To celebrate International Polar Bear Day February 27, 2014 in my preschool classroom we are reading books about polar bears, sharing a marshmallow bear snack, and making a polar bear craft. The day is a great opportunity to teach about the fascinating bear.
We have visited polar bears at many different zoos and see the resident bear at SeaWorld San Diego frequently. My daughter has learned so much about the bears and loves getting to climb through the polar bear cave at the Wild Arctic during our family visits to SeaWorld.
Visiting the polar bear during a family visit to SeaWorld San Diego February 2012
Polar bear kids craft supplies:
- (4) white index cards
- black crayon
- cotton ball
- glue stick
- safety scissors
Draw shapes onto the index cards for easy cutting. The polar bear craft needs three pieces cut from the index cards: back, front legs, and head.
Younger children may need your assistance but my preschool students were able to cut the pieces out by themselves using safety scissors.
Use the black crayon to draw a face and lines for paws. Glue the cotton ball tail to the back piece.
Cut the final index card in half and fold piece like an accordion.
Glue all the pieces together to complete the polar bear kids craft.
The four and five year old children in my preschool classroom had so much fun creating the polar bears together.
Polar Bear fun facts for the classroom:
- Polar bears are native to Alaska, Canada, Greenland, Norway, and Russia.
- Polar bears have black fur under their white fur.
- They are the largest carnivores on land.
- Male polar bears can weigh up to 1,500 pounds.
- Female polar bears are about half the size of males.
- Polar bears have 42 teeth.
- They have an excellent sense of smell and can detect a seal about one mile away.
- Polar bears can run up to 25 miles per hour on land and swim 6 miles per hour in water.
- In 2008, the United States listed polar bears as a threatened species.
- Sea ice losses in the Arctic due to climate changes are polar bears’ biggest threat.
- Polar bears depend on sea ice for hunting, breeding, and sometimes denning. With out sea ice, it is challenging for polar bears to find food for survival.
What can you do to make a difference for polar bear conservation? Raise your thermostat by two degrees or wear a sweater instead of lowering a thermostat to use less energy in your home. This can potentially help slow the rate of climate change.
How do you plan to celebrate International Polar Bear Day this year?