Activity time: 30 minutes
Materials for Activity
- Nature, science, and travel magazines that can be cut up (e.g. National Geographic, Ranger Rick)
- Scissors, including left-handed scissors
- Glue sticks or push pins
- Large sheets of green and brown construction paper
Preparation for Activity
- Collect magazines with pictures of animals that represent a wide variety, including the microscopic (one-celled animals) and the extinct (dinosaurs). You might also find and print out pictures from the Internet.
- Directly on a bulletin board that you and the children can easily reach, build a large construction paper-tree with roots, trunk, and branches.
- Set magazines and scissors at work tables.
Description of Activity
Participants combine their scientific understand of the beginnings of life with taxonomy by creating a Tree of Life bulletin board.
Invite participants to cut out pictures of animals. Be sure to include insects, small and unusual sea creatures, worms, birds, and people. Once you have a large selection, begin categorizing the animals. Ask questions such as, "Do spiders belong with insects, or should they be included with other eight-legged critters like crabs?" Let participants decide; the taxonomy need not be scientifically correct.
Once the group has determined categories, attach pictures to the tree on the bulletin board with glue sticks or push pins. Determine which pictures belong at the roots and which belong on branches.
Title the bulletin board "UUs Love to Discover." At the bottom, attach the statement "We learn from the results of science and are guided by reason."
Including All Participants
If someone is not able to use scissors/post on the bulletin board, have them work with a partner who will cut out/post pictures they choose.