First Grade to the Zoo!

This is the first year I’ve taken kids to the zoo in the fall.  And you know, I wonder why we’ve never done it before!?  Who needs to be there in May when it’s hot and ALL of the other teachers around town also have the idea of going to the zoo during their animal unit?  We had the idea to go now, when we thought we’d have a chance for good weather as well as a chance to front-load our kiddos with information for when we do study animals later this year.  We tried it last year in 5th grade for our study on the Cahokians (went to Cahokia Mounds BEFORE the unit instead of after!) and it was great!  Once we got into the unit, there were so many times where we could tie our conversations to specific experiences we knew that all of our learners had been a part of.  This made the connections they created even more powerful!

That being said, we knew it this would be a great idea, and THANKFULLY we got one of those sunny, crisp and cool kind of all days instead of one of those St. Louis fall days that are cold, rainy and dreary!  Our kids were excited, we had loads of helpful parents and we were on our way!

Our kiddos went with a job–to take the temperature of certain places in the zoo and record the time as well as the temperature.  This would tie to the work in our Matter & Energy unit where they are expected to know how to do just this thing.  They decided on the places we’d record, as well, which made this an even more meaningful task.

Thanks to Mrs. Ross, Ms. Branco and Mrs. Buesching (plus a few of my own!) I have LOADS of pictures to share with you.  While I should probably caption every last one of them, I am just going to show them all to you here in a fabulous slide show.  It’s really hard not to smile when you see how stinking cute all the kids–and the animals–are!

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Just one more thing…I asked everyone what their favorite thing about the trip was and here’s what they said.  Priceless answers 🙂 :

Charlie: “Being in Landen’s group!”

Landen: “The picture I took with the bear!”

Amelia: “When I saw the giraffes…”

Makayla: “The elephants.”

Sara: “Seeing the zebras and being with my friends.”

JKB: “Penguins.”

Lauren: “We joined up with another group and spent time with our friends and took pictures together!”

Ava: “Elephant poop.”

Kylie: “The seal tunnel.”

C.J.: “Seeing the tigers, lions, giraffes, and zebras.”

Emily: “The reptile house.”

Millie: “We saw the seal show before lunch!”

Ella Marie: “The log with snake eggs and the zebras.”

Nate: “When we saw an eagle.”

Jacob: “I ate a second lunch.”

Peyton: “I got to stand by an eagle.”

Thomas: “Lions!”

Diego: “Lions!”

We had a great time and learned a ton!  I’m excited to see how this learning connects with our animal study that comes this Spring. 🙂  THANK YOU to the parents who helped make this happen!  What a fun day at one of the best zoos in the country! 🙂

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