Wednesday, January 25, 2012

No SNOW...SO WHAT! 2nd Grade is having Polar Bear FUN!

Last week we had the very best time learning about Polar Bears!  My class loved the unit about this cold weather animal.  (They were secretly hoping for the 4 letter word~SNOW!)  They just don't know that I am still hoping we don't get it!  Non the less we enjoyed some fun learning about these furry creatures.  Take a peek below and check out our wintry activities.

You can find all of these activities and much, much more in my All About Polar Bear Unit!  Just click the image below!


We started with an anticipation guide for Polar Bears by Gail Gibbons.  I love Gail because she does a wonderful job expressing nonfiction facts through her narrative writings.  



This is a page that we found incredible.  Polar Bear paws are 12 inches across and 18 inches tall.  We had to make paws of course!  We measured paper and tore it into a polar bear paw.  We labeled the parts and added sandpaper as the pads.
They turned out so cute.  I posted them up and down the wall outside our classroom!
We also measured how tall a Polar Bear is using 2nd graders.  For us...around two and a half!
The big hit to the day was THE BLUBBER GLOVE!

If you have not done this it is a MUST!  We discussed the fact that Polar Bears have blubber that is around 3 inches thick.  We also talked about the word insulated and how the blubber keeps the polar bears warm in the cold snowy climate.
You will need the following items to complete this experiment: A bucket of ice and water   A thermometer to check the water temperature.   A tub of Crisco and  2 large gallon bags.
It is really easy to prep for.  While my students worked on their paws I pulled them as tables over to try on the BLUBBER GLOVE.

Add Crisco to a gallon bag and then place and empty bag inside it.  You will need to smash the Crisco around your hand.  Then call the students to place their hand in the empty bag that should now be surrounded by Crisco.  Have them place one hand in the ice water without the bag and the other will be in the bag.  While both hands are in the ice water talk about which hand is getting colder. I also like to check the water temperature.   We then discuss how the BLUBBER is insulating the hand and keeping it warm.  So many wonderful discussions came from this activity.  We even had a student days later come in with an article that told about how walruses have blubber and use it in the same way as Polar Bears.  What a GREAT connection!

Here is a video preview of more Polar Bear Fun!



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