Grade Levels: K-3

These classroom activities are designed to complement the Mammals topic on BrainPOP Jr.

How My Garden Grows

If possible, grow flowers, vegetables, or other plants with your child. If growing a garden isn’t possible, you can create an outdoor window box by cutting up milk cartons or jugs. Have your child observe the plants as they grow and learn which insects are harmful and beneficial to the plant. For example, aphids might hurt the plant’s leaves, but ladybugs will eat aphids and control the aphid population to help keep the plant healthy. Research other plants that lure beneficial insects to your home garden. If possible, grow the plants in your garden or window box. How might farmers use insects to keep their crops healthy? Discuss with your child.

Extreme Insects

Remind your child that insects are found on every continent. As cold-blooded animals, insects have special ways to control their body temperatures. How does an insect survive the snowy Arctic winters? Have your child predict how an insect might survive extreme weather. Research insects that live in extreme climates, such as hot, arid deserts and the freezing tundra. What adaptations do the insects have? Your child can create insect cards and draw pictures and write facts about each specimen.

Mammal Make-A-Map Brainstorm

Before watching the Mammal movie, prompt students to brainstorm what they know about mammals. Open the Make-a-Map feature from the Mammals topic page and select the spider map template. Add students’ ideas to the map and get them thinking about the topic. Then watch the movie within Make-a-Map, pausing as facts are presented. Add any new information to your map.

Mammal Fact Cards

Brainstorm different mammals with students, making sure to include some unusual species. Then write the the mammals on scraps of paper and put them in a hat. Have pairs draw a mammal and conduct research on its habitat, appearance, adaptations, and its predators. Using their research, have them create fact cards about their mammal. They may want to draw a picture or find photographs to include on their cards. Pairs can present their fact cards to the class. Then have pairs compare and contrast their mammals with another mammal by using a Venn diagram.

Adaptation Identification

Write different animal adaptations on a small pieces of paper and place them in a hat. The adaptations might be camouflage, long tusks, sharp claws, long tails, migration, hibernation, etc. Have students pick an adaptation and identify an animal that utilizes it. How does this adaptation help the animal survive? How does this adaptation help the animal thrive in its environment?


Filed as:  Animals, K-3, Mammals, Science