Monday, January 1, 2018


WHAT IF YOU HAD ANIMAL EYES?! (Scholastic, 2017) is
full of animals that are fun to read about.

Plus kids can have fun imagining themselves with those animal eyes. 

But why do these animals have their 
special kind of eyes? 

These activities will let children dig into the "why" of some of these animal adaptations.

Chameleon Eye Spy
For this activity, scatter several objects to find around the classroom. Next, choose two students to team up. Have that pair stand side-by-side. Give each child in the team one empty toilet paper tube. (Or use paper towel tubes for an even bigger challenge.) 

Have the team close their eyes while someone places three colorful objects, such as red apples, somewhere in the classroom. 

Now, have each child use a hand to cover the eye on the side next to their partner. And hold the tube up to their uncovered eye. Only looking through the tubes, each member of the team can look in any direction. However, as soon as one team member spots an object that person must guide their partner to home in on the object. And together they must point out the object.

Then repeat to find the other object.

Let other teams try the challenge. Discuss how having eyes that can look in more than one direction is a useful adaptation. And why it's key that both eyes can also focus in the same direction. 

Also share that chameleon bodies (feet and tail) are designed for getting a grip on their habitat and hanging on tight. Why might chameleons have different eyes if they could move their bodies quickly?   

Bullfrog Eye Spy

Often, there's so many interesting facts it's tough to choose just what to share in the "What If You Had?!" info-burst. That was true for the Bullfrog. So here are some cool facts I didn't share:

*It's a good thing a bullfrog can see nearly all the way around itself because, unlike people, it can't turn its eyes in its head. 

*Bullfrogs are nearsighted.

*Their eyes are extremely sensitive to movement. However, if prey, such as flies, don't move, a bullfrog doesn't see it.

Now, follow the directions on one the following resource sites to make periscopes. Then let children experience peeking over things to spy like a bullfrog. 

Have children write a short story or poem about being a frog hiding underwater while watching their world.

Making A Cardboard Periscope 1  

Making A Cardboard Periscope 2


Once your class has read all the What If You Had?! books, have them create a picture of themselves with all the animal adaptations they wish they had.

Don't miss these teacher-shared animal adaptation activities.

The Science Penguin
I especially liked the "Turtle Adaptations" observing and comparing (through pictures and web searching) a land turtle and an aquatic turtle.  

Camel Adaptation Song byAmihan
This is a fabulously fun video and song sharing how a camel is perfectly adapted to its habitat. I dare you to watch it without singing along! SMILE!

Elementary Shenanigans
Check out the "Give Me A Beak" activity. This creative, hands-on learning experience lets children experience how different kinds of birds are adapted for what they eat. Of course, it's also a natural for making the point that by picking different foods off a habitat's menu lets birds share an ecosystem.

Classroom Blog
I love all the animal adaptation activities shared on this blog!

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