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Animals in Spring

Subject: Life Sciences
Grade: K-2, 3-5, 6-8

Brief Description

Students make diagrams showing animal life cycles.


Students observe and describe the growth and development of an animal as it develops from early to more-advanced stages.


life cycle, animals, spring, diagram

Materials Needed

Lesson Plan

With students in grades K-2:

  • Display the Frogs and/or Butterfly Life Cycle site and explore with students the life cycle of a frog and/or butterfly.
  • Brainstorm with students how some other animals develop and change. As students describe the various stages in the life cycles of those animals, diagram the life cycles on the overhead or chalkboard. Encourage students to include an insect, bird, fish, and mammal in their discussions.
  • Invite students to choose animals they're familiar with and draw diagrams of animal life cycles.
Extension: Encourage students to complete the Life Cycles activity individually.

With older students:

  • Display and discuss examples of animal life cycles, such as the Butterfly Life Cycle, the Life Cycle of the Pacific Salmon, the Frogs life cycle, or the Life Cycle of the Boreal Toad.
  • Organize students into five groups and assign each group one of the following categories of animals: fish, mammal, bird, amphibian, insect.
  • Ask each student to research print or online resources about one animal in the assigned category and create a labeled and illustrated diagram of that animal's life cycle.
Extension: Invite older students to complete the Animals: Life Cycle Crossword from the New York Times Learning Network.


Evaluate students on the accuracy, completeness, and appearance of their life cycle diagrams.

Lesson Plan Source

Education World

Submitted By

Linda Starr

National Standards


Originally published 05/21/2001
Links last updated 07/23/2004