Friday, November 9, 2012

Whose Tail? - A Guessing Game

Inspired by a recent addition to my library's non-fiction collection, Talented Tails Up Close by Melissa Stewart (Enslow, 2012), I created a guessing game activity for my upcoming Family Story Time program, "Tail Tales."
This project took a bit of time to research but was easy to put together. First I selected the animals I wanted to include, then I searched free clip art sites for images. I also used some from Microsoft Publisher. The challenge was to find images that clearly featured each animal's tail. I used Publisher to enlarge the images and to crop, enlarge and copy the tails. I printed the image, outlined each animal in black marker, cut it out and pasted it on a page that had the animal's name printed on top. I printed each tail, outlined it in black marker, cut it out, and pasted it to a page that had "Whose Tail?" printed on top. The tail "question" pages were pasted onto neon green construction paper and the animal "answer" pages were pasted onto purple construction paper. This not only adds a bit of color but also helps me know which is a question and which is an answer.

On the back of the answer pages I listed some facts about each tail. Since some of the tails will be more difficult to guess, I will use these facts as clues. For those that are guessed right away, the facts will explain why the tail is unique.
I selected nine animals for this activity: kangaroo, giraffe, squirrel, blue tail skink (lizard will be a correct answer), spider monkey ( monkey will be a correct answer), blue whale, beaver, rattlesnake, and peacock.

This game can be simplified for younger children. I would choose five well-known animals and make flannel/magnet board pieces of the animals and their tails. Since my group has older children and adults, I decided to do a more challenging version. This guessing game is also one I can use for elementary school class visits.
This week's Flannel Friday Roundup is hosted by Anna of the Future Librarian Superhero blog. Everything you ever wanted to know about Flannel Friday can be found on the Flannel Friday blog.

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