Grade 2 - Unit 3 - Look Again
Step by Step Look Again Unit Opener by Sarah Weininger, Saturn St. School
Recording Sheet for Unit Opener by Susan Obuchi
Powerpoint: Look Again Presentation by Isabel M. Lee
Powerpoint: What Is Camouflage by Carol Potter
Powerpoint: What Is Camouflage? from Harding Elementary
Great Books to use for Unit Openers:
Possible Guest Speakers/Field Trips:
A fun activity is to have the kids each cut out two small simple butterflies
A good book to read for this unit is The Trek by Ann Jonas. It is not about camouflage, but rather a girl walking to school and as she does, the city streets become a jungle, then a desert, all the while, she is observing and avoiding all the wild animals posing as trees, chimneys, fences, and even fruit. Basically, it about looking closer at the world around you and seeing things inside other things. I twist it to looking closer to see what is hidden inside or behind other things. The kids like it. So, not a unit opener per say, but a good pre-reading book to introduce the new unit.
I have the students paint a camouflage pattern onto a large piece of construction paper. This could be white paper:black stripes, yellow paper:brown splashes or dashes of yellow or any other combinations that make sense or that they have seen in photos. Make sure that pattern is over the entire paper. After it dries instruct the students to fold in half and cut apart. Save (take) one half for later. Remember to put names on the back because they need to keep their pieces together. Now, without explaining why, help them draw the shape of an animal on the back of one of the halves. The first time you do this I would stick to one shape, say a tiger, so that you don't have 5 different shapes to help with. You can find books that will help you teach them to draw the animal using shapes. Tell them the animal needs to be as big as the 1/2 sheet of paper. Draw on the back, cut out and watch as they begin to realize they are making an animal that they will flip over and see in the pattern they painted. Using black permanent markers draw details; eyes, nose and outline the body and draw anything else that will complete the animal ON THE PAINTED SIDE. This finished animal will then be placed on the other half, pattern on top of pattern. To emphasize this and to make the animal visible you can cover the bottom half or 1/3 of the background page with a corresponding color, then the top half of the body will camouflage while they can see the bottom clearly.
Take patterned gift wrap squares and cover a small bulletin board. Give each student a white piece of paper that has been cut into a bear or butterfly. Have each student color to match the gift wrap. Have them hang it up. Challenge the class to find them.
After discussions on camouflage students are given a button to hide in a picture. The task is to create a picture with construction paper, such as an ocean scene, etc. Within the picture students must camouflage the button for peers to find. The construction paper should be torn not cut to texture the scene. Works great as a bulletin board display.
Every year we have a Camouflage Day where students(and myself included) wear camouflage clothing. For example, a student could wear all white and come as a Snowshoe Hare in the Winter;wear all black and add some whiskers, tail, ears, for a cat, leopard, etc. Black and white makes for a zebra, and all pink makes a Flamingo. Students arrive on Camouflage Day and present their costume in front of the class. We try to guess what animal they are. We discuss camouflage, etc. I take their picture. Military camouflage is allowed also and the students share who is currently serving in the armed forces. They seem very proud. The 2nd Graders love to see their teacher in Camouflage also!
Get colored toothpicks and count out about 25 of each color. Usually they come in red, blue, yellow and green. Make sure the students understand that there is the same amount of each color. Next mark off a small section of grass within your school grounds. While your students are watching sprinkle the toothpick around the area of grass. Inform the kids that they will work together as a group for a set amount of time to retrieve as many of the toothpicks as they can. You can have them predict what the results will be. Results: Students will locate fewer of the green toothpicks. This really helps those students who have difficulty understanding how something they see so easily can all of a sudden blend in with it's environment.
Students can research and then dress up like animals, designing their costumes and the background. Other classes can visit your virtual zoo where your dressed up students will tell about themselves and how they use camouflage.
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