Did you know January 20th is National Penguin Day? I just learned this recently and was so excited for an official reason to spread my love for penguins! Not only are they cute in their little “tuxedos,” but they’re also fascinating animals.
Learning about penguins can easily be a cross-curricular unit or just a fun day with your students! Here are five penguin activities you can easily do with your students to celebrate National Penguin Day.
- Movement or Brain Break – Practice waddling like a penguin. Make it more challenging by waddling like a father penguin with an “egg” resting on top of your feet. You can use a bean bag or small stuffed animal as the penguin egg.
- Reading – Pair a nonfiction text with some penguin-themed picture books. Some of my favorite penguin read aloud books include:
- Art/Writing – Create a penguin craftivity, such as this directed drawing from Natalie Lynn, and tie it into a writing prompt.
- Science – Learn how penguins stay warm by doing a blubber science experiment. To prepare, place one large Ziploc bag inside of another. Fill the space between the two bags with vegetable shortening, such as Crisco. Roll the top down to enclose the Crisco and secure with Duct tape. Feel how cold a bucket of ice water is without the blubber and then, try again after inserting your hand into the center of the blubber bag. Check out this video from SciShow kids to see a demonstration.
- Reading/Science – Read a nonfiction penguin book and complete accompanying activities to learn about how penguins are unique! I created this nonfiction penguin book so it can easily integrate into your curriculum’s learning objectives with 4 graphic organizers, a vocabulary activity, and a hands-on board game that ties in many nonfiction reading skills.
Enjoy National Penguin Day!