We discovered that education is not something which the teacher does, but that it is a natural process which develops spontaneously in the human being.
— Maria Montessori

Animal Footprints Printable and Salt Dough Prints (Printable)

Animals and Their Footprints

As you can see in the November curriculum (HERE), I wanted to focus on animals and numbers this month.

We've done a few things in the past, and I want to expand on animals this month. One thing I wanted to make is animal prints. I was hoping Alexander could help, but he mostly just made a mess. So I ended up making the salt dough prints myself. (Here is how you can make salt dough yourself.)

I made one batch of dough and picked a few footprints that were different enough from each other. Also, since I just used my fingers to make the prints, it was difficult making small indents (like for tiny fingernails). I also wanted them to be somewhat relative to each other in size. Like, a bear's footprint is much larger than a squirrel's. They aren't perfect because I'm not entirely sure how large a bear's paw is in real life! I just used my best judgment and made the ones you see below.

  • Squirrel
  • Deer
  • Bear
  • Mountain lion
  • Raccoon

Salt Dough Animal Prints

These prints sat on the kitchen counter for about a week before I came up with an idea for how to use them.

I decided to make a set of flash cards. One set would be the 5 animals, and the second set would be images of the actual prints in the wild. I considered making black and white prints (like a clip-art sort of thing) but decided it would be more interesting if they were actual, real-world footprints. That way, if we see deer, raccoon, or squirrel prints in our neighborhood, we can identify them. (I don't expect to see mountain lion or bear prints any time soon! We could use the mountain lion print to look for cat footprints in our neighborhood, though.)



Anyway, the document that's below is two pages. The first page is the 5 animals. The second page is the 5 real-world footprints. The footprints are slightly smaller, so if you wanted, you could leave the first page intact and cut the second page into cards. And the footprint cards should fit on top of the animal sheet. Hopefully that makes sense.

Use them however you'd like!

You can use the printable without making the salt dough prints, which was my intention. I wanted to be sure I shared ideas here that can be used as is OR expanded a little.

HERE is the free printable of the animals + animal prints.

Pine Nuts in Play Doh (VIDEO)

November 2015 Curriculum