Importance of Plants and Animals | Characteristics and Differences between Plants and Animals




Living things include many kinds of organisms – the plants, animals, fungi, etc. that can be readily seen in nature or with a microscope. Living things can be found in every type of habitat on Earth – on land and in lakes, rivers, and oceans. Although all these organisms are very different from one another but have similar characteristics.

Plants are living things that usually make their own food, reproduce, but cannot move around. Animals are living things that can move around, eat food for fuel, and reproduce.



1. Food – plants and animals.

2. Herbal medicine – plants and animals.

3. Raw materials for the industries – plants and animals.

4. Security – animals like dogs.

5. Economic importance – plants and animals




The characteristics of living things are –

1. Movement

Living things like man, dogs, goats, etc. move from one place to another on their own. Forms of movements include, walking, running, jumping, swimming, and flying. Plants also moved but not like man and animals. They move according to stimuli, move towards light and water.

2. Sensitivity/Irritation

Living things respond to conditions around them. For example, cold, heat, etc.

3. Respiration

All living things respire. Take in oxygen and give out carbon dioxide. Plants take in carbon dioxide and give out oxygen.

4. Nutrition

Living things feed on different nutritional foods for growth and development.

5. Growth

All living things grow in height, size and weight. Plants continue to grow throughout their life time while man and animals stop at a certain stage of life.

6. Reproduction

All living things have the ability to produce their young ones. Man and animals release waste in form of urine, carbon oxide, sweat, etc. While plants also do the same in form of water, gum, etc.

7. Excretion

This is the ability to remove waste from the body.

8. Death

When living things are unable to carry out all these activities, they are said to be death.




1. Movement

Plants do not move on their own, they are generally rooted in one place. While animals have the ability to move from one place to another.

2. Feeding

Plants make their own food because they contain chlorophyll. While animals depend on plants and other animals.

3. Respiration

Plants give take in carbon oxide and give out oxygen. While animals take in oxygen and give out carbon oxide.

4. Sensitivity

Plants have no ability to Sense. While animals have a very high sensory and nervous system.

5. Growth

Plants continue to grow in height, size and weight throughout their life time. While animals stop to grow at a particular time.




1. Living things including plants and animals. Discuss.

2. List and discuss 5 characteristics of living things.

3. Differentiate between plants and animals.

4. Describe yourself as a living thing.



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