Real or Not?

Look at the differences between real and pretend animal behavior.



Real or Not?

What you need:

  • construction paper 
  • yarn 
  • hole punch 
  • crayons and/or markers 
  • picture books with animals (fiction and nonfiction) 

What to do:

  1. To prepare for this activity, use construction paper to make a book. Punch holes along one side and use yarn to make a binding.
  2. Next, gather picture books that feature animals. These books can be a mixture of fictional stories (such as Dear Mrs. LaRue or The Three Little Pigs) and nonfiction (such as a book about farm animals). In Dear Mrs. LaRue by Mark Teague, a dog named Ike does some things that a real dog would do (howling). He does other things a dog would not do (write letters). Look through the books and invite your child to point out what things are real and what are pretend (or "silly").
  3. Now your child can make his own book. Make up a story about an animal. In the story, the animal can do some things a real animal would do, and some things a real animal would not do. 
  4. In the book, draw pictures of the animal doing different activities. Some of these activities can be real and others can be pretend.
  5. Write captions beneath the pictures — your child can dictate them or help you with the writing.
  6. Later, encourage your child to "read" the story to a friend or family member. Can he point out which actions are real and which are pretend?
Science & Nature Activities
Age 5
Age 4
Age 3
Early Reading
Arts and Crafts
Animal Behavior and Structure