A Breastfeeding Education Activity Package for Grades K-12

OBJECTIVES FOR LEVEL K

Students will understand that animals have offspring of like kind, and care for them in special ways.

Using CATS HAVE KITTENS

This unit introduces children to the concept that adult animals have baby animals of the same kind. As students begin to identify animals and their offspring, they will see that animals and humans produce babies that look the same/similar and have the same/similar characteristics as the adult. This unit also begins to identify the special ways the mother animal is prepared to care for the newborn animal.

In Lessons 1-2, students hear the story of a baby animal (bird) who is trying to find his mother. Lessons 3-4 has students identify and match adult animals with their babies. Lessons 5-6 introduces students to the special ways animals are prepared to care for their young.

Resources for CATS HAVE KITTENS

  • "Are You My Mother?" by P.D. Eastman. (New York: Beginner Books, Inc. 1960).
  • "Is Your Mama A Llama?" by Deborah Gauarino. (New York: Scholastic, Inc. 1989).
  • "How Animals Care For Their Babies" by Roger B. Hirschland. (Washington, D.C.: National Geographic Society, 1987).
  • "The Love Of Baby Animals" by Robert Burton. (New York: Crescent Books, 1976).
  • "Baby Birds And How They Grow" by Jane R. McCauley. (Washington, D.C.: National Geographic Society, 1983).
  • "Our Animal Friends at Maple Hill Farm" by Martin and Alice Provensen. (New York: Random House, 1974).

Movies/Videos

  • "Animal Babies Grow Up", Coronet, 1983, (10 minutes).
  • "Zoo Babies", Coronet, 1978, (8 minutes).
  • "Animals Are Different & Alike", Coronet, 1990, (13 minutes).
  • "Animal Babies", National Geographic, 1981, (15 minutes).
  • "Animal Babies", EBE, 1983, (10 minutes).

Understanding:

Animals have baby animals of the same kind, and have special ways they are prepared to care for them.

Before You Start:

Kindergartners can understand that humans have human babies and animals have animal babies. They may, however, question whether animals (or humans) can have animals of another kind. This section of Cats Have Kittens will help students identify adult animals with their young. By doing this, students will begin to understand that animals only have young of the same kind - cats only have kittens. This section also begins to help students identify some of the unique ways the adult animal is prepared to care for its newborn, i.e., protecting it, cleaning it, nursing it. This will also be discussed at length in a later section.

LESSONS SUBJECTS
1-2. Who's My Mother? Language Arts, Science, Family Life
3-4. Two Of A Kind Science, Language Arts, Music, Family Life, Art
5-7. Baby Of Mine Language Arts, Art, Math, Family Life, Science, Physical Education

Baby animals look similar to, and have many of the same characteristics as their parents.

Lesson 1-2 Language Arts, Science, Family Life

WHO'S MY MOTHER?

Vocabulary:

  • Similar: the same as.
  • Different: something that is not the same as something else.

Advance Preparation:

  • Borrow "Are You My Mother" or similar story from the library.
  • Bring in pictures of adult and baby animals (from books, see resource list, or magazines.) Photpcopy "Animal Shadows" (worksheet - 1A) for each student.

Activities: Lesson 1

Have students sit comfortably in a circle where all can see. Read the book "Are You My Mother?" by P.D. Eastman (or similar story) to the class and discuss the following:

  1. What was the story about?
  2. Who did the little bird talk to? (kitten, cow, airplane, etc.)
  3. Which of the things he talked to were animals? (kitten, cow, hen, dog)
  4. Which were not? (car, boat, airplane, steam shovel)
  5. How could you tell the big bird was the little bird's mother? (looked alike, others were not birds)
  6. Do all babies look like their mothers? (most do but not caterpillars, tadpoles)
  7. How did the steam shovel (the "snort") help the baby bird?
  8. What might have happened if the baby bird thought one of the other animals was its mother?

Lesson 2

  • Using "How Animals Care For Their Babies" or similar book of baby and adult animals, discuss with students the similarities and differences in the animals (baby to adult).
  • Bring in a baby animal with its parent (gerbils, mice, kittens, fish, etc.). Have students study the adult and baby together. Discuss things that are similar as well as the differences between the two; e.g., size, color, etc.
  • Have students draw and color their own make believe animal and baby. Give it a name and tell a little about it - where does it live, what does it eat, etc. (This can be done as an individual or small group activity).

Evaluation:

Using attached worksheet 1A- "Animal Shadows", have students match the adult to the baby animal, by connecting a line between them. See if they can guess the animal by looking at the shadow.

Lesson 3 & 4 Science, Family Life, Language Arts, Music, Art, Physical Education

Although they often have different names, adult animals have baby animals of the same kind.

Vocabulary:

  • Offspring: refers to the babies of humans and animals.

Advance Preparation:

  • Bring in pictures of adult and baby animals that can be cut out. These can be found in magazines such as National Geographic, Ranger Rick, Scholastic or in coloring books. Photocopy Worksheet 2A - "Animal Babies" for each student.

Activities: Lesson 3

  • Review with students the names of familiar animals: Dog, Cow, Horse, Sheep.
  • Discuss: Many animal babies have special names that are different from the adult name.
  • Brainstorm: Have students name any animal "babies" they can think of. See if they (or with help from the class) can identify the "adult" name for the animal as well.
    Example:
    • Dog - Puppy
    • Goat - Kid
    • Cat - Kitten
    • Horse - Foal
    • Cow - Calf
    • Sheep - Lamb
  • Also, try to include less common animals babies such as:
    • Kangaroo - Joey
    • Lion - Cub
    • Seal - Pup
    • Sheep - Lamb
    • Deer - Fawn
    • Whale - Calf
  • Have students recite "Who Am I?" riddles to connect names of adult and baby animals.

    One student is chosen as the animal. That student is given a picture of the animal to study. Then try to get the class, or small group to tell what kind of animal they are.

    Example: "I am a big animal with lots of fur. Sometimes I am brown or black, or even white, I like to fish in the river for food. My babies are called "cubs". Who Am I?" (bear).

Lesson 4

  • Using Worksheet 2A - "Animal Babies", instruct students to circle the baby of the animal in the left column. When reviewing answers, remember to use correct "baby name".
  • Have students color and cut out pictures of adult and baby animals. Paste each "pair" on a piece of colored construction paper. Make a baby animal mobile by hanging the paper on varying length string from hanger or ceiling.

    Keep in mind some animals may have more than one baby shown. You may also wish to write the names for each animal pair pictured. (example - Horse - Colt)

  • Make an "Animal Match" game for your classroom, by pasting pictures of adult animals on index cards. Turn cards over so they are lying face down. Students (alone, or in pairs) take turns flipping cards two at a time. If the cards match (baby to adult) they get to keep the set, if they do not, they must turn them face down again. Winner collects the most "sets".
  • Sing Baby Animals to the tune of Farmer In The Dell.
    • Ba - by An - i - mals
    • Ba - by An - i - mals
  • Students may "play out" Baby Animals as they would Farmer In The Dell, by splitting the group into two circles, outer circle being the adult animals and inner circle the babies. Children in the outer circle should each be given an animal name, and as their animal name is called (dog, horse, sheep, etc.), they should select a child from the inner circle to be their puppy, colt, lamb, etc. The game and song continue until all animals have been paired up.

Animal Babies Worksheet 2A

Most newborn animals, including humans, need to be cared for.

Lesson 5, 6 & 7 Art, Language Arts, Family Life, Math, Science

BABY OF MINE

Vocabulary:

  • Protect: to keep safe from harm.

Advance Preparation:

  • Photocopy "Caring for Babies" Worksheets Kangaroo - 3A and Koala Bear - 3B.
  • Borrow "How Animals Care For Their Babies" by Roger B. Hirschland from the library.
  • Make plans for a field trip to a zoo or a farm. Inquire about planning the trip soon after an animal is born.

Activities: Lesson 5

Read the book "How Animals Care For Their Babies" out loud to the class. Take time to pause on each page to discuss each picture. Have students name animals and babies when possible. Discuss the following with the class.

  1. What are some way animals care for their newborn babies? (protect them, clean them, nurse them, move them, etc.)

    When students have answered, ask them for an example of an animal that does each:

    • protects - woodpecker, by building a nest inside a tree
    • cleans - lion, by licking coat of her cub
    • nurses - baboon, moose by feeding baby with milk from her body
    • moves them - elk, nudging along; wolf spider, riding on back
  2. Ask students to think about the ways a human cares for a newborn baby. Brainstorm and compare animal vs. human,e.g.:
    • protects - covers with blanket, clothing
    • cleans - bathes baby
    • nurses - feeds with milk from breasts
    • moves - carries in arms or stroller
  3. Why is it so important for many baby animals to be protected, cleaned, fed, etc. (because they cannot do it themselves).
    • Pass out worksheets Kangaroo - 3A & Koala Bear - 3B to students. Instruct students to find and color the baby animal on each sheet. What special way does the adult kangaroo/koala help care for its baby (joey, cub).

Lesson 6

  • Take a field trip to a zoo or farm. Inquire in advance to plan a trip soon after a baby animal has been born. Have students generate questions to ask the farmer or zoo keeper. Also, allow students the opportunity to make predictions about what they will see:
    • - Where do you think the new calf will be - far away or close to its mom?
    • - How many piglets do you think the pig has?
    • - Write down answers and discuss upon return.

Lesson 7

  • Invite a guest speaker such as a veterinarian, zookeeper, pet shop owner or farmer into the classroom to discuss the ways animals care for their young.
  • Watch a video or film such as "Animal Babies Grow Up", "Zoo Babies" or others that shows baby animals being cared for.
  • Using Worksheet 3C - "How Many Babies" have students count the number of babies each animal has and fill in the blank.

Evaluation:

Have each student share something they learned about animals and their babies.