 2 complete files. One is in color and one is in black and white.


In the zipped folder you will find:

  • 14 days of lesson plans
  • Desert Biome activities in color
  • Desert Biome activities in black and white
  • Voice-recorded PowerPoint show
  • Desert Biome book (PowerPoint) to use with activities
  • Links and directions to digital activities


Desert Biome Activities:

⭐ Covers nonpolar deserts and polar deserts

  • Vocabulary board
  • 11 Vocabulary cards and cut/paste activities (plus digital versions)
  • Who am I cards for group activity
  • Bingo cards
  • 2 Circle maps (plus digital version)
  • Venn diagram (plus digital versions)
  • Map to color each desert region
  • Collages of each type of desert (plus digital versions)
  • Writing prompt (plus digital versions)
  • 4 Cut and paste close worksheets (plus digital versions)
  • 2 Sudoku puzzles (plus digital version)
  • Word search
  • Assessments (3 versions) (plus digital versions)


Much of what I have learned about curriculum development is incorporated into these units. For example, do not be afraid of repetition. It is critical that students with significant disabilities get to experience material over several days to be able to assimilate what is being taught fully. Also, adding visual supports to your printables and class activities helps students be able to pay more attention to the content you are presenting rather than the mechanics of what is expected. Finally, ask questions. Good questions!! Regardless of the material, asking students good questions will push them to think more deeply than before.