Can Penguins Live in Hot Places? - Spring 1In this section...
During the Topic 'Why do I celebrate Christmas?' the children loved learning about snow. It started to get much colder outside, snow fell, Jack Frost came and the Reception Garden turned to ice. It looked like Elsa and Ana had been to play. The children were keen to learn more about the North Pole and the animals that live there. We noticed that photographs of the North Pole didn't show any penguins. We decided to investigate...
We (the children) are learning to:
Look closely at the natural world; discuss what we can see, talk about changes that take place over time, give reasons for why the changes happen and to write facts about what we can see.
We asked the question 'Can a Penguin Live in a Hot Place?'
Most children thought that penguins can only live in a cold places. The children explained their thoughts: (Adam) "They might die in a hot place." (Toby) "They are only OK in the cold sun." (Alex) "Their feet might get burned in a hot place." (Isabella) "They might live in the North Pole or South Pole." (Anya) "They are cold animals, they will burn down (in a hot place)." We decided to learn about animals in hot and cold places to find out more.
We went on an Arctic walk to use our senses to explore cold places. We saw snowy owls, arctic gulls and polar bears. We had to growl loudly at the polar bears to scare them away. We used special explorer tools to climb mountains and ice-bergs and to build igloos. We ate energy bars and drank hot chocolate to give us energy. We measured how thick the ice was and talked about the weather. There were no shops or supermarkets or toys to play with but it was so much fun to be explorers. When we got back to class we made a record of our findings. We learnt that explorers investigate far away places to learn about them.
We used information books and the computer to find out more about the geography of the Arctic and Antarctica and the animals that live there. We noticed that penguins do live in Antarctica (South Pole).
We made our role-play areas into Arctic lands and pretended to be explorers. We talked about what explorers need and made lists of equipment to make sure that we could explore safely. The children decided that explorers need...
To find out more about animals we wanted to make fact books. We read the story 'Polar Bear, Polar Bear What Can you Hear?' and changed it to 'Explorer, Explorer, What Can You see?' We had lots of fun being explorers and learning about animals to write facts about them.
We watched clips about Polar Bears and observed them closely. We talked about their colours. They are cream, brown, white and yellow. We felt the fur of toy polar bears and thought that they were soft, warm, cuddly and furry. We moved like polar bears and thought about words we could use to describe their movements.
Watch the clip at home, talk about it together. What do you notice?
Look at our work!
Now we can look closely at the natural world; discuss what we see, talk about changes that take place over time, give reasons for why changes happen (like ice melting) and write facts about what we can see.
We learnt that penguins do live in cold places. Do they live in hot places? We decided to investigate further.
Whilst we compare and contrast hot and cold places we will also learn to:
Look carefully at the natural world and use our observations as a stimulus for art, design and music. We will learn to combine materials and use tools carefully. We will explore instruments, changing their sounds to make sound effects.
In our search for penguins in hot places we learnt about animals that live in the African Savannah and the jungle.
We listened to the story of ‘The Animal Boogie’. We listened carefully to the music and joined in with actions as we sang the song.
We had so much fun moving like the animals in the story. They all moved in different ways. Bear was shaking; the monkey was swinging, the bird was flapping, the elephant was stomping, the leopard was leaping and the snake was slithering.
Then we took part in an Animal Boogie concert. We loved performing to an audience, playing the instruments carefully and with control.
We looked carefully at the animal patterns and made pictures of them. We described the patterns. (Adam) "My pattern is a zebra pattern. It goes black, white, black, white, black, white." (Finlay) "My pattern is the Tiger. A tiger is really scary and fierce. The pattern is orange, black, orange, black, orange, black." (Albie) "I am making the cheetah. He has browny blacky, spots that make that shape." (Albie points to the horseshoe shape pattern.) (Kaida) "I am making a cheetah too. The pattern is orange and black, with circle shapes." (Charlie) "I am doing the zebra, he has really big brown circles on his pattern."
Next we made African Animals. We looked carefully at photographs of animals and decided which shapes were best to use to make the animals out of junk. We choose the best boxes to match the shapes of the animals in the photographs. We selected the resources to stick the boxes together and used tools like glues spreaders, scissors and sellotape to build the model. We even made improvements to our model to make it even better. We asked for help too; if we needed it, especially to have help holding our models whilst we stuck them together.
We also had lots of fun pretending to be explorers in our African Savannah role-play areas. For example, Finley and Lewis enjoyed chatting together as they play and pretend. (Lewis) "I can see a leopard, they leap and they can run really fast." (Finley) "My leopard can run fast too. He eats meat with his teeth. They are sharp!" We had fun in our role-play areas and learnt more about the animals from fact books.
We learnt the story of the 'Tall, Tall, Grass' and we used this story to make our own African Savannah animal stories.
As we looked in fact books we found out about penguin that live in Africa.
Here is an African penguin. Can you and your child find out more about this penguin at home and write some facts. Children don't forget to count the words in the sentence and use the sounds you know to write the words.
Finally, we answered our question, 'Yes! Penguins do live in hot countries!'
Now we can compare and contrast hot and cold places; look carefully at the natural world and use our observations as a stimulus for art, design and music. We can combine materials and use tools carefully. We can explore instruments and change their sounds to make effects.