Objective: The children will explore different animal skin coverings and compare them to their own skin.
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Animal skins have changed over time, as animals have adapted to their environments. Most mammals have fur or hair to help keep them warm and protect them from the Sun’s rays. Birds have feathers instead of fur. Feathers are lighter, making it possible for birds to fly. Their feathers also protect them from water and temperature changes. Reptiles have tough skin covered by rigid scales for protection and to prevent dehydration. Their scales are waterproof because they spend much of their lives in the water or in very humid areas.
Animal colors and patterns help them blend in with their surroundings. A tiger’s stripes blend in with golden brown grasses, and the black blends in with the shadows in the grass. Jaguar and cheetah spots blend in with shadows and sunlight reflecting on the foliage around them. Some animals have body coverings that help them hide from predators. Animals like zebras have stripes that blend together, disrupting their individual outlines. This confuses predators when the animals stand in groups. Solid-colored animals blend in to their environments—such as the polar bear or arctic fox, both of whom live in snow-covered lands.
These lessons are aligned with the Common Core State Standards ("CCSS"). The CCSS provide a consistent, clear understanding of the concepts and skills children are expected to learn and guide teachers to provide their students with opportunities to gain these important skills and foundational knowledge.
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There are currently no Common Core Standards for pre-k, but these lessons are aligned as closely as possible to capture the requirements and meet the goals of Common Core Standards. However, these lessons were neither reviewed or approved by the National Governors Association Center for Best Practices or the Council of Chief State School Officers, which together are the owners and developers of the Common Core State Standards.