Sunday, 20 May 2012

Zoo Fun!

Wow, it has been a crazy couple of weeks! I have been neglecting my poor little blog, but I am back! Thank goodness for long weekends!

This week we went on our first grade field trip to the zoo. We had so much fun! Even with an hour and fifteen minute bus ride (each way).... eek! I was lucky to have so many good parent volunteers, that I didn't have to stress out too much during the trip. I just got to take my small group around and have a good time. Here are some pics from our trip:

 American Bisons

Bactrian Camels (two humps)

Grant's Zebras

Male Lion

Female Lion


There were peacocks everywhere! We saw about 5 with their feathers all out. One of my boys started talking to this one and said, "Hey Peacock, spread your feathers!"

And he did... :) 


Blue-Crowned Pigeon (reminded the kids of Mo Willems' pigeon on a bad hair day!)
Geese and Goslings


Strange Bird

Fun times!!

We had a blast! It was the first time some of my kiddos had been to the zoo. Here are some activities we did beforehand to get ready for our trip to the zoo...

We graphed who had been/not been to the zoo before. Students wrote their names on the graph.

I had this book "Should There Be Zoos?" from teaching fourth graders persuasive writing and even though it was way over the heads of my first graders, I read some parts of the passages and we talked about the Pros and Cons of zoos. Here are some of their ideas:

Our big zoo project though, were these little zoo animal booklets. Each day we learned about a new zoo animal. We checked out websites, read books, watched videos, and looked at many pictures. We completed these fill-in-the-blank animal cards together (inspired by one of my fabulous teammate's ideas). On the back, I gave each student a real picture of the animal and they coloured their own version of the animal. I also downloaded a map of the zoo from the zoo's website, printed it half-size and used that as a cover for the book.

I laminated the cards and placed them on a binder ring. My students were so excited to bring them to the zoo with us on our field trip. They walked around the whole time holding their little booklets, pointing at the animals we learned about, studying the map, and talking about some of the facts we learned! It was such a great way to really connect our field trip to our learning. Plus it makes a great souvenir! Parents loved them.

I decided to put together my booklet to put up on TpT. So if you are interested in creating your own zoo animal book, please check out my "All About Zoo Animals" pack! Click the picture to visit my store.

Included in the package is a book cover, 15 animal pages, 15 pages of animal pictures (or print them on 2x4" labels to make stickers), and an answer key.

When we got back from our field trip, I put together this little reflection page to include in our memory books. Students drew a few pictures of animals we saw at the zoo and wrote about the best part of the trip! You can download it for free by clicking the picture. It prints on 8x14" paper.

I will leave you with some exciting news! I am still going to be moving schools next year (which makes me super sad... I haven't broke the news to my firsties yet), but I found out that I will be teaching first grade again! So I will remain First Grade Garden next year! I am so excited about that! I did discover some amazing second grade blogs, though, and I will continue to stalk them anyways ;)

That's it for tonight! Starting Tuesday I only have 27 days left! We start our ABC Countdown (idea from Jill at Marvelous Multiagers!) on Wednesday! More to come this week... Good night!


  1. The zoo animal book is really cute!!! I have a zoo packet, but I have yet to clean it up for TPT (-;

    The 3AM Teacher
    Visit The 3AM Teacher FB Page

  2. WOW!! Very nice pics collection i like it i want to visit at your ZOO..
    Thank you for post.

    Garden Centre Argyll

  3. I would never have guessed that bird was a penguin :)
    Grade ONEderful
    Ruby Slippers