4-6, Unit Five, Activity 4: "Track Traces"

Students will use their creative skills to make drawings or designs using animal tracks. This activity will help internalize the tracks they have been studying.

Grades: 4 - 6
Time: 1 hour
Subjects: Visual arts, geometry, life science

Teacher Background:
Students will use animal tracks to create art. The Track Maker Copy Page (pdf) received prior to the field trip provides sample tracks to be used for their project. A variety of artistic media may be used. Tracks in the snow are often the best way to determine that winter animal activity is taking place in an area. Becoming a skilled "tracker" takes patience and a lot of time out in the snow observing. Each animals track is different in shape, size, and design (depending on its function). Having students study the tracks on the Track Maker Copy Page and then use their imagination to create animals, designs, or even snowflakes will help them internalize track shapes and remember some of the functional reasons for those shapes.

Materials:

  • Track Maker Copy Page saved from the park field trip
  • Drawing paper
  • Markers, paints, crayons, pencils, clay

Procedure:

  1. Have the students take out their "Track Maker Copy Page." Explain that an animal's track is unique and can reveal a lot about where it lives and what it does for a living. For example, the webbed hind feet of the beaver are adapted for swimming while the large furry hind feet of the snowshoe hare are for travelling on top of deep snow. (This may be a repeat of what was addressed during the field trip).
  2. Tell the students that they will be using their imagination, creativity, and tracks to create animal portraits, decorative designs, snow flakes, etc.. Suggest that they use the "Track Maker Copy Page" to ensure that their track pictures are accurate. Show them the examples included below. Provide art materials and other necessary direction.
  3. After the art projects are completed, ask each artist to share their creation with the class. Students should tell which tracks were used; why they decided upon those tracks (what track feature made it desirable for use in their artwork); and other relevant information they would like to share with the class.

Assessment:
Cover over the names on one of the "Track Maker Copy Pages" and make copies for each student. Have them write in the animal's name for the proper track. Draw a fairly complicated track story on the board and have students write their version of the story

Last updated: November 7, 2017

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