Classroom Travel Resources | Classroom Package

Amazin' Amazon Mystery Animals: Curriculum Connections

The Curriculum Connections pages provide activity suggestions, creative writing ideas, lists and worksheets which will help teachers to use the online adventure, Amazin' Amazon Mystery Animals (AAMA), most effectively in their classrooms and connect its content to various areas of the curriculum.

Below is an outline of the Curriculum Connections pages. Click on a section or scroll down to view all:

1. One-A-Day
2. Single Lesson Amazon Journey
3. One Week Amazon Animal Challenge
4. Poetry Awareness Scavenger Hunt
5. Rebel Poets
6. Writing Your Own Rain Forest Animal Poems
7. Animal Poem Web Site Project
8. Connecting Your Amazon Animal Expedition to the Curriculum
     a) Introduction

     b) Art
     c) Music
     d) Science
     e) Social Studies/Geography
9. Index of Concrete Poems

Three of the poems have their own separate Curriculum Connections pages: i) Sloth; ii) Blue Morpho Butterfly; and iii) Tapir.

1. One-A-Day

Throughout your rain forest unit, begin each day with an AAMA poem that is related to one of the day's main themes. Read and listen to the selected poem as a class. To ensure that all students are involved in the deciphering process, instruct students that they should not guess out loud, but rather should write down their guess when they think they've got the animal figured out. If you want to extend the activity a bit, have students also write down key clues that steered them to their conclusion. Once all of your students have written down their guesses, click forward to the photo. Once the mystery animal has been revealed, make a smooth transition into the day's theme.

If your classroom computer setup is such that you control the clicking when exploring the Internet, you may want to try a fun suspense-adding variation to this activity: wait until the end of the lesson to look at the photo and reveal the identity of the animal. If you choose to do this, after revealing the animal, ask students to explain how that animal applies to the theme of the lesson you just completed.

Tip: Plan ahead! Once you've got your unit plans made, go through AAMA before the unit begins so you can choose animals that match the daily themes best.

Curriculum Connections INDEX

2. Single Lesson Amazon Journey/One Week Amazon Animal Challenge

For a single lesson follow the guidelines below. For a week of daily lessons follow the guidelines below making the adjustments suggested in the last paragraph of this section.

If you only have time to do one lesson using AAMA, try this: Prechoose 7-10 poems that you feel best match your students reading and comprehension level (see tip and suggestion below). Introduce the lesson by telling students, 'Take out your boots and your binoculars because today we are going on an adventure to see Amazon rain forest animals.' Explain to students that the animals will magically appear in their imaginations - if they are good listeners and careful readers as they examine the poems. Tell them that their task is to focus in on the animals and identify them by deciphering the clues in the poems.

At this point, you may want to divide the class into teams. Instruct students to read and listen to the poems, then (discuss with their team-members if applicable and) write down their guesses. Each poem links forward to a photo of the animal OR to the next poem. Have students link to the next poem, skipping the photos at first until they have completed and made a guess for all the poems. When they have finished the sleuthing have them go through again and link to the photos to see if they made accurate guesses.

Optionally, you may want to make the lesson some sort of contest, providing you allow an opportunity for each student to 'win' in a way. For example, if they complete the AAMA adventure, they win an animal sticker - or if they guess more than half of the animals correctly, they get to put their names on a list of 'Successful Safari Sleuths.' To encourage thoughtful guessing, you may also have students jot down the clues that led them to make a particular guess after they read a poem.

Suggestion: Regardless of your grade level, mix up the poems to cover a range of comprehension levels. Students whose comprehension level is lower than that of most other students in your class will benefit when you include a poem or two that is not as mind-boggling - since it will give them an opportunity to contribute and even 'get something right,' and it will give them a reason to stay tuned in. A more challenging poem on the other hand will equally engage the few students in your class whose comprehension level is above that of the rest. Besides, both the easy poems and the more challenging ones are FUN!

A good strategy for engaging ALL of your students when using a challenging poem is to claim that you are going to try to stump them. If they are like most students, this will make them rise to the challenge of being excellent listeners and careful readers. When that happens, even students you might not expect to respond will connect a word or phrase from the poem to the correct animal and surprise you with his or her brilliance!

Curriculum Connections INDEX

3. One Week Amazon Animal Challenge

To extend your AAMA adventure over the course of a week, simply follow the same guidelines as above, but have students complete only four or five animals per day. Also, have students read the factual paragraphs that appear under the photos on the answer pages. At the end of the week, give your students a quiz, - for fun (in the form of a game, perhaps, or for a grade depending on your purposes). Use lines from the poems and have them identify the speakers, test them for factual knowledge about the animals gained, see if they can recall parts of the plots from the story poems or the concrete shapes of some of the poems. Or, have them write an essay about their favorite animal - or a critique about their favorite poem, complete with their own illustrations. If their interaction with the poems is engaging and fun, they'll retain a surprising amount of the information on the site and be inspired to express themselves creatively.

Curriculum Connections INDEX

4. Poetry Awareness Scavenger Hunt

AAMA provides an excellent context in which to teach a poetry writing unit (see Connecting Your Amazon Animal Expedition to the Curriculum: Introduction). Before taking your students on the AAMA adventure, explain to them that poets use the following poetry writing strategies: repeating, comparing, drawing, inventing and breaking the rules. (Add any others that you would like to emphasize.)

Poets repeat letters, sounds (alliteration), syllable sounds (rhyming), words, phrases, lines, refrains, lengths of lines, word patterns, grammatical forms, etc. - all to create a rhythm and a pleasing sound. They compare the things they are writing about to other things, sometimes using the words 'like' or 'as' (similes), sometimes not (metaphors). Sometimes their comparisons extend throughout a poem (extended metaphor). Poets also choose descriptive words to draw images (imagery) in the minds of their readers. In creating their poems, poets sometimes invent spellings, sound effects, new words, and interesting ways to combine words and put them on the page. In the process of inventing, poets sometimes break the regular rules of writing, which, while very important normally, may not apply in poetry. (You can write words upside down if it fits the context of a poem - but don't try that in an essay!)

Divide your class into teams. On the board, make a list of symbols that represent the different strategies/techniques that you discussed. (Have your students help you to come up with the symbols if you have time.) Make a list of the animals, calling them 'Mystery Animal #1, Mystery Animal #2, etc.) When your students are familiar with the strategies and the symbol system you are using, tell them that you are going to go on a hunting adventure to the Amazon rain forest. You will be hunting for the poetry writing strategies/techniques as you read/listen to the poems and identify the animals. Each time students locate a strategy in a poem, they should put the appropriate symbol next to the respective mystery animal on the list. Of course, they should also write the name of the animal once they figure it out. When they are telling their hunting stories (reporting about which strategies they found), they should be prepared to back up their boasting with proof, that is, point to a specific example of the strategy in the given poem.

Tip: You may want to go through the poems once for identifying the animals and then again for the strategy scavenger hunt.

Note: Rhyming is not listed specifically as a strategy above because it is included under repeating. You may want to add it to your list if it is something you are stressing in your unit. In fact, you may want to add a rhyme scheme component to the scavenger hunt. In this case, discuss different rhyme schemes, create symbols for them and try to locate them in the poems. If you are stressing rhyming as a strategy, you should also stress that poems don't always have to rhyme, as some of the AAMA poems do not.

Curriculum Connections INDEX

5. Rebel Poets

Oddly, and for reasons forever being examined by sociologists and psychologists, there is an innate human drive to BREAK THE RULES. When teaching poetry, you have an excellent opportunity to tap into this drive within your students and channel it into a constructive and creative educational activity. Furthermore, if you are sneaky enough, you can even get your students to understand the purposes behind rules and, thus, make them better writers - and maybe even better citizens!

Try this: Write a short paragraph on the board (or put it on paper and make copies), but do not capitalize or punctuate the sentences. Write some of the words upside down and some of the lines diagonally or vertically. Badly misspell some of the words or spell them backwards, and put some word combinations in an illogical order. Tell your students you would like them to read and summarize the paragraph. Allow them a few minutes to try to figure it out, then take responses, allow them to discuss and debate the content for a minute or two. They might be able to report the general idea of the paragraph and some of the details (depending on how mixed up you made it) but it will take them a lot longer than normal to glean the meaning and the overall picture will be a muddled one at best.

Ask your students what you could do to make the meaning of the paragraph crystal clear and immediately understandable. Taking one part of the paragraph at a time and guiding them to the correct conclusions by playing devil's advocate ('Oh, you can understand what I mean when I write happy as 'yppah,' can't you?' 'I don't need to make a pause after this word, do I?'), use their suggestions to straighten out the paragraph, fix the spelling errors, insert the proper punctuation, etc. Then, ask your students do create a set of rules that would help a writer to avoid writing such a garbled mess of words and letters. Again, guide them to the rules you would like to emphasize ('What rule could we make the writer follow so the reader will always know when one sentence ends and the next one begins?' etc.)

Ideally, your students will tell you the rules of writing - instead of you telling them - and they'll understand why those rules exist in the first place and possibly be more inclined to use them.

Tip: You could do this activity on several different occasions, emphasizing particular rules each time by fashioning your paragraph to highlight them.

Still, your students will have that normal human drive to BREAK THE RULES. So, let them write poetry! Before you actually begin the writing, though, tell your students, 'In poetry, you may break any writing rule you choose as long as your breaking of that rule ENHANCES your poem.' This is the golden rule of poetic rule-breaking: only purposeful rebelliousness allowed. To reinforce this concept, examine AAMA poems for rule-breaking.

Punctuation use, also, in most of the AAMA poems does not always follow conventional rules. Have students identify when it does and when it doesn't in particular poems and posit theories for why the deviations from the norm are OK. (Ask them, for example: If a line doesn't end in a period, what tells the reader when the line ends and the next one begins? What can a poet do to introduce a pause without using a comma? etc.) For each poem you examine, have your students pinpoint incidences of rule-breaking that would not be appropriate in an essay, say, or a report; and, for each example, challenge them to explain how the rule-breaking enhances the poem. When it's time to do their own poetry writing, your students will enjoy the opportunity to break the rules in their poems - and thus produce more creative and interesting poetry. But the golden rule behind their freedom (no haphazard rule-breaking) will encourage them to write with purpose and consider the need of the reader to quickly and clearly comprehend - and to enjoy the written words.

Tip: Another way to teach the concept of purposeful breaking of the rules in poetry, especially with younger students is to encourage them to 'play with the words:'

Make them twist and turn, run and jump
Make them bounce and wiggle and wobble and bump
Make them shout and make them sing
Make them whisper and make them ring.

Poetry writing should be FUN!

Curriculum Connections INDEX

6. Writing Your Own Rain Forest Animal Poems

After your class has taken the AAMA adventure, it's the perfect time for your students to write their own rain forest animal poems. They'll have absorbed knowledge of a variety of poetry writing strategies, they'll be familiar with the animals and they'll be enthusiastic about trying to stump each other by camouflaging animals in the words of a poem and trying to uncover the clues of their classmates.

(Modify the following procedure according to the time you would like to spend on the project.) Besides going on the AAMA online adventure itself, three good preparation activities for safari poem writing are explained on the Poetry Awareness Scavenger Hunt, Connecting Your Amazon Animal Expedition to the Curriculum: Science and Rebel Poets sections. If you have completed the activity under Connecting Your Amazon Animal Expedition to the Curriculum: Science, you will already have divided your class into teams and assigned an animal to each team. Your students will have researched their animals and will be quite familiar with them.

Step one in the writing process is to brainstorm. But, even before that, encourage your students to clear their minds, focus and visualize. Have them picture in their imaginations the animal in its natural environment. Ask them questions to help them fill in the details: What color is your animal? What shape are its ears? What movements is it making? What plants and other objects are close by? etc. Then, as a group, have each team brainstorm out loud, assigning one member of the group to be the 'secretary' and write down of the suggested words.

At this point the objective is to get all the words (or phrases, but not complete sentences or poem lines) associated with the image of the animal in the students' minds onto paper. The words should range from specific and descriptive to tangential and abstract. Value judgments and choices about which words to include in the poem should not be made yet - that will occur later. As you did when your students were visualizing, prompt them so they can get as many words as possible, encouraging them to consider such things as physical characteristics, environmental surroundings, everyday activities and movements, food, pop culture images of the animal (i.e. advertising, mascots, TV portrayals, cartoons, etc.).Limit the brainstorming time if necessary.

After the first stage of brainstorming, have your students consider sounds that their animal makes, not just with its voice but when it moves, etc. Also, have them consider what the animal might say (under different circumstances - hunting, being hunted, eating, lounging, etc.) if they could speak. Have students add some of these ideas to their list of words and phrases.

Next, have students identify physical characteristics of their animal that they have listed. If they haven't already written them, have them add descriptive words that describe each physical characteristic. Then, have them list things that they might compare each of the physical characteristics listed to (for example, a jaguar's tooth to a knife; an anteater's tongue to flypaper, etc.).

Next, ask them what they might compare the animal itself to. What about when it's eating, running, sleeping, etc. Have them list these comparisons. Next, ask students if they see any words on their list that they would rank higher than all the others when considering this animal. Have them circle these words. Also have them circle the words that describe the sounds of the animal. These circled words might be good words to repeat in the poem.

Finally, have students underline words in their list that are easy to rhyme. Have them write rhyming words that might fit in the context of the poem next to these words. Explain to students that a trick to make rhymes is to rearrange the words of a line or rephrase the words of a line to get the easy rhyming words at the end. For example if your students create a line like 'At night, I chow down on peccaries' and are having trouble rhyming it, have them consider ways they might change it. 'I chow down on peccaries at night' or 'At night, I chow down on my prey,' or 'I chow down peccaries after dark' are just a few of the possibilities.

OK, now your students have all the building blocks they need, so remind them of the poetry writing strategies (see Poetry Awareness Scavenger Hunt) and let them start constructing their poems. Remind them that they don't need to use all of the building blocks: now is the time to pick and choose the ones they feel will best 'flesh out' their animal. If they choose a particular point of view or a specific theme to focus on, they may end up not using the majority of the words, comparisons etc. they produced in brainstorming - which is perfectly fine.

Students should play with the words, twisting them, repeating them and combining them in interesting and purposeful ways. Once they've written the poems, have them consider ways they will put the words on the page. Have students share their poems, challenging their classmates to guess the correct answers. Then, have them illustrate their poems or write them inside drawings of the animals and display them for the rest of the school. Or, if you want to go the whole nine yards, make your very own AAMA Web site with them (see Animal Poem Web Site Project).

Tip: Don't hesitate to assign the same animals that are in AAMA. Each of your students could write a poem about just one animal and each poem would be unique. If you do use the same animals, though, encourage your students to make original poems by mixing up the strategies, researching new factual information about the animals, considering different comparisons and putting the words on the page in original ways.

Curriculum Connections INDEX

7. Animal Poem Web Site Project

After writing and illustrating their own poems, your students are just a few steps away from creating their very own AAMA Web site - just like this one. Scan the illustrations, type in the text of the poems, and check with your Computer/Technology teacher for suggestions about what software to use when making the site (this site was made with Netscape Composer, for example). If you have RealPublisher and RealPlayer (or other means to capture and play sound) on your computers, and your server supports sound, you may also be able to have an audio component of your site. Use this AAMA as a model for the layout of your AAMA site, putting student illustrations instead of photos on the answer pages -- or linking forward to other Web pages that have photos of the animals.

Curriculum Connections INDEX

8. A) Connecting Your Amazon Animal Expedition to the Curriculum: Introduction

Before you begin your poetry unit, ask your students, "How are poets like artists, musicians, scientists, architects, storytellers and troublemakers?" If they have responses, great; if they don't, let it go - for the time being. Then, at the end of your unit, ask students again. Hopefully, if you and your material reached them, they will have a lot more to say.

Poets are artists: they draw pictures - not with pencils and paint, but with words and phrases, and not on paper or canvas, but in the imaginative minds of those who read their poems. (See Connecting Your Amazon Animal Expedition to the Curriculum: Art for art related activities.)

Poets are musicians, too. By repeating patterns of sound (as in rhyme, alliteration, regulation of line length, the use of refrains, and the repetition of words or kinds of words) they create rhythm; and by fashioning the sequence of the words on the page into lines and stanzas, punctuated to control the way they are read, the poet also dictates the tempo, which, along with the meanings and sounds of the specific words chosen - onomatopoeic words, colorful and descriptive words, and words that elicit emotion - and their context, determine the tone and the mood - all components of music. (See Connecting Your Amazon Animal Expedition to the Curriculum: Music for music related activities.)

Poets are like scientists because, especially when they are writing about things in nature, like animals, they have to do a lot of research so they know the ins and the outs - and the facts - of their subjects. When writing poems about animals, a little biology can go a long way. (See Connecting Your Amazon Animal Expedition to the Curriculum: Science for science related activities.)

Poets are architects because they take a variety of building materials (different kinds of words), then carefully choose and manipulate them into repeating and pleasing patterns and construct original - and sometimes remarkable - works of art. See Writing Your Own Rain Forest Animal Poems for an activity in which students gather their building blocks, then construct poems from them.

Poets can also be storytellers if they choose to tell stories in their poems. When they do, they incorporate into their poems the various literary techniques and conventions found in fiction: setting, character development, dialogue, plot, conflict, tension, resolution, etc.

Finally poets are like troublemakers because they often break the rules. In most writing, rules are very important. Capitalizing letters, punctuating and spelling correctly, writing right side up and from write to left, and dividing ideas and topics into phrases, sentences and paragraphs all help the reader to make sense of what is on the page. But, in poetry, the rules can be bent to fit a particular poem. Spellings can be warped for humor or effect, words can be stretched, sound effects and images inserted, shapes created by placing the words on the page in different ways and punctuation ignored, modified or used as a device other than its normal usage. That is not to say that poetry writing has no rules; after all, the poems must be readable and coherent. But, in poetry, the normal rules can be manipulated right along with the words. (See Rebel Poets for related activities).

Curriculum Connections INDEX

B) Connecting Your Amazon Animal Expedition to the Curriculum: Art


Poetry can easily be connected to art since both rely heavily on imagery. Poets use descriptive words and comparisons to draw pictures in the minds of their readers just as artist use pencils and paint to draw pictures on paper. Sometimes poets also enhance the visual impact of a poem by cleverly placing the words on the page to represent an image - again just as artist do with their chosen medium of expression.

Drawing Pictures

Imagery is a key component in many of the AAMA poems, either drawing a picture of the animal itself or a scene or event that the animal is involved in. Take a look at the following poems: Party Animal #1, Silent Thunder, Duty Bound Troops, Charming Fellow, Today's Specialty is ... You! and Tree Beeper. The words of the poems draw pictures in the minds of the readers. Parse up the poems and ask students what they see in their minds when they read each line. Have students draw some of these images (separate from drawing the animal itself). These images should be fun and imaginative, and as tangential as your students' imaginations allow, but they should also help students to determine which animal the poem is about. For fun, have them create new creatures by combining some of the images they have drawn. Note and discuss how similar to or how different from the actual animals these concoctions are. This exercise might even lead to a discussion of biological/survival functions of various animal parts.


Another key component of AAMA poems which enhances their imagery, other than specific descriptive and action words, are comparisons (similes and metaphors). Look at Web Swinger, Blue Moon Shining Through the Trees, House in a House in a House, Flower on Flower and Caustic Candy. Again, have students identify the comparisons in these poems and discuss how they enhance the imagery. Have them draw pictures of the things that the animals or animal parts are compared to, juxtaposing them against drawings of the actual animals (for example, draw a flower next to a butterfly, a poison dart frog next to a piece of candy). Have students draw fictitious creatures by drawing literally the metaphors and similes in the poems. Compare these creatures to a picture of an actual animal. This activity should be a lot of fun, but will also reinforce understanding of an important poetic and artistic device.

Related Creative Writing Idea: Have students identify specifically which words in the poems create images in their minds. (What kinds of words are these?) Have students choose an animal they like, then have them list words or phrases that produce images associated with the physical or behavioral characteristics of that animal. They can use their list to write a report, a poem or a creative story telling how the animal got its parts or why it behaves the way it does. The more creative their imagery is, the more creative their writing will be.

Comparison enriches the imagery of Reduced to Mush, too. Have students do a 'comparison scavenger hunt.' Discuss each comparison and the images it elicits. How do the comparisons add to the tone? How do they help to draw of mental picture of the actual animal?

Concrete Poems

Concrete poems are poems that convey an image (or images) through the placement of the words on the page. The image may represent the subject itself, a physical characteristic of the subject or any other image or concept that might be associated with the subject. Using the Index of Concrete Poems, examine a number of the poems on the site which convey an image or images by the way the words appear on the page. Focusing on specific poems, discuss with students other ways the poet might have put the words on the page to convey a different image associated with the animal or the theme of a poem.

Next, look at some of the poems on the site that are not concrete poems and discuss with students how the author might have turned them into concrete poems. Make sure students consider the practical implications of applying their ideas: i.e. 'Would there be enough room on the page?' 'How big or small would I have to make the letters?' 'Would the poem be readable?'


All of the poems on this site also use color to convey a hint of imagery. Visit these poems and ask students to consider why certain colors were used. Haiku Horror, for example, is orangish with black spots. Any clue which animal it might be? Again, discuss what other colors might have been used effectively in these poems.

Curriculum Connections INDEX

C. Connecting Your Amazon Animal Expedition to the Curriculum: Music

Poets are musicians without music since they often create a musical effect in their poems. By repeating patterns of sound (as in rhyme, alliteration, regulation of line length, the use of refrains, and the repetition of words or kinds of words) they create rhythm; and by fashioning the sequence of the words on the page into lines and stanzas, punctuated to control the way they are read, they also dictate the tempo, which, along with the meanings and sounds of the specific words chosen - onomatopoeic words, colorful and descriptive words, and words that elicit emotion - and their context, determine the tone and the mood - all components of music.

Language Arts/Music Connection: Have students tap a quick one-two-three-four beat and challenge them to read poems like Caustic Candy, Tree Beeper, Duty Bound Troops, Home Sweet Hairy Home and House in a House in a House to the beat. The poems are designed to be read as such and can easily be rapped or changed into a song. Why? Because repetition is a key element - giving the poems its steady rhythm. Have students read through the poems again - this time going on a 'repetition scavenger hunt.' Have them identify as many instances of repetition in the poems as possible. Some are: end rhymes (point out to students that rhyming is a kind of repetition; ask them what is being repeated in rhyming words), internal rhymes, line length, stanza length, words, kinds of words (synonym-adjectives), phrases and alliteration.

Alliteration is the repetition of letter sounds in a line or series of lines. Try alliteration 'scavenger hunts' in Peculiar Pet, Tree Beeper, Web Swinger and Blue Moon Shining Through the Trees.

Curriculum Connections INDEX

D. Connecting Your Amazon Animal Expedition to the Curriculum: Science

Here's a fun activity you can do after your class has gone on AAMA and before they write their own safari animal poems. Divide your students into teams and assign each team an animal. Their job: to research the animals for scientific information, fascinating statistics and fun facts. Use library books, the Internet, encyclopedias and other classroom resources. Have them make a list of ten items from the information they gather and make a chart or a report. The list can also make a good starting point for writing their own animal poems (see Writing Your Own Rain Forest Animal Poems).

Science Connection: When studying animals, it is fun to look at traditional stories about why the animals look or behave the way they do. It's even more fun to make up such stories. For an advanced activity, you can even change your stories into poems. When reading or writing 'Just So' or 'How/Why' stories/poems, take the opportunity to compare fact and fiction, myth and science. What are the scientific/survival functions of the characteristics and behaviors of the animals featured in the how/why stories? What is the scientific explanation of how the animals got the way they are?

Science/Language Arts Connection: Science and, therefore, the English language are filled with nouns that categorize animals and adjectives that describe characteristics of groups of animals. Here are just a few: avian, bovine, canine, equine, feline, primate, fowl, swine, ungulate, nocturnal, diurnal, omnivore, carnivore, herbivore, insectivore, rodent, ophidian, edentate, annelid, piscine, lanate, and marsupial. Which of these do your students recognize? Working in small groups, have them research the rest, reporting their findings to the rest of the class and siting specific examples.

Many of the words we typically use when referring to a specific animal are actually words that refer to a whole group of animals rather than a species or a breed. Everyday examples are dog, cat, horse, cow, antelope, sloth, armadillo, parrot, toucan, and snake. To make students more aware of the richness of their language and to work on the skill of categorizing, have students choose a commonly used animal name and research breeds or species of that kind of animal, again reporting the results to the rest of the class.

Science/Language Arts Connection II: Haiku poetry often paints a descriptive picture of a natural event, so it's a perfect way to combine language arts and science. Although, there are only eleven words in the poem, Haiku Horror, they highlight the most haunting characteristics of the jaguar as it stalks its prey in the night. Though brief, the descriptive haiku poem draws a picture in the readers mind. Have students research an animal, pick two or three key qualities/characteristics of that animal, then write a haiku poem that draws a picture highlighting the qualities/characteristics chosen. Try the same with other natural phenomena: after researching, have students manipulate associated descriptive words into a haiku formula (in this case, a 5-7-5 syllable pattern).

Curriculum Connections INDEX

E. Connecting Your Amazon Animal Expedition to the Curriculum: Social Studies/Geography

Before you take your class on AAMA, take out the globe or the map and take a quick tour of South America, identifying the Andes Mountains, the Caribbean Sea, the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans, the Amazon River system, the Amazon forest and the countries that contain part of the Amazon. Have students locate the equator and predict the climate of the region. Be careful - it's not all hot and sticky like in the rain forest. Some peaks in the Andes have snow on them all year round.

To learn more about the culture and lifestyle of children living in the Amazon rain forest, see Children of the Amazon.

Curriculum Connections INDEX

9. Index of Concrete Poems

Concrete poems are poems that convey an image (or images) through the placement of the words on the page. The image may represent the subject itself, a physical characteristic of the subject or any other image or concept that might be associated with the subject. The following is a list of links to the concrete poems on the AAMA adventure site with a brief description of the image(s) depicted by each:

1. Peculiar Pet (Iguana) - Words form shape of iguana as if climbing vertically on a tree trunk.
2. Web Swinger (Spider Monkey) - Words swing across page, then up and down in lines. When referring to the spider monkey's 'web,' words form the shape of a tree.
3. Home Sweet Hairy Home (Sloth) - Words form shape of sloth hanging upside-down from tree.
4. Silent Thunder (Army Ant) - Scattered letters represent swarm of army ants.
5. Blue Moon Shining Through the Trees (Blue Morpho Butterfly) - Stanzas flutter from one side of the page to the other mimicking morpho's 'flash and dazzle' flying pattern.
6. Happy to Be Me (Tapir) - One line in each of the first three stanzas juts out -- just the part of the part of its face the tapir is ashamed of in the poem.
7. House in a House in a House (Amazon River Turtle) - Words form shape of turtle.

Curriculum Connections INDEX


Classroom Travel Resources | Classroom Package

© 2007 OneWorld Classrooms. All rights reserved.