Lesson plan

Hidden Animals

It's time to make—and hide—animals! In this lesson, students read a story about camouflage and then create their own animals to hide. Finally, students write an informational paragraph to describe their animals' hiding powers.
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  • Students will be able to write an informational paragraph to describe how an animal uses camouflage.
  • Students will be able to name a topic, supply some facts about it, and provide a sense of closure.
(5 minutes)
  • Have students raise their hand if they've ever played hide and seek. Ask students to share what makes a good hiding place.
  • Tell students that animals hide, too. They often do so to stay out of harm from predators. When animals hide by blending in with the environment around them, this is called camouflage.
(20 minutes)
  • Read aloud Animal Camouflage by Vicky Franchino.
  • Have students turn to a partner and share their favorite animal in the book, prompting them to say why they liked that animal the best.
  • Pick one of the animals from the book and ask students to describe how it uses camouflage to stay safe.
(10 minutes)
  • Tell students that they will be creating their own animals and habitats for them to camouflage into.
  • Explain that a habitat is the natural home or environment where an animal lives.
  • Show students the construction paper. Explain that they will use a big piece of paper for the background. Show students how to tear small pieces of colored paper off and glue or tape them to the bigger paper to create a habitat.
  • Now tell students that you are going to create an animal to camoflauge into the habitat. This can be an actual animal or a fictional animal that you create.
  • When your animal is complete, project the Informational Writing worksheet on the whiteboard.
  • Explain to the students that now you are going to write about your chosen animal. Tell the students that you will start by introducing your topic. Next, you will write three facts about your topic. Finally, you will provide a sense of closure to wrap up your writing.
  • Write the following guiding questions on the whiteboard:
    • What animal are you writing about?
    • How does your animal camouflage?
    • What are something other interesting facts about your animal?
  • Model writing the informative paragraph. Highlight the topic sentence, facts, and closure in different colors to support student understanding.
(15 minutes)
  • Pass out the Informational Writing worksheet to each student.
  • Have students create their own habitats and animals.
  • Then have students write informational paragraphs using the Informational Writing worksheet to describe how their animals camouflage, and teach others a little bit about their chosen animal.

Support: Provide sentence stems for students to fill in when writing their paragraphs.

Enrichment: Have students write a longer informational piece about their animals.

(5 minutes)
  • Assess how students are using their knowledge of camouflage to create animals and habitats.
  • Rotate around the room and support students who need help including a topic sentence, information about how their animal is able to camouflage, and closure that wraps up their writing.
(5 minutes)
  • Call on students to share their animals and habitats. Ask others to notice how the animals are camouflaged. Chart the similarities and differences between animals on the whiteboard.
  • Encourage students to share interesting facts they learned about their classmate's animals.
  • Close by asking students which animals they would like to learn more about!

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