Animal life cycles and habitats are common topics in early childhood settings. This activity gives children an opportunity to learn about an animal they have or would like to have in their lives, and to express their feelings about it.

set up ideas:
Create a research environment with all of the supplies for drawing and books for researching. Journals may come in handy with this activity as well.

let's get started

To create your animal drawings, all you'll need are crayons and paper. For the learning portion of this activity, you'll either need books or photo cards with animal information, or an internet connection to gather information about the animals.

step 1
Have each child draw either a picture of their pet, an animal that they would like to own or any animal they would like to learn more about.
step 2
Once the pictures are complete, help the children find out more information about their animal. You may wish to work together in small groups if multiple children choose the same animal.
step 3
Have the children share their picture with the rest of the group and tell them one new thing they learned about the animal.
step 4
Share what you've all learned together as a group and display your artworks for everyone to see.

Whether you are discussing household pets or the wild animals of the jungle, there's always something new to learn. The children may already know a lot about the animal they've chosen, so encourage them to share their knowledge with one another, as well as look for supporting sources.
Tips and Tricks Tips and Tricks
You may choose to restrict the children's internet searches to reputable educational sources, or an online encyclopedia. This can help them browse safely and avoid distractions.
Follow Up ActivityFollow up Activity
Turn what you've learned into a story! Have children use puppets, masks or dramatic play costumes to improvise a scene. Have each child act for the animal that they chose and try to incorporate what you've learned into the story.