Asian Elephants, Adaptations Help Them Survive

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Identify at least three adaptations of the Asian Elephant that helps it survive in its habitat.

Big Idea

A combination of behaviors and structures, instead of any single characteristic, enables an animal to survive in a particular habitat.


1 minutes

Warm up

10 minutes

After our  lesson on African elephants, my students were looking forward to learning about Asian elephants. I decided to show the final four minutes of the movie from IFAW ( International Fund For Animal Welfare),Elephants Never Forget. The students had watched the first fifteen minutes which focused on elephants in general, with an emphasis on the African Elephant, during the previous lesson. and now they watched the last four minutes. I felt that this helped my students to connect to the previous lesson and gave the students insight to the devastating decline of the Asian elephant. 


Guided practice

15 minutes

 I created the Asian Elephant Adaptations PowerPoint to help reach the different learning styles in my classroom, and help convey this content in a way that my students could relate to visually and through academic vocabulary. As in the previous lesson, we concentrated on the adaptations that are readily apparent on the Asian Elephant. My student's fascination with the ears of the elephant was still evident, they were struck by how much smaller these ears were, which led us to a discussion about environment and habitat. The students also discussed elephant's trunk, and  their skin. We read bout how the wrinkles help keep them cool by trapping water in the folds.


20 minutes

I created an Asian Elephant Focus Page where the students drew, as well as labeled structural adaptations and a behavioral adaptation. The students also explained why that adaptation  the Asian elephant survive in its environment. Having a focus page as a graphic organizer, helped guide my students through the information and allowed them to focus on the information they felt was most essential. It was especially helpful to the students not reading at grade level, and the ELL population, because it helped scaffold the information. This is an example of a Completed Asian elephant focus page.

Class Discussion/Wrap Up

10 minutes

 I find that using a modified round table format as my exit ticket, helped me gauge how well the students understood the content and whether I need to revisit and clarify any portion of the content. I asked the question, "What adaptations helps the Asian Elephant survive?". I then gave each group of 4 , one pencil, one Round Table Discussions Asian Elephant Adaptation Question page, The group answered,  taking one minute per student, and each student in the group adds to, or contributes information that helps answer that question.