Alligators are one of the few living creatures around today that have likely been around for as far back as prehistoric times. It’s no surprise that they are one of the top predators for this reason alone. When it comes to teaching kids about these toothy, gnarly reptiles, there are so many interesting lessons and activities that you can find. We have made the job of finding ideas simple by compiling a list of 20 activities to fill your students’ alligator knowledge banks!
1. Paper Foldable Alligator
You’ll want to download this template for students to create their own paper alligator. It’s a flexible, adorable, and fun craftivity to help kids remember all the cool information they learn about gators.
Learn More: Easy Peasy and Fun
2. Alligator Book Sampling
Challenge older students to read a book about alligators on their own by starting with a book sampling. Compile all of the alligator books you can find and give kids 1 minute to read a few pages. When the time is up, have them pass the book to the next person. When they are done, they can choose which book they’d like to read during your alligator unit.
Learn More: Amazon
3. Build Background Knowledge
This alligator facts sheet is the perfect printable to have on your students’ desks when they arrive at school. They can read while waiting for others to arrive and settle in. For students who know little about wild alligators, this resource is perfect for introducing them to the topic.
Learn More: Tim’s Printables
4. Counting Alligators
Primary-aged children will benefit from this alligator counting activity. They will use a spinner and count alligators (pictures or toys).
Learn More: Living Montessori Now
5. What Makes a Good Home for Gators?
What makes a good home for gators? Kids will answer this question by watching Katelyn and Blake, students themselves, who investigate in Mississippi. This video from PBS helps children understand alligator habitats.
Learn More: PBS Learning Media
6. Gatorland Field Trip
Lucky enough to live in Florida? Take kids on a field trip to Gatorland! Here, students can get up close and personal with gators and learn everything they’ve ever wanted to know. Don’t live in Florida? There are plenty of other gator sanctuaries located around the country just waiting to be discovered.
Learn More: Gatorland
7. Webcam Watching
The Anhinga Trail Webcam captures footage from the Florida Everglades and is one way to experience the alligator’s natural habitat without having to go! Make this a daily check-in with your class to see what has changed and challenge them to spot any lurking reptiles.
Learn More: National Park Service
8. Alligator Facts
Students ages 8-12 will enjoy this printable alligator facts sheet which is meant to help them learn and review information about these reptiles. This would be a perfect station activity that kids can complete on their own. It includes a reading, a printable, and a quiz.
Learn More: Study.com
9. Alligator Fact Booklet
Help little ones learn simple ideas about these complex creatures using this printable fact booklet. This activity includes alligator-themed writing paper to record and draw the facts they’ve learned, and some other crafts to round out the lesson.
Learn More: Teachers Pay Teachers
10. Writing Task
After reading the clever and popular story, If You Ever Want to Bring an Alligator to School, DON’T! your students will engage in writing an opinion text. The included prompt and directions will help them come up with some extremely creative essays and have a whole lot of laughs in class!
Learn More: Teachers Pay Teachers
11. Alligator/Crocodile Patterns
This activity would be perfect for an art lesson! Students will receive this blank alligator template. After learning how to create a few different patterns, students will get to work making their own pattern-filled alligators.
Learn More: Scholastic
12. Cross the River
Little ones will help the alligator cross the river by completing simple computations. This is a great way to sneak in some alligator-themed activities and give your students all the necessary practice with different math skills.
Learn More: Scholastic
13. Create an Alligator Nest
After learning how alligators create their nests, create your own nest using plastic eggs, soil, small alligator trinkets, and facts. Students will dig the eggs out, record their findings, and understand how alligators nest in the process.
Learn More: Six 5 Mom
14. Printable Activity Booklet
The Florida Department of Agriculture presents this activity book filled with interesting alligator facts, puzzles, and pictures for students to keep. This would be a great resource for early finishers to work on in between tasks when they get done with their work.
Learn More: Florida Department of Agriculture
15. Alligator Alley
This is a great lesson to help kids understand their impact on this scaly keystone creature. Students will brainstorm the variety of ways humans negatively or positively impact the species and then work together to create a poster of an alligator.
Learn More: Crayola
16. Artsy Alligator
Help kids create this adorable crafty gator. Some simple supplies like dyed rice, tongue depressors, and pipe cleaners create cute toothy crocs that kids will love.
Learn More: The Mailbox
17. Habitat Diorama
After learning about their habitats, students can get creative and make an old-fashioned diorama. This helps kids further reinforce what they’ve learned and helps them express their creativity.
Learn More: Pinterest
18. How Many Alligators Can You See?
This is like a real game of eye-spy! Blow up this photo on your screen and have kids count how many gators they can spot! This is a great lesson opener, provides good counting practice, and also serves as a conversation starter about alligator behavior.
Learn More: The Educators’ Spin on It
19. Alligator Writing
This news article tells students about an alligator who became an emotional support animal. Students will read the article, answer questions, and then have the opportunity to express their own opinions about the contents of the article.
Learn More: One-Stop English
20. Long-Term Investigation
Use these “growing” alligators during science to help students learn to track and record data. Using multiple types of liquids, kids can create a hypothesis about which alligator will grow the largest over a set period of time.
Learn More: Teacher Source