They are a vital part of the Earth's ecology. Discover the rainforests with these worksheets.

Rainforests contain millions of different species of plants, animals, and insects that form a complex ecosystem that is essential to the life of the entire planet. In addition to important respiratory functions and fresh water reserves, they are also the source of many life-saving drugs. Unfortunately, the rainforests are being threatened by development. Tropical rainforests are areas that covered in thick vegetation and filled with one of the widest collections of unique creatures and plant life. The rainforest is home to half of all known living species. Due to all the plant life they yield a great deal of water vapor through evaporation that is used by other biomes. It normally is very warm and very wet in these areas. It has been known to rain up to four hundred inches annual in these regions. This ecosystem covers just under ten percent of the planet and is one of the oldest biomes on Earth having been around since the time of dinosaurs.

This collection of worksheets offers short reading passages, questionnaires, and activity sheets about the plants, animals, and cultures found in the rainforests. Fun Fact: Though they only cover about 2% of the Earth's surface, it is estimated that rainforests house over 50% of the planet's plant and animal species.

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Where Are the Rainforests?

Rainforests are found in the tropics close to the equator, an imaginary line of latitude around the middle of the earth where the weather is the hottest and days and nights are equal at twelve hours each.

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Multiple Choice Questions

The largest rainforest is found on the South American continent along the Amazon River. The Amazon River is the second longest river in the world.

Short Answer Questions

Central Africa is home to the second largest rainforest. This huge area sits right on the equator and is the jungle ecosystem Americans picture when they think of wild Africa.

Where in the World? Map

Highlight the portion of the world map where the largest rainforests are located.

Animals of the Tropical Rainforests

Animals that live in these regions must adapt to life in this special ecosystem. In order to be called a rainforest an area must get at least 80 inches of rainfall a year.

Multiple Choice Questions

Amphibians like frogs, salamanders, and toads are also cold blooded and thrive in the rainforest.

Short Answer Questions

There are thousands of species of unique birds that live in the rainforest. These birds are usually very colorful like the parrot and toucan.

The Plants

The name itself should immediately tell you what type of plants are found the most in the rainforest ecosystem.

Multiple Choice Questions

While there are thousands of species of flowering plants, vines, mosses, ferns and lichens in the rainforest, dense stands of trees dominate the landscape.

Plants Short Answer Questions

Trees in the tropical rainforest have smooth bark and tall trunks. The tree branches don’t emerge until high on the tree to be closer to the sun.

People of the Tropical Rainforests

Rainforests cover about 6% of the Earth's land and they exist in warm regions near the equator.

Multiple Choice Questions

The Yanomami people, another pygmy tribe, live in the Amazon, the largest rainforest in the world. There are only about 32,000 Yanomami people and they live in a protected portion of their original homeland that was set aside by the government of Brazil.

People - Short Answer Questions

The country of Indonesia is made up of thousands of islands off the coast of Southeast Asia, an area known for having rainforests.

Threats to the Rainforests - Reading Passage

Once a species of plant or animal is destroyed, that is becomes extinct; it can never return.

Threats Multiple Choice Questions

Human beings are the ones who are destroying the rainforest. As the human population in tropical areas increases, people need more land for homes and farming so the local people clear the rainforest.

Threats Short Answer Questions

Mining is also a threat to the rainforest. Not only do mining companies tear up the land for mines, they clear areas for roads, buildings and housing for miners.

The Importance of the Rainforests Reading Passage

Tropical rainforests are important to the earth because they store over half of the earth's rainwater.

Importance - Multiple Choice Questions

The rainforest has a continuous cycle of rain and evaporation that circulates fresh water without it being stored in lakes or rivers.

Short Answer Questions

Indigenous people know which plants to use for medicines. Already 25% of our modern medicines available at the drug store come from rainforest plants.

Research Key

Using the charts below research the plants and animals found in this area. Describe 3 plants and 3 animals found in the rainforest that have a significant importance to humans.

Preserving the Rainforests- Reading Passage

Not-for-profit foundations are groups of people who are interested in tackling social issues and these groups use the money they earn for their cause.

Preserving Multiple Choice Questions

It's easy to think that if the rainforest trees are cut down, the soil will be good for farming since it already grows lush tropical vegetation.

Preserving - Short Answer Questions

It's easy to think that if the rainforest trees are cut down, the soil will be good for farming since it already grows lush tropical vegetation.

Black and White Venn Diagram

Use the Venn to compare where you live and a rainforest.

Colored Venn Diagram

The color diagram is the same as above, just some extra ink.

The Four Wonderful Layers - Reading Passage

Tropical rainforests contain animals, insects and plants that are adapted to the warm climate and rainy conditions.

Layers Description Page

Describe the layers of the rainforest. Describe the plant and animal life found within each layer.

The Animal Shuffle

Match the animal to the layer of the rainforest they would be found in. Remember, some animals can be found in more than one layer.

Multiple Choice Questions

The emergent layer is the highest part of the rainforest where the tallest trees tower above everything.

Short Answer Questions

The black-and-white colobus monkey is one of the few mammals that live in the emergent layer of the African rainforest.

Where Are They? Reading

A rainforest is anyplace on earth that gets a minimum of 80 inches of rain per year. Most spots on earth that get that much rain per year are located in the tropics, an area in the middle of the planet near the equator.

Where - Multiple Choice Questions

In some rainforest areas the rainfall can occur almost equally throughout the year.

Short Answer Questions

Remember that the definition of a rainforest depends on the number of inches of rain that falls annually.

How Is the Weather? - Reading

The warmest parts of the earth lie along the equator and the further north or south a location is from the equator, the colder the climate can become.

Multiple Choice Questions

Areas of the Amazon rainforest receive 70 to 100 inches of rain per year. While that’s a lot of rain, the days are still sunny and bright.

Short Answer Questions and Chart Reading

Describe the location of the earth’s equator and the poles and explain how these influence weather.