Dr. Seuss's book "Is a Camel a Mammal?" helps introduce preschool students to the lives of mammals. In these mammal lesson plans a teacher can connect the book to several crafts and activities while teaching the pre-k students about mammals.
The lesson will start off by reading Dr.Seuss's book Is a Camel a Mammal? Before you begin reading and during ask questions such as :
- What is a mammal?
- What are examples of mammals?
- Has anyone ever seen a mammal up close?
- What is hibernation?
- Which animals do we know hibernate in the winter?
- Are humans mammals?
The children may not fully comprehend of know the answer before reading the book, but they surely will be able to answer them afterward.
So What Defines a Mammal?
Characteristics of mammals:
- Warm blooded
- Have hair
- Mammary glands (feed their young with milk)
- Can regulate their own body temperature (sweat glands)
- Lungs to breathe
- Most of the babies are born alive
Types of Mammals:
Monotremes: These are primitive mammals which lay eggs. Spiny ant-eaters and duck billed platypus are two examples of modern day monotremes.
Marsupials: The young are born during an immature state and most of the mothers have pouches. Examples include koalas and kangaroos.
Placenta Mammals: The young are born at an advanced stage (after pregnancy-compared to humans) the young are nourished inside the womb through the placenta. Examples include cats, dogs, camels and elephants.
Habitat: Deserts, dry area
Two types of camels: One hump (Arabian) and two hump (Bactrian)
The Hump: Contains fat which supplies the camel with nutrition; he does not have to eat for 3 to 4 days at a time.
Diet: Camels are plant eaters or are HERBIVORES. Common food includes plants, oats, dates, and wheat.
Important parts of the body: The leathery pads on knees and chest to protect them from sand; Nostrils open and close and protect them as well from the desert environment; Very bushy eyebrows and two rows of eyelashes which protect the eyes from sand.
Sing : "Sally the Camel"
Lyrics and music found at http://kids.niehs.nih.gov/lyrics/sally.htm.
This class activity can help with counting of numbers, counting backwards, and assessment for identifying different types of camels. (One hump, Two hump).
After speaking to the children about the furry eyebrows and long rows of eyelashes, have the children make their very own camel masks which resemble real camels.
- Paper plates
- Construction paper
- Yarn or pom pom balls
- Pipe Cleaners
- Crayons or markers
- Hole puncher
- Wooden Popsicle sticks
The teacher should show the children pictures of camel faces to help them understand how the face is situated: big rounded nose, large nostrils, eyes with long eyelashes and eyebrows. Allow the preschool students to draw their camel faces onto paper plates. Have the color and prepare the camel faces for the next steps. Where the eyebrows should go have children glue either yarn or pom poms to make them nice and bushy!
The teacher will then use a hole puncher to make holes where the eyelashes should go. Make several holes then help children lace the eyelashes into the holes. Use one pipe cleaner for every two holes. You will bend the pipe cleaner to make a V and insert both sides of pipe cleaner straight through two holes (one side for each hole). Once the pipe cleaner has entered both holes twist the pipe cleaners so that they stay. Twist 3-4 times around each other. Proceed several more time depending on how many holes you have punched. This should be done going from the back to the front (so the twisting will be done on the front). If you punched 10 holes then you will be using 5 pipe cleaners.
You can now cut open holes where the eyes would be so the child can see out of the mask. The last step is to glue a wooden Popsicle stick to the bottom so that the child can hold the mask in front of his face.
This craft will help the children with fine motor skills, and is also a great opportunity to assess the children about the face anatomy of the camel.
- Why do they have bushy eyebrows?
- Why do they have long eyelashes?
- Why do they have large nostrils?
The kangaroo is a marsupial: The baby is born at an immature stage, and stays in it's mother's pouch approximately 8 months.
- The kangaroo gets around by jumping or hopping and can hop up to 40 miles per hour. They can hop up to 30 feet in one jump.
- Common Names: Adult Males are known as jack, boomer or buck; Adult females are known as flyer, roo, doe or jill; Babies are known as joeys.
Habitat: Australia and New Guinea.
Nocturnal: They are awake at night.
Diet: Herbivores: Plant eaters.
Anatomy: Soft fur can be various colors including blue, red, grey or brown. Females have pouches where the baby stays and lives for around 8 months. In the punch the baby lives and drinks milk from the mother.
- Have children line up, and two at a time, try jumping how a kangaroo would jump.
- Set up a piece of colored tape as the starting point. Mark off various measurements from the starting point 1 feet, 2 feet, etc. Allow the children to have a jumping contest to see how far they can jump. Ask them if they could imagine jumping 30 feet like kangaroos?
These activities will help with gross motor skills and allow the children to participate in physical activity.
Making a pouch for crayons, pencils,other school supplies, etc.
- Felt or fabric (various colors and textures)
- Hole puncher
- Paper plate for tracing
Give each child a piece of fabric. Size will depend on what you want the children to use it for. For example, for a crayon pouch the fabric should be 10 inches by 10 inches. Have children turn over the fabric and place paper plate onto underside of fabric. They will now trace the circle. Help the pre K students with cutting out the fabric circle.
Now the teacher will help with punching holes all around the the edge (about inch from edge) of the circle. The students will then take yarn and thread the yarn into the holes. When all the holes are filled or threaded children will pull loosely and tie a know on each end of the yarn. Make sure to leave enough room for slack. Then have children fill up the pouches with crayons and pull even tighter and make a bow.
Go over the why the kangaroo has a pouch. They need a pouch to carry their young. Do humans need pouches to carry their young? How do humans carry their young?
This craft will help with fine motor skills as well as allow the children to work with different colors and textures.
Is A Camel A Mammal? By: Dr. Seuss