No matter what subject you are teaching, the study of crocodiles makes a great learning tool. Use these fearsome reptiles to teach children writing skills, art skills, science skills and geography. Along with learning basic academic skills, they'll also learn a little about the beasts themselves and the habitats in which they reside.
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Literature Crocodile Project
Read "The Enormous Crocodile" by Roald Dahl to your students or have them read it independently. After reading the story, have them create a wanted poster for the Enormous Crocodile. The poster should include some of the tricks he's pulled, what he looks like, where he was last seen and a reward amount. They should also draw a picture of the Enormous Crocodile to put in the centre of the poster. As an additional writing activity, have them write a narrative about one of the character's nasty tricks.
Alternately, you could do a classroom role play in which the Crocodile is put on trial and different students play different parts.
Art Crocodile Project
Use recyclables to have students create crocodiles. Have everyone bring in two 2-liter plastic bottles and bottle caps. Then provide them with paint, white rice, glue, wiggly eyes, tape, waxed paper, tissue and craft foam. Cut the plastic bottles in half. Take one of the bottom halves and cut it so it is only 3 inches long. Cut slits into the bottom pieces so you can slide the two bottom pieces together with the open parts facing each other, then tape them closed. Put the openings of the top pieces over either end of the bottom pieces and tape closed. Use bottle caps for legs and tissue papers for the bulging part of the eyes. Cover the crocodile with green tissue paper. Use the craft foam to make the tail, scales, feet, nostrils and teeth.
Science Crocodile Project
Have students research crocodiles. Tell them to pretend they have been put in charge of a new crocodile exhibit at the zoo. Have them create a diorama showing what the exhibit should look like, a menu of food to feed the crocodiles and several signs for zoo guests to read about the crocodiles. One sign should talk about how crocodiles survive in the wild while another should give basic facts about crocodiles.
Geography Crocodile Project
Have students pick one region where crocodiles can be found in the wild. Have them create a tourist vacation brochure with a twist. The brochure should be written as if the crocodiles were the audience. It should explain why that particular location is ideal for crocodiles and what amenities the reptiles can expect to find if they move there.
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