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Penguin Cool-Down Lesson

  • Grades 2 - 5
  • Under 1 Hour
  • Share

Inspire your class with this hands-on activity kit that utilizes the inquiry method to heighten your students’ imaginations and engineering skills. This kit includes three engaging activities about the warming effect of sunlight on Earth’s surface while having your students help their new penguin pals stay cool.

Instructional Goal

The goal of this activity is for students to practice their STEM skills to complete three different tasks to help the penguins.

Activity Steps

  • Define the Problem – Each of the three activities centers around helping a penguin or a group of penguins avoid the heat of the sun.
  • Available Tools – Introduce the groups to the pipe cleaners, foil-paper sheets, and scissors, explaining that they are to use these tools to complete the task.
  • Make a Plan – Tell each group to discuss a plan for making the best shelter or umbrella that they can. Ask them to draw or write their plan before beginning.
  • Conduct the Task – Instruct each group to use the materials and work on the aerial view of the penguin habitat side of the work mats to build their solutions.
  • Evaluate – Direct each group to fill in the What We Designed section on the Penguin Cool-Down reproducible with a drawing or photograph of their solution and penguins. Ask them to evaluate their task by writing or telling what worked and what didn’t work in the How Did We Do? section. For young students, have them draw a simple smiley or frowny face to evaluate.

About STEM-tivity™ Class Kits - Penguin Cool-Down

This kit includes enough materials to divide your class into four working groups of up to four students each. The groups can work on the same task card at the same time, allowing them to compare and contrast their designs and models. Or, the groups can work on different task cards and then present their designs to the class.

Explore concepts related to sunlight with this engaging kit containing everything you need to lead four cooperative groups through three hands-on engineering challenges. Students will use what they have learned about the warming effects of the sun to build a shelter for penguins, an umbrella for a group of penguins, and an umbrella for a single penguin. Reviewed and approved by certified STEM instructional coaches, the kit also includes extension activities that support all the components of STEM.

Shop STEM-tivity™ Class Kits - Penguin Cool-Down

What You'll Need

Supply List

Everything you need is in the kit!

Optional classroom supplies:

  • scissors
  • tape
  • poster putty
  • glue sticks
  • rubber bands
  • pencils

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