Ready-To-Use Teaching Idea: Science
- markers, crayons, and pencils
- stapler or hole punch, binder rings or yarn
- variety of nonfiction, informational books to support the animal study
- chart paper
- drawing paper
Objective: Children will work together to choose aspects of animals' bodies to study in order to learn about how and why animals are able to survive.
- Explain to children that they will work together to learn about how different animals' bodies enable them to survive. Create a graph listing different types of animal groupings such as mammals, reptiles, amphibians, insects, birds, and sea life. Review the characteristics of each group. Invite children to create lists of different types of animals for each. Use nonfiction books to extend the children's knowledge about different types of animal life.
- Ask children to choose one animal from each group to focus on for their animal study. Encourage them to choose animals that look very different from one another. Create a chart listing the animals that they will be studying. Place a photograph next to every animal listed on the chart. Create lists for each animal describing its body parts (small ears, long tongue, short legs, and so on). Visit the school or local library, collect nature magazines, and use Internet resources to assist the children in gathering information. Invite animal experts to your classroom. Plan field trips to a local zoo, farm, aquarium, or pet store.
- Read books with children during group time and engage them in discussions about specific animal's bodies. Ask questions such as "How does the size of an animal's legs enable it to survive?" or "How does the size of an animal's ears, eyes, or nose affect its senses?" Encourage children to develop their own questions and to think about other things that they would like to learn about animals.
- Provide children with opportunities to draw and write about the different animals to support their learning experiences. Engage them in book-making and art activities such as murals, dioramas, puppet making, and sculptures. Include children's observations and summaries about their animal study. Create a display documenting the animal study that includes children's charts, drawings, books, and so on.
Language/Dramatic Play: Animal Riddles and Pantomines. I live in South America. I am very funny looking. I have a very long nose. I eat ants. What am I? During group time, ask children to create riddles about animals for their classmates to solve. Children can also create a class animal riddle book. They can write the riddle on one side of the page and draw a picture of the animal on the reverse side. Children can also create pantomines about diffenert animals.
The Beak Book by Pamela Chanko
Our Amazing Animal Friends by Gene S. Stuart
Snakes and Lizards by Daniel Moreton and Pamela Chanko