6 Steps for Guiding Students Through Researching and Writing an Animal Report
Are you looking for an exciting way to get your students engaged in learning how to write animal reports? Are you interested in a FREE Animal Report Template? Not only will students be encouraged to explore and discover interesting facts about animals, but they will also gain valuable research and writing skills through this process.
In this blog post, we’ll provide easy tips on how to teach your elementary students about animals while also educating them on the structure of a great animal report. We’ll explain different ways for kids to research their chosen topic and take notes about the animal facts they learn. Additionally, we will link resources such as an animal report template which offers a fast yet effective framework for completing the project.
So let’s dive in – it’s time to learn more about teaching your class all things useful with fun-filled reports about animals!
Introduce the project – explain to students what an animal report is and why they should write animal reports
Introducing animal reports to your students is a great way to get them thinking about animals and animal research! An animal report is an assignment that requires students to research an animal of their choosing and present information such as diet, habitat, and lifestyle in order to build their animal knowledge.
With the help of animal research resources and a report template for guidance, students can explore new animal information that will help improve their understanding of the animal kingdom. Encouraging your students to write animal reports can also help develop essential research and writing skills while they have fun learning about animals at the same time!
Brainstorm a List of Animals and Choose An Animal to Write About
Start by having students brainstorm a list of animals. Teachers can do open brainstorming without categories or they ask students to brainstorm animals within specific categories, such as mammals, birds, and fish.
We have a FREE Brainstorming tool in the FREE Animal Report Template resource! Click the image below to get the FREE Animal Report Template!
Once students have brainstormed their list of animals, ask them to choose the top four animals they want to learn about and then choose the one animal they are most interested in studying. Asking students to give you several animals and their favorite will help you assign separate animals to each student.
Outline the tasks and necessary components of an animal report
Writing an animal report is a lot of fun for your students, as it will help them become acquainted with different animals and develop their research skills.
The steps that I have students take when writing an animal report include:
- Choosing an animal
- Reading about the animal and watching videos about it
- Taking notes about the animal
- Organizing their notes and facts into categories
- Using a template or graphic organizer to start their writing
- Writing a rough draft
- Writing a final draft
- Putting it all together
I don’t present all of these steps to students all at once, but I will provide a general overview, like researching, organizing, and writing.
Research and Write down Facts About the Animal
To begin the process, set your students off with a task to research a particular animal. They need to include information such as the animal’s physical features, behavior, and habitat, as well as any interesting facts about their subject.
At this point, I allow students to write down their facts as a brainstormed list or using a circle map. I do not require students to organize and categorize the facts yet. This allows them to just focus on the information they have and get it down on paper. After the facts are written, I will ask students to look at their list of facts and try to group things together that have a common theme or idea.
Provide online resources and books for animal research topics
Finding ideas for animal research topics can be a fun and engaging way to get kids started on their animal report project. There are plenty of online resources available, such as National Geographic Kids, where students can access information about different types of animals and their habitats.
Books are also an excellent resource, with specific titles focusing on individual species or whole collections about different types of animals. Encourage your students to search for interesting creatures they wouldn’t normally encounter in everyday life – from unique insects to fascinating fish.
High-Interest Animal Articles for Elementary Students
It’s hard to find informational articles and books written for students to use as research tools. In fact, it was so challenging, I decided to write my own!
I have Animal Articles available individually, by habitats, and all together as a collection! Each animal article resource includes engaging, high-interest text, scaffolded reading comprehension resources, a fact sort that will help students organize all the facts and details, and mini-report writing options.
With my collection of 142 Animal Articles, your students will get invaluable materials for reading, research, note-taking, and writing about animals. The Animal Article Collection gives you access to ALL 142 animals, an animal report, informational writing tools, and more! Check it out here.
Researching these unique animals could not only spark a new love for the animal kingdom but also give them access to a wealth of knowledge that can help shape the outline and template for their reports.
Teach Students How to Research, Take Notes, and Organize Facts
I start our animal report project with an introduction to informational writing. We read about an animal, take notes on it using a circle map, and work with the facts and details to organize a paragraph about the animal.
Check out this blog post to discover the specifics of our initial week in teaching informational writing. You won’t want to miss how we kick off this unit!
Once they’ve finished their research and gathered enough animal facts, you can provide them with an animal report writing template to help them structure and organize the facts into something cohesive. This should include sections like Introduction and Description, Habitat, Behaviour, and Conclusion.
Offer tips on using facts and evidence in their writing
When teaching your students about writing an animal report, it’s important to emphasize the importance of using facts and evidence. Encourage them to back up their opinions or arguments with credible research from experts, as well as general knowledge. Using facts and evidence in their writing will help your students create an effective animal report that is both informative and accurate.
If you are looking for guidance on how to help your students organize facts when writing about animals, then this comprehensive series of blog posts is the answer. Through the use of engaging nonfiction articles and fact sorts, I effectively show students how to extract information from a text, break apart the information into usable parts, then move the parts around to organize the facts and details into a cohesive paragraph or multi-paragraph report about an animal.
Create a template or provide guidelines on the structure of an animal report
Writing an animal report can be a fun and educational way to teach students about the different species on our planet. To help guide your students through this project, create a template or provide guidelines on the structure of their report.
Animal reports are a great way to provide insight into different species while at the same time teaching important research and writing skills.
Our Animal Report for Any Animal is designed specifically to make research and report writing fun and engaging. It’s packed with differentiated graphic organizers, animal report templates, various options as well as other useful items! By taking advantage of this versatile resource your students will be able to explore their favorite animals in a unique way.
FREE Animal Report Template
Would you like a FREE Animal Report Template to use with your students?
With an animal report, teachers have the unique opportunity to help students engage in complex critical thinking and communication skills. We provided several resources and tips to guide them through the entire process. From introducing the report to helping them research their chosen topic and sorting facts into categories, having a clear understanding of each step is integral for the successful completion of this task.
Ultimately, with the appropriate guidance, students will have what they need to confidently approach and complete their own animal reports. Thank you for taking the time to learn about teaching animal reports – we hope that your class enjoys this project!
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