One of my struggles in kindergarten was always meeting the research standards. Research? Kindergarten? Oh sure, turn them loose on Google and they can learn all about polar bears. Nothing bad could come of that, right?! hehe That’s how I started creating our research projects. I wanted something kid friendly and teacher friendly but something that also was fun, engaging and challenging. And met the standards. This post is going to show you some highlights of our Arctic Animals Research project!
In our class we studied four different animals: walruses, arctic foxes, polar bears and snowy owls. We do penguins as a separate unit. To research each of the arctic animals, we read a book about the animal and watch a Youtube video. We record our learning on our tree maps. The students then write about the animal in their research journal. The research journals are differentiated. One set of pages has a sentence frame and the other set does not. There is also a blank writing page for each animal.
This whole group approach to research makes research and writing in kindergarten easy and manageable and very effective. My students were arctic animal experts at the end of our arctic animals research project.
But we’re not done yet. It’s not just about research and writing…it’s also about FUN and art! So for each of the arctic animals we study, we do an art project!
The artic fox is a paper plate and white tissue paper squares. The plate is cut in half. One half of the plate is the body. The other half is used to make the head, legs and tail.
The polar bear was a simple directed drawing!
The snowy owl is a torn paper project. We first put the brown branch on the paper. Then we used a white crayon to draw our owl. We filled in the snowy owl with torn white construction paper. We added eyes, ears and a beak.
The walrus turned into a math lesson and art project. We made the walrus using construction paper. Then we fed the walrus some fish. The students glued some fish onto the paper and we practiced subtraction by “feeding” the walrus some fish! Math and art and science and research and writing OH MY! See how we learned all about walruses and did art and had fun?!
Of course, if you’re learning about walruses…..then you must become the walrus.
Arctic Animals Science
The students also got to experience what it’s like to live in the arctic and have blubber! We dipped our hands in ice water and talked about how it felt. Then we learned that blubber is a layer of fat that keeps arctic animals warm. So we put our hands into a bag of Crisco (blubber) and then placed our hands in the ice water. We talked about how it was warmer with blubber!
Arctic Animals Snack
And of course we had an arctic animal snack! Polar bear ice cream! Vanilla ice cream cup, vanilla wafer cookies and chocolate chips!
The arctic animals also made their way into our math and literacy centers!
Books for Arctic Animals:
YouTube Videos For Arctic Animals:
For more arctic animal videos, check out this post from Gift Of Curiosity.
My arctic animals research project contains you need to research 8 different arctic animals. Included are: arctic fox, polar bear, walrus, snowy owl, narwhals, seal, moose and arctic hare. Included for each animal are thinking maps, writing pages, labeling, KWL and schema charts. Also included are math and literacy centers!
To see our Penguin unit, check out this blog post:
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