Fingers crossed this week my kids are going to the zoo, I hope. After most zoo trips we spend some time reviewing all we know about the animals we saw and talking about the zoo animals.
Tigers are a great place to start because you can emulate a tiger hunting in the jungle with only a couple of blind folds and an open room. My kids loved this activity, and we played it several times over the course of a few days.
Then look at another big cat, the cougar and learn about how cougars hunt in this unique game.
After you’ve explored big cats, start looking at elephants. First measure how tall they are in comparison to you. That can be a great comparison. Then try to use an elephant trunk.
From the elephants head over and check out the marsupials. Make a kangaroo pouch and how to hop like a kangaroo, then figure out how far does a kangaroo jump as you study these fun animals.
Then look at the ungulates, giraffes, horses, gazelles, and how are ungulates classified.
After the giraffes and sitting still for a minute you might want to move around and try to move like a primate.
A few of the zoos we went to had a small beaver colony, and I have to say these hard working animals are fun to watch, and even more fun to imitate as you build a beaver dam if you have a good supply of pillows and blankets.
We usually will head over to the bears and watch them for a few minutes, one of our favorite zoos was in Arizona called “Bearizona,” and we learned some great bear safety tips and made a fun bear cave craft.
Finally, I’d sum up your zoo animal lesson with a look at animal teeth. Almost all of the animals at the zoo have teeth, and it’s fun to predict what they eat based off of their teeth.
For all of the posts in this series head on over to Zoology for Kids.
For a great series of posts written by some other awesome homeschooling Moms (including about 3 more series on science) head on over to Summer Hopscotch 2014
Natalie PlanetSmartyPants says
It’s timely – we plan to go to the zoo as well this coming weekend. My 7 year old has a lot of facts about animals, but she doesn’t really care about getting all the facts – she just likes to watch animal antics when she goes to the zoo. Great activities to make zoology hands on!
Susan Evans says
My kids love animals, and it’s a shame that we don’t have a proper zoo in our city. All we have is a large cat zoo, which is good, but there isn’t all the variety of animals you get in a normal zoo.
Marie-Claude Leroux says
Great idea for a series! This is such a fun roundup for extending learning at a zoo, looking forward to the reptiles 🙂
maryanne @ mama smiles says
Animal teeth are very fascinating!
You know when you’re a home schooler……..when every outing becomes an opportunity to learn! Love it, Ticia!!
Michelle Cannon says
I don’t think my kids – at least not the younger two – have ever been to a zoo. Weird, huh? Do wildlife reservations count? We totally do that. 😀