Our Classroom's a Zoo!

We have had so much fun the past two weeks studying about animals.  We worked on sorting animals by their physical characteristics. (color, size, body covering, limbs, and how they move)
Earlier this year, I came across this awesome blog post and I just couldn't wait until we could do this project in our classroom.  Thank you to Kindergarten Kindergarten for the amazing lesson ideas! 

We started our project by looking at animals and sorting picture cards by the animals' physical characteristics.  Each day, the kids worked in groups to sort the picture cards any way they decided.  Then I had them sort the animals by one of the specific characteristics I wanted us to cover.  

Next we made an anchor chart for the characteristic we covered that day.  

The students then chose an animal to put in their Science Journals and used the anchor charts to write a sentence or two about the animal. 

After practicing sorting the animals by the five different characteristics, it was time to start working on our zoo!  
The kids brought in stuffed or plastic animals from home, and then our next step was to create the signs for our animals.  Using our anchor charts, we wrote one sentence about each characteristic for our animals.  (ex. A sheep is white.  A sheep has four legs.  A sheep can walk. etc.)
They also had plenty of time to look through nonfiction animal books to discover even more about their animals.

After the signs were completed, it was time for the really fun part.  Decorating the zoo!  I let the kids take full control of this part.  They basically told me which color of paper they needed and then got to work.  I was so impressed with their writing and decorating skills!
On Friday, we invited the parents and other teachers and staff on campus to come visit our zoo and see what we had been learning.

Ms. Hunter's class held their zoo on the same day as ours, so we set up an admissions table in the hall.  We let the students take turns greeting guests and passing out animal crackers

 This was such a fun project for the kids and myself!  The best part was watching the kids work together to create the zoo, and hearing their conversations as they made decisions.  

Thanks again Kindergarten Kindergarten for the awesome idea!
(The animal picture cards, along with Animal Colors and Animal Body Covering Powerpoints all came from www.Kindergartenkindergarten.com.)

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