Fascinated with animals, our young scientists have been exploring this diverse world of captivating animals. Throughout the unit, they have been asking, pondering, and answering questions.
In what ways can animals be grouped?
How can we sort animals?
How can we classify vertebrates?
How can we classify invertebrates?
How do animals adapt to survive?
How does an animal's body coloring help it survive?
How do animals in Florida's Everglades National Park respond to changing seasons?
Some animals, for example, have protective adaptations like camouflage, armor, mimicry, and poison, while others have behavioral adaptations like the instinct to migrate and hibernate to survive the winter. In addition, animals have physical adaptations that help them survive. Birds, for example, depending on the food they eat, have different kinds of beaks. Cardinals have short, strong bills to pick up and crush seeds. The pelican, on the other hand, has a long, pouched bill that helps it swoop down and pick up fish.
From the very first introduction of this unit, our students took a special interest. To promote this enthusiasm, we designed an independent study for students so they could explore an animal and a project of their choice. We created a menu of options, stocked the classroom with reference materials and texts for research, and gave them a rubric to guide their exploration. Each day, the students come to the classroom excited to get to work and they have been self-directed in their learning. Stay tuned. We can't wait to share some of their polished products with you when they are finished.