Friday, March 16, 2012

Cheetahs

One of our plans for homeschooling activities is to pick an animal and study it for a week or so. The kids picked the cheetah for our first full week of homeschooling, and we all (maybe me even more than them!) had so much fun with it! The week before I reserved some materials from the library which we picked up on Monday morning along with some other books about cheetah that we found. All week we read books about cheetahs, did some worksheets, and watched videos. We also went to the Denver zoo to observe a real cheetah (our local zoo is incredible, but no cheetahs...).
Observation
(see the cheetah back there in the grass?)
Working diligently at the zoo
Cheetah Resources we used:

  • Animal Research Notes and miscellaneous children's cheetah books from the library - going forward, I plan to use this for every animal we study
  • Be an Animal Watcher and Take a Closer Look worksheets for our zoo observation - these were really fun for the kids - both the tally marks (which we then turned into a bar graph the next day) and the every 2 minute location observation (despite catching the cheetah at a pretty quiet time...). I also added 2 blank sheets for animal sketches to make a packet for the zoo. We'll use this packet for every observable animal we study
  • Watched the movie Duma (warning: sad parts!!) and the Wild Kratts Cheetah Racers episode. I wanted to watch the movie Cheetah but forgot to put it in my Netflix queue. I also thought we could watch Nature episode Cheetah Orphans on my iPad app, but I was wrong. We'll get both from Netflix eventually.
  • We read aloud the book Our Friend Yambo (mostly... it got a little long for the kids so we skipped some of the boring parts) about a couple in France that adopts a cheetah cub
  • Why the Cheetah's Cheeks Are Stained and Why the Cheetah Runs So Fast - African folktales
  • Meet the Cheetah activity guide (don't I wish I could find this for every animal!!)
  • I also had Kate do this Cheetah misspelled words worksheet (a bit too difficult for Jack)
  • Animal Research Resources - a worksheet that I made for us to keep a bibliography of the books, videos, internet sites we used. To be honest, we only half did it for the cheetah... getting better as we go.
A bit more active cheetah
(we heard him chirp and saw him mark his territory)
We are back to the Denver Zoo today to observe polar bears! Fun, fun, fun...

1 comment:

PopMom said...

I'm not in the least bit surprised that you are doing this full force with lots of energy and great ideas. It's exciting to see you guys make this change and to hear all about it!