Monday, June 20, 2011

The Land Down Under

This week I'm teaching about Australia and the animals that live there. Some years I do a Marsupial unit and other years (this year) I do an Australian unit so I can teach about all kinds of animals. Today I mentioned to the kids a few fun facts about Australia, like how they are just starting winter while we are just starting summer, and how some of their words are different than ours even though they mean the same thing. I read that cotton candy is called fairy floss there. Is that true? I hope so, because when I told the kids that they giggled and thought it was so cool! (Maybe my Australian follower Melissa from Honey Bee Books can help me out with this one!) Anyway, I also read the book Over in Australia by Marianne Berkes, to give a little introduction about some of the animals we will be learning about this week.

Oh, I love these kinds of books. Love, love, love! They are like Over in the Meadow and there are a bunch of different kinds, each one focusing on a specific habitat or place. Whenever I read them to the class, the kids always say the part of the baby animals. ("Hop," said the mother. "We hop," said the two.) It's so stinkin' cute!

For our craft today I found a coloring sheet from Enchanted Learning that had several Australian animals on it. I cut out all the animals. Then I found a map of Australia, also from Enchanted Learning. I photocopied that onto green paper. Then I put out glue sticks and colored pencils and the kids colored the animals and glued them to the map.

This activity got the kids all excited to learn about these animals, especially the koala, which many called a bear. Ah, ah, ah! Can't wait for tomorrow!


Melissa @ Honey Bee Books said...

Hi Betsy, it looks like your class is having some great fun with Aussie Animals! I think my favourite would have to be the wombat - Diary of a Wombat by Jackie French is a lovely story! You are right about the fairy floss, we don't use the word candy much here. We call candy lollies. Another great Aussie slang word is cackleberries which are eggs. My kids love this one. Rhyming slang is also fun - dog and bone is the phone, frog and toad is the road. Have fun with the rest of your Australian animal theme. Let me know if you need more info.

Betsy said...

Cackleberries -- I love it! Thanks for your help, Melissa!

Pauline said...

We call eggs bum nuts too "O))) Pauline from Australia