Lion Country Safari
Classification 1 Program
(Designed for grades 1-3)
To identify each of the five major groups of vertebrates, as well as to identify similarities and differences among the groups.
There are millions of species of animals on earth. Some of these species are very different from each other, while others share similar characteristics. Scientists use these shared characteristics to place living things into various categories. Classifying animals in this way makes it easier for zoologists to study earth’s biodiversity. One of the main differences among animal species is that some have a backbone while others do not. Animals without backbones are called invertebrates, while animals with backbones are called vertebrates. Vertebrates are placed into five major categories: fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds, and mammals. This program will focus on vertebrates by introducing the students to Linnaeus’ system of Classification, which is a scientific sorting based on physical characteristics. Students will be introduced to some live examples of each of these five classes, reviewing the characteristics that the animals in each class have in common, and contrasting the differences. Students will be given a set of data to sort into the 5 classes in order to draw inferences, a key skill in critical thinking. Students will be able to analyze and describe why animals are classified as they are.
This program meets the following Next Generation Sunshine State Standards and is STEAM compliant:
SC.1.L.14.1: Make observations of living things and their environment using the five senses.
SC.3.L.15.1: Classify animals (mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, fish, arthropods, vertebrates and invertebrates, live births and lay eggs) according to physical characteristics and behavior.
MAFS.1.G.1.3: Partition circles and rectangles into two and four equal shares, describe the shares using the words halves, fourths, and quarters, and use the phrases half of, fourth of, and quarter of.
MAFS.2.G.1.3: Partition circles and rectangles into two, three, or four equal shares, describe the shares using the words halves, thirds, half of, a third of, etc., and describe the whole as two halves, three thirds, four fourths.
MAFS.1.MD.1.a: Understand how to use a ruler to measure length to the nearest inch.
MAFS.2.MD.1.1: Measure the length of an object to the nearest inch, foot, centimeter, or meter by selecting and using appropriate tools such as rulers, yardsticks, meter sticks, and measuring tapes.
MAFS.2.MD.1.3: Estimate lengths using units of inches, feet, yards, centimeters, and meters.
VA.1.F.1.1: Use various art media and real or imaginary choices to create artwork.
VA.2.H.3.1: Describe connections made between creating with art ideas and creating with information from other content areas.
VA.3.F.1.1: Manipulate art media and incorporate a variety of subject matter to create imaginative artwork.
- Practice grouping items according to their similar characteristics (examples: texture, size, color).
- Ask students to list animals that they see in their backyard or in their neighborhood. Ask them to classify these animals.
- Download and ask the students to complete the Classification worksheet;
Download and ask the students to complete the Classification worksheet;
- Ask students to take photos of the animals that they see on their visit to Lion Country Safari. Later, they can classify them into the 5 vertebrate groups.
- On their visit, ask students to complete this chart. Discuss their results in your classroom.