Lesson Plan

Squirrels Need A Home - or - Bats Need A Cave


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Grade Level:
Kindergarten-Third Grade
Biology: Animals, Ecology, Environment, Science and Technology
20-35 minutes
Group Size:
Up to 36
indoors or outdoors
Home, habitat, game


This lesson plan is a part of "Making Connections: A Curriculum Guide to Mammoth Cave National Park, GrK-3", produced by the park's Environmental Education program.  The GrK-3 Guide comprises ten lessons; this is lesson 6 of the set.

Students discover how their impact on a forest affects that habitat.


The students will be able to:
  1. Become a productive team member by following the directions to the activity.
  2. Conceptualize how people’s impact on a forest (or cave) changes that environment. 


This game teaches the concept that animals need a place to live. It also illustrates the importance of people making appropriate choices when wildlife habitat is involved. This activity develops the concept that squirrels need a tree to live in and when the tree is taken away squirrels can be left homeless.

Sometimes the game is played as bats needing a cave. The change used with bats is boarding entrances to a cave vs. using a “Bat Friendly Gate.”  It can be explained that sometimes people need to protect their cave from trespassers. The cave could be vandalized and people could also be injured. Many times people board up the entrance ways to keep people out. The only problem is, it also keeps bats out. The other alternative is using a “Bat Friendly Gate” over the entrance. This keeps people out, but the squares of the gate are large enough to allow bats to fly in and out freely.


 None are needed.



The teacher is able to evaluate the students during the game’s discussions.


  1. The students could make posters telling people to think about the animals before they make any decisions that might effect the animals home. 
  2. The students may want to draw a picture of another animal that might be effected by cutting down trees. 
  3. The students could make a squirrel feeder and observe squirrel activity around the school. 
  4. The students could write another Government Agency, The U.S. Forest Service and request posters dealing with trees and their inhabitants.   


home, habitat, squirrels or bats, “Bat Friendly Gate”

Last updated: April 14, 2015