Sunday, October 2, 2005

Australia Unit Study

Australia 5 Day Plan

Animals to Study:

Tasmanian Devil - Coloring Sheet (convert to b/w)
Koala - Coloring Sheet
Kangaroo - Coloring Sheet
Platypus - Coloring Sheet
Sugar Glider - Coloring Sheet (convert to b/w)
Bandicoot - coloring sheet (convert to b/w)
Frilly-Necked Lizard - coloring sheet (convert to b/w)
Look up Australia on Google Earth
Color map of Australia
Paint the flag

work on money
Buried Treasure: Bury coins in a bowl of rice or sand. Have her find specific coins.
Coin Rubbing:
Hot-glue several coins onto index cards.  Lay thin paper on top
and clip it with clothespins to hold the paper it place. Use the flat
side of a crayon to rub over the paper and make an impression of the

Patterns: Make patterns with coins. For example, heads, tails, heads, tails; or, penny, nickel, penny, nickel.
work on recognizing and writing numbers 1-20
sorting and sizing with koala craft

air/gliding activities

Fill a bowl with water.  Place a cup in it, open side down. 
Tip the edge up and watch what happens.  Talk about the air
bubbles and the air leaving the cup, letting water in.   Blow
up a balloon.  Talk about air from our lungs; slowly let the air
out of the balloon and feel it.  Blow up a balloon and let go of
it - watch it fly around.

Straw Glider

What You Need
  1. Straw
  2. Construction paper
  3. Scissors
  4. Tape
  5. Pencil
  6. Ruler
What You Do
  1. First,
    lay a piece of construction paper down on your table. With your ruler,
    measure and mark with your pencil a strip that is 1 inch wide and 8
    inches long. Then carefully cut out this strip.
  2. With
    your ruler and pencil, measure and mark a second strip of paper that is
    1/2 inch wide and 6 inches long. Cut this strip out of the paper.
  3. Take the longer strip and form a circle or loop. Tape the two ends together.
  4. Take the shorter strip of paper and form a circle or loop. Tape the two ends together.
  5. Put the longer strip on one end of your straw. Tape it in place.
  6. Put the shorter strip on the other end of your straw. Tape it in place.
  7. Try
    sailing or flying your straw glider. Try sailing it with the smaller
    loop at the front; try sailing it with the bigger loop at the front.
    What happens?
  8. You might try adding
    some more loops or wings to the straw. Or try making a glider with two
    straws taped together. Or try twisting paper strips to see if that
    makes a difference.

The paper rings or loops are like wings. The air pressure that is on
top and below the loops create what we call "lift." This lift makes it
possible for the object or straw glider to sail in the air.

Australia is the leading producer of wool.
Gather clothes made of different material such as wool, rayon/silk,
cotton, etc.  Compare textures and weight.  Do an experiment
with the clothes. "Which material will dry the fastest?
Soak each piece of material in water.
Place the wet pieces on a tray and place the tray in the sun.
Check them periodically and record the order in which the different materials dried.

Talk about the different ecosystems/habitats in Australia.

4 egg whites
1 cup sugar
3 drops vanilla extract
1/4 tsp cream of tartar
pinch of salt
Passion fruit pulp, fruit salad, or strawberries
1 cup heavy cream

1. Preheat oven to 200 degrees
2. Beat egg whites with salt and cream of tartar until frothy.
3. Gradually beat in sugar a little at a time.
4. Continue beating until stiff and sugar is dissolved. Beat in vanilla.
5. Cover a cookie sheet with brown paper. Draw a 9" circle and spread meringue
evenly within the lines. Make a slight hollow, in the center for filling.
6. Bake 1 hour.
7. Turn off heat and let dry at least 2 hours.
8. When ready to serve, whip cream until thick, fold in fruit and fill center of pavlova.

Anzac Biscuits
1 cup rolled oats
1 cup white flour (sifted)
1 cup sugar
3/4 cup shredded coconut
4 oz. butter or margarine
2 tblsp light-colored pancake syrup, molasses, or treacle
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tblsp boiling water

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Combine oats, sifted flour, sugar, and coconut.
3. Combine butter/margarine with syrup in sauce pan; stir over low heat until
melted and thoroughly blended.
4. Mix baking soda with boiling water and add to butter and syrup mixture.
5. Stir liquid mixture into dry ingredients until batter is formed.
6. Place teaspoons of batter onto a greased cookie sheet about 3 inches apart to
allow for spreading.
7. Bake in 350 degree oven for 20 minutes.
8. Place biscuits on rack to cool.

Jumping Kangaroo
Australia map collage
Cut a boomerang shape out of cardboard, let them paint it.
Puzzle prints (from

What You Need:

  • old puzzle pieces
  • white glue
  • cereal box cardboard
  • safety scissors
  • paint or printmaking ink
  • paintbrush or printmaking brayer (or roller)
  • Printmaking 101 (click here)
  • Basic printmaking supply list (see below)
  • Printing with a brayer instructions (see below)
  • A word about paper (see below)
  • construction paper

What You Do:

  1. Read through Printmaking 101 and Printmaking 102
  2. Talk about printmaking and how when you make a print, you can make several of the same image.
  3. Cut a piece of cereal box down to a nice size (about 6" x 8")
  4. Take
    several puzzle pieces and arrange them on the cereal box cardboard. The
    pieces can be arranged to create a picture, or they can just be laid
    down in a random pattern.
  5. Once you are happy with the way the pieces look, glue them down and let the glue dry for an hour or so.
  6. If
    you have a printmaking brayer, follow the directions below for printing
    with a brayer. If you don't have a printmaking brayer, use a paintbrush
    to cover the puzzle pieces with paint (or ink).
  7. Lay a sheet of paper on top of the painted puzzle pieces and rub gently with the palm of your hand.
  8. Remove the paper and sign the print and add the numbers 1/4
  9. Do
    3 more prints so you have four all together. The second print should
    have the numbers 2/4; the third soul have the numbers 3/4 and the
    fourth should have the number 4/4 (of course you can do more than four,
    but then you have to number accordingly)
Do lesson 1 and 2 from the art curriculum
Koala Craft
Sandpaper Prints
(mock aboriginal cave drawings)
Use crayons to draw and color a design on sandpaper, pressing
hard.  Color in as much as possible.  Place the sandpaper
colored side down onto white construction paper.  Place both
pieces of paper in between two pieces of newspaper.  Press the
newspaper with a hot iron.  Let cool and then remove the
newspaper.  Peel the sandpaper off of the white paper.  The
print is now on the white paper.


listen to some opera (Sydney Opera House)
The rough guide to Australian Aboriginal music CD
Books to Read
In search of the real Tasmanian devil / by James Preller J 599.2 P
Australia J 994
Into wild Australia / John Woodward J590
The aboriginal peoples of Australia / Anne Bartlett J 305.89915 BAR
Coco's surprise / written by Karen van Holst Pellekaan E H
Koalas / by Gail Saunders-Smith E S
The koala : the bear that's not a bear / Diana Star Helmer J 599.25 H
platypus 599.29
Wombat & Bandicoot : best of friends :three stories / by Kerry Argent. E A
Bush walkabout.
Lowe, Beulah. J 398.2 P
Island ancestors Oceanic art from the Masco Collection Allen Wardwell 709.011099 W
World of the koala [videorecording]
Kangaroos faces in the mob / [videorecording]
Good Links:
Australian Animals -since this isn't an 'official' site, I would double check all the facts they have on there.
Australian Theme links
Rainforest Australia  (I didn't know they had one)
Arthur's Australian Clipart
22 Australian Activities/Lessons
Australia at San Diego Zoo - includes video clips of animals

1 comment:

  1. We studied Australia a couple of years ago! It was fascinating!!! Thanks for sharing! --julie


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