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Mammals Book Workshop By Author

Mammals Book Workshop By Author
Website: Mammals Book Workshop By Author
Also does: STEM
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Pictish Beast Publications offers specific workshops for schools along three separate themes related to the books we publish. However, our most popular workshops are base around our new ‘Draw Your Own Encyclopaedia’ series. These are fact-based books which provide an introduction to a range of areas related to a specific topic, along with quick facts, questions to be answered, and a pop quiz at the end for the reader to test the knowledge they have gained from reading the book. Uniquely, these books also provide space and prompts for the reader to add their own illustrations, which encourages them to retain the information presented to them within the book.

These ‘Draw Your Own Encyclopaedia’ workshops are run by Colin M. Drysdale (a research biologist, and the author of this series). They are suitable for classes ranging from Primary Two to Primary Seven, and are adapted to suit the specific age class present. The first of these workshops is based around the first book in the series (‘Draw Your Own Encyclopaedia Mammals’), and involves reading, comprehension, learning facts about mammals, drawing maths, and (weather permitting) out-door learning and physical exercise. This workshop is designed to be presented to single primary class, and a free copy of this book is provided for workshop participants.

The workshop will include the following activities:

1. An Introduction To Mammals: This involves asking the students to find the answer to a series of questions about mammals from specific pages in the book. These questions are: What are mammals? What is the largest living land mammal? What is the smallest mammals? What is the fastest mammal? What is the longest a mammal can hold its breath? and What is the largest mammal?

2. How To Put Information From Books Into A Wider Context: When reading facts from books, students often fail to realise what associated numbers mean. This is because they fail to put them into a wider context. To help the students learn how to do this the numbers associated with three specific facts from the book are put into a wider context by getting the students to compare them to their own body sizes and abilities. These three facts are: How tall is an African bush elephant (the largest land mammals), How big is a blue whale (the largest mammals) and How fast is a cheetah (the fastest mammal).

3. Activity 1: Can You Arrange Yourselves Into Groups That Are As Tall As An Elephant? In the introduction to mammals, the students will have learned that an African bush elephant is four metres (or four hundred centimetres) tall. To put this measurement into a wider context, they will be asked to arrange themselves into groups where the combined height is as close as possible to the height of an elephant. To do this, each child’s height must first be measured and written on a post-it note that they can stick to their chests. They can then see if they can arrange themselves into group of other students where their heights add up a close to four hundred centimetres as possible. To do this, they must use maths skills.

4. Activity 2: How Many Students Would It Take To Be As Long As A Blue Whale? Where possible, this activity will take place outside. The students will have already learned that blue whales can grow up to 30 metres long. They will be shown the length of a metre, and will then be asked to estimate how long thirty metres is. This will be done by walking away from a specific starting point until they think they are thirty metres from it. The distance will then be measured to see who is closest to being right, and then the students will be asked whether they think that their combined length is longer or shorter than a blue whale. Once they have provided an answer, they will test whether they are correct by lying down, head-to-toe, along the distance measured out to see if they are right. Next, the students will draw an outline of blue whale in chalk, and see whether the entire class could fit in a blue whale’s mouth. For older students, they will then go on to work out the area of a blue whale’s shadow (by breaking it into a number of rectangles and triangles). For the oldest students (and depending on their abilities), they will work out the volume (by breaking it into a number of cones and cylinders), and from that the weight of a blue whale.

5. Activity 3: What mammal can you run as fast as? The students will have already learned that the fastest mammal is the cheetah, and that it can run at 112 kilometres per hour. They will then be asked to estimate how long it would take a cheetah to run the length of a blue whale (older children will be asked to work this out for themselves based on the information provided). They will then return to the marked out length of a blue whale and they will see how fast they can run this distance. This can will then be compared to the speed of a cheetah, and also to a range of other mammals to see what mammal they are as fast as. This activity will end with the studens arranging themselves into a bar chart based on the mammal that they are closest to in terms of their speed.

6. The workshop will end with students being provided with the opportunity to ask the author any mammal-related questions they wish to ask.
Locations: West Lothian; West Dunbarton; North Ayrshire; Inverclyde; Lothian; Edinburgh; Argyll & Bute; Midlothian; North Lanarkshire; E. Dumbartonshire; Falkirk; Glasgow; East Ayrshire;
Postcode: G11 7EZ
Workshop Themes: Animals, writing, measuring, measurements, Maths, out-door learning, practical learning, STEM, Biology
Ages (Keystages): Ages 7-11 (KS2)
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