Robert Rockwell, Debra Reichert Hoge, and Bill Searcy
Robert Rockwell, Debra Reichert Hoge, and Bill Searcy show kid-friendly ways for the practice of oral language skills in:
Linking Language: Simple Language and Literacy Activites Throughout the Curriculum
As part of this category and vocabulary building activity, children group animals and then label that group of animals. Some group names will be familiar to the children, while others may be very new.
What you will need:
- Various animal pictures or small toy animals -- fish, kittens, puppies, birds of many types, lions, wolves, horses. Printed word cards with each group name, if appropriate.
Words you can use:
- various animal names
What to do:
- Put pictures of animals or small toy animals into the center of the circle.
- The children cooperate in putting the "groups" of animals together -- fish with fish, lions with lions.
- The children provide or learn the group name for the various animal groups. For example, a school of fish, flock of birds, litter of puppies, etc. Depending on the age and abilities of the children, provide word cards to match each name for literacy development.
- Pick a group of animals and make the animal sounds.
- Learn the words for parents and offspring in each animal group. Incorporate more difficult group words.
Questions to assess language development
- EXPRESSIVE LANGUAGE
- Can the children name the group independently?
- Can the children name the group with a prompt?
- RECEPTIVE LANGUAGE
- Can the children sort the animals into groups?
- READING EXPERIENCES
All About Alligators by Jim Arnosky
This beautifully illustrated book will teach children how to tell the difference between a crocodile and an alligator. A Bundle of Beasts by Patricia Cooper
This book contains funny poems about unusual collective nouns, such as a smack of jelly fish and a murder of crows.
- A Cache of Jewels by Ruth Heller
Using rhyme, the poet introduces the reader to a host of collective nouns. Some examples include a gam of whales, a kindle of kittens, and a drift of swans.
- WRITING EXPERIENCES
Help children make a dictionary of animal groups. Let each child choose her favorite animal or group name. Have them copy or dictate the group name. Then they can illustrate their page to be put into a class book. Put the finished book in the class library.
This activity (excerpt) is taken from: Linking Language: Simple Language and Literacy Activites Throughout the Curriculum
by Robert Rockwell, Debra Reichert Hoge, and Bill Searcy
Page 26. ISBN: 0876592027
© 1999. Gryphon House, Inc.