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Characteristics of Living
Living things have six
characteristics in common.
All living things:
• have cells.
• sense and respond
to change.
• reproduce.
• have DNA.
• use energy.
• grow and develop.
All living things have cells.
• Living things are
composed of one or
more cells
• Smallest unit that
can carry life.
• Living things made
of more than one
cell have specialized
Turn to page 55 in your books
All living things sense and
respond to change
• Stimulus-a change
that affects the
activity of an
• Stimuli can be lights,
sounds, hunger or
anything that causes
an organism to
respond in some
Living things reproduce
• Sexual reproduction- reproduction in which
sex cells from two parents unite to produce
offspring that share traits from both parents.
• Asexual reproduction- reproduction that does
not involve the union of sex cells and in which
one parent produces offspring that are
genetically identical to the parent.
All living things have DNA
• deoxyribonucleic acid
• DNA carries the
instructions for an
organisms traits.
• Parents pass DNA to
their organisms during
• The passing of traits is
called heredity.
All living things use energy.
• Living things use energy to carry out
the chemical activities of life.
• For example;changing energy into food,
breaking down food, moving materials
into and out of the cell, growing, and
building new cells.
All living things grow and
• Single celled organismsthe cell gets bigger and
divides making other
• Mulitcellular organismsthe number of cells
increase causing the
organism to get bigger.