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Living Fossils

1 Class Session, 1.5 Hours

Reptiles have been around for quite a long time, some longer than others. Students will visit live animals in our nature center and learn about the fascinating adaptations of these modern-day animals that have allowed generations to survive over long periods of times.

What’s Covered

The class begins with a brainstorming session on how reptiles are perceived in popular culture and what myths the class might dispel. After learning about the adaptations, habits and physical needs of different reptiles, the class gets to meet and pet the Pali reptiles!

Lessons & Activities

Myths & Realities of Reptiles

Students brainstorm as many examples of reptiles from the media and pop culture as they can recall, reflecting on how these reptiles are typically portrayed and the accuracy of these generally evil archetypes. Just because they’re scaly doesn’t mean reptiles should be feared!

Reptile Biology & Adaptations

Students examine turtle shells, snakeskin and skeletons to begin to infer the biological adaptations that reptiles have inherited over time. As a class, students perform a Food, Water, Air, Reproduction, Protection and Space (FWARPS) analysis of reptiles, diving deeper into the specifics of key traits.

Meet the Animals!

Finally, students meet the Pali reptiles! Students have the opportunity to pet a turtle, tortoise, snakes and lizards!

Educational Standards

Applicable Common Core/Next Generation Standards:

  • NGSS MS-LS4-2 Apply scientific ideas to construct an explanation for the anatomical similarities and differences among modern organisms and between modern and fossil organisms to infer evolutionary relationships.

Ready to Get Started?

Accelerate your students’ learning with our exciting curriculum. Learn more about this hands-on, experiential education activity today.

Student pets lizard during Pali Institute reptile class
Raving Reviews

What People Are Saying

I loved my experience at Pali. In my time as an instructor, I was able to develop many skills in the classroom as a teacher and as a leader. I would highly recommend this position for anyone who would like to start a career in the Outdoor Education Industry.

Alicia G., Instructor

Thank you so much for an incredible week. The kids are jazzed; parents are more jazzed. Your team is incredible, and the planning and execution for a top notch science/outdoor education/leadership camp is celebrated. We are so glad we found you.

Danielle V., Teacher

Impressive! This is our first time to Pali. I have taken students to four other SoCal science camps and I would highly recommend Pali and plan to return next year.

Janice K., Educator

Source: Yelp