Animal Adaptaptions

This lesson plan walks through the planning, implementation, assessment, and extention pieces of a lesson dealing with animal adaptations.  All the master copies needed are easily accessible from the main page of the lesson plan.  The information the students need to complete the activity can be found on the website linked to in the lesson plan. The learning expectations all deal with an organisms ability to live in particular environments.  The resource is adaptable to various grade levels.  The Kratts' Creatures website does require a login, but it is free.  The lesson plan also has an assessment piece and a few enrichment/extension activities.

Standards & Objectives

Academic standards
GLE 0207.5.1
Investigate the relationship between an animals characteristics and the features of the environment where it lives.
GLE 0307.5.1
Explore the relationship between an organisms characteristics and its ability to survive in a particular environment.
GLE 0407.5.1
Analyze physical and behavioral adaptations that enable organisms to survive in their environment.
GLE 0507.5.1
Investigate physical characteristics associated with different groups of animals.
Alignment of this item to academic standards is based on recommendations from content creators, resource curators, and visitors to this website. It is the responsibility of each educator to verify that the materials are appropriate for your content area, aligned to current academic standards, and will be beneficial to your specific students.
Learning objectives: 


To expand students’ knowledge of animal features and behaviors that can help or hinder their survival in a particular habitat.

Essential and guiding questions: 

Ask students:

  • What would happen if the animals switched habitats?
  • What adaptation features would be useful or useless in the new habitat?
  • Do you think the animal could survive in the unfamiliar habitat?
  • What does that tell you about how animals adapt to their environments?


Lesson Variations

Blooms taxonomy level: 
Extension suggestions: 


  • The Science NetLinks lesson Bird Beaks can be used to build upon the concepts introduced in this lesson. 
  • MBGnet helps students explore the world's biomes (rainforest, tundra, grasslands, etc.) and its freshwater and marine ecosystems. When students choose a biome or ecosystem, they'll discover a wide variety of information on plants, animals, and the amazing habitats they live in. There are also photos of students like them who use the site and talk about habitats.
  • Journey North is a fun and interesting website in which kids from over 6,000 schools in the U.S. and Canada learned more about animal adaptation and the environment by tracking the journeys of a dozen migratory species. The site not only provides information on interesting animals—like hummingbirds, manatees, bald eagles, and caribou—it also allows students to use live satellite animal tracking data, contact real scientists, and make their own field observations.

Helpful Hints

What you need:

  • Animal Adaptation (Student Activity Sheet)
  • Animal Adaptations (eSheet)