Mother Opossum and Her Babies
Written by Jean C. Echols, Jaine Kopp,
Ellen Blinderman, and Kimi Hosoume
An endearing and under-appreciated nocturnal creatureand
North America's only indigenous marsupialthe opossum appeals
to the imaginations of many children.
In this series of fun, exploratory activities, young children
learn a lot about opossums and other marsupials, and about animal
behavior in general. Drama, role-playing, and art are interwoven
with science, math, and language arts as students make model
opossum pouches, create baby opossums with pipe-cleaner tails,
and sniff out and munch on opossum snacks. Throughout the unit,
children gain practice measuring, estimating, and counting,
and sum up their discoveries in a book of drawings and writings
The activities can be done in classrooms, day care centers,
or at home, and are meant for anyone who works with children.
Complete information on opossums is provided for adults, along
with lists of resources and children's literature. These creative
activities have been extensively tested by educators across
the country, and provide a wealth of meaningful and positive
This GEMS guide was developed by the PEACHES
NSTA Recommends Mother
Opossum and Her Babies
"This book is ideal for teachers of preK-2 students. Although
opossums may not often get a lot of airtime in a typical unit
about mammals, this interesting animal can be a great way to
integrate science with other curriculum areas. Such thematic
units provide meaningful learning, but can be difficult to design.
Teachers just entering the integration arena will find Mother
Opossum and Her Babies a great tool for learning how to
create a thematic unit of instruction. "
National Science Teachers Association Recommends
Comment on this GEMS unit.
Spanish Language Student Materials
What materials are needed to present this unit? See the full list.