LEARN: Animals of the World — Oskar's Wooden Ark Skip to content
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Learning Activity: Animals of the World

An #Oskarslittlelearners Activity Tutorial by Kate Kwijas, for Oskar's Wooden Ark

June 16, 2021

This activity is designed to spark an interest in Geography and the animals of the world. Print out our free World Map template, gather together your favourite animal figurines and explore where in the world different animals live.

If you do this fun activity with your little learners, please take a photo and share it with us on Instagram and Facebook, tagging @oskarswoodenark and using the hashtag: #oskarslittlelearners. We'd love to see what you get up to!

Preparation

Preparation:

1. You will need a selection of animal toys or figurines. If you don't have any animal figurines, you could cut out pictures of animals from a magazine or find images online.

2. Gather together one or two books or resources that will help your little ones learn about different animals and their habitats.

3. Print out a copy of the world map (a template is included).  I took my file to Officeworks and had it printed in A0 size. For older children you could use a world map with each country’s boundary marked in. However, the outline is visually simple for young children.

Free World Map Poster

Instructions:

1. Read a book about animals in the world. We used Sounds of Nature - World of Forests. I love this book as it adds a sensory element to the activity by utilising the sound feature of the book. However, there are so many books you could use; most atlases aimed at children touch on the animals found in each area. 

Read a book about animals
Colour in the different areas of the world map

2. Colour in the different areas of the world map with your children. We used Stockmar Wax Crayons.

3. Revisit the pages of the book with your children.

"What animals live here? Do we have figurines of these animals? Where do they live on the map?"

Place the animals in the appropriate area of your world map. 

What animals live here?
Ideas for extension

Ideas for extension:

You might like to:
- Identify and discuss simple compass directions (North, South, East and West)
- Use simple directional language for young children (left, right, up, down, beside, below)

For older children (and where there is interest), you could extend your learners by providing support and resources to investigate an animal of their choice. This could take the form of finding and watching appropriate documentaries, reading further books about a particular animal, using your figurines to set up a small world invitation to play (you might even do this together; what would this animals habitat look like?), creating a diorama, story, poster, stop motion animation...
The possibilities are endless. 

Ideas for extension
spark an interest in geography and the animals of the world

Benefits and Learning Outcomes:

This activity is designed to spark an interest in geography and the animals of the world. Throughout this activity, learners will:
• Talk about their environment
• Become aware that the world extends beyond their locality
• Use world maps, atlases and globes to identify countries and the animals that live in various locations
• Identify and investigate places/countries
• Ask geographical questions

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