May 1, 2010

Arctic Lapbooks Part 1 of 3

As we have been trotting the globe looking at the various biomes this biome has by far been the most facinating to myself and the kids. Perhaps it is because we knew so little about it, perhaps it is because the resources for this topic are so proliferous.  I found so much material to use I simply had to organize it into three different phases or lapbooks. First we looked at the animals of the Arctic, then soon we will look at the Antarctic which is more having to do with scientists and penguins. And since the penguin topic is soooo vast it has a lapbook all to itself. This blog is about phase one: The animals of the Arctic.
 This little Teacher's guide about Arctic Animals I found at the Sea World website. It is part of the Polar Animals  free lapbook from homeschool share. The teacher's guide is filled with experiements and activities and facts about the Polar animals and their region. The first thing I did was to make three sets of the Arctic animal fact cards found in the teachers guide. There are 12 animals in all.
First thing we did was to use two sets of cards to play a game of concentration and learn the names of the animals. Then the following day, with two sets again we played "go fish". Then, the next day I adapted one of the activities in the teacher's guide to play this little game with the cards. The original game was a relay race where by the children race to get dressed up in arctic explorer geer. Instead, I hid three sets of the animal card outside in the yard.
Then I introduced the idea of getting ready for a trip to the Arctic to look for animal sepcimens to observe. What clothes should we wear? What things should we take with us? (there was a great list in the teacher guide to help) So we gathered up our geer, Flash light, extra batterries, first aide kit, etc and got dressed and went to capture 12 animal specimens to observe. They had a blast!
The last activity we did with the cards was a flash light search game. I closed off all the windows and doors so the house was very dark....then hid the animals. I gave the boys flashlights and they hunted for animals one at a time. We did this to see what it might be like to live in a place where it is dark day and night during the winter. Then the animals went into a pocket in our lap books.
The cover map is from Old Style Maps

The lapbook animal booklets all came from the polar animal lapbook from homeschool share. We spent one day decorating the cover, another day organizing and putting the animal books in place, and another day playing who is this with facts about each animal. They glued the facts into their small books.
Another activity in the Sea World Teacher's guide on Arctic animals is to make a polar "cap". They provided a very clear map of the North Pole region and spaces on the map to write in the names of the 7 countries which lie inside the arctic circle. We pasted in the country names and then cut out the arctic circle, glued it onto a paper plate and tied the plate to our heads. Thus we had a "polar cap" There is a little song and role play to go with it which the twins really enjoyed and begged to do again and again. I wrote the song on the under side of the cap.

We did two other activities from the Arctic animals teacher's guide; we grew beans in the fridge at 50F and some beans in a plastic bag at room temperature around 80F and took guesses which beans would sprot first. The warm ones did and this gave us an idea just how slow things grow there becuase of the cold and lack of light.

Lastly we made a food web of who eats who using again the animals from above.

There are more activities we never got to and plenty of fun to be had if time would permit..... But we are ready to move on down south to the Antarctic and see what fun we can have there. Before we go here are the three books we used to fill in the facts and learn about what life is like up north in the Arctic Circle.

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