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NHMU: Adaptation Scavenger Hunt

Main Core Tie

Science - 4th Grade
Standard 5 Objective 2

Additional Core Ties

Science - 4th Grade
Standard 5 Objective 4

Time Frame

1 class periods of 30 minutes each

Group Size



Utah LessonPlans


Students will learn to recognize the specific adaptations of living things and relate them to survival within the animals environment.


  • Old magazines, newspapers or anything with pictures or drawings of animals that is expendable.
  • Glue
  • Scissors
  • Plain paper

Instructional Procedures

  • Ask students to bring in old magazines, newspapers, etc.
  • Students will search the periodicals for pictures or drawings of animals and cut them out.
  • Students will glue cut outs on the top of a piece of plain paper leaving room underneath for writing. One subject per paper.
  • Students will try to identify the subject's specific adaptations and write them below the picture along with why the student believes that adaptation is useful.
  • On the other side of the paper students will list the environments that the subject does not inhabit leaving space for a few lines of writing in between environments.
  • Student will try to imagine the subject in the new environment and write how the adaptations would be helpful or harmful in the new area.
Other ways to play:
  • Assign individual or groups of students to search periodicals for living things with specific adaptations- i.e.; find all the animals with an adaptation for hunting prey, find all the animals with adaptations for living at night, etc.
  • Assign students specific environments or biomes. Each will then search for all living things that are adapted to that environment- i.e.; find anything adapted to living in the desert, find anything adapted to life in the alpine biome, etc.


This lesson plan was developed by the Utah Museum of Natural History.

Created: 11/04/2004
Updated: 02/05/2018