Hi. This is Innocent.
I recently taught the AoC Rushubi and Nyange students about types of animals. It’s true at each class session we talk to the children bordering Rwanda’s Volcanoes National Park about taking care of all living things and this lesson not only focuses on types of animals living in the forest next to their home, but also those living elsewhere around the world either on land or in water. There are more than 1.5 million species of animals in the world- and millions more still waiting to be discovered.
As I am teaching, I show the children an illustration of a blue whale, the largest animal in the world that happens to be far bigger than a bus!
In addition to animals living in Volcanoes National Park our students learn much more about animals living in other Rwanda national parks such as Akagera National Park, plus what swims in the Indian Ocean, the Mediterranean Sea, Lake Victoria, Lake Tanganyika, River Nile, what hops around on Madagascar, and what is beating the cold of the Arctic Circle.
Dieudonne reads aloud in Kinyarwanda the translation for invertebrates which is part of our vocabulary of the day.
We began the lesson by watching nature films, (please click here for Valerie’s film day blog), after which I then discuss with the class the difference between vertebrates and invertebrates. The beautiful nature films also made the kids aware that amazing animals are found in every part of the world.
Upon receiving laminated animal cards, I suggest to my students to carefully study the features of the animals so they may correctly put them under the correct group on our Types of Animals grass mat display.
Over the course of several years and several safaris throughout Africa, Team AoC uses photos taken in the different locations and uses them as learning materials in the classrooms. We also have the privilege of using photos from friends such as Peter Riger of the Houston Zoo from his visits to Painted Dog in Zimbabwe and Cheetah Conservation in Botswana and Doug Groves with his babies in Botswana at his place called Living With Elephants. Thanks friends and I hope work and animals are fine!
Here is our grass mat on which students hang animal cards according to their characteristics.
After every student has had chance to place their animal card under its correct group, children come to realize that there are two general animal groups: vertebrates and invertebrates. They now understand that vertebrates can be split into five groups namely fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds, and mammals whereas invertebrates which make up 95% of all animals in the world can basically be split into arthropods, mollusks, echinoderms, and annelids.
A fun class, please stay tuned for more.