We are mammals. It is pretty weird that scientifically we can be grouped into a category with an armadillo or a platypus. Kids find that hilarious. Nonetheless, it is entirely accurate. Don’t miss out on these free printables to help your kids learn about mammals this homeschooling year. See what sets us apart from others in the animal kingdom.
This post is part of the Learning About Types of Animals Series
Ever wonder what makes up a mammal? Specifically, have you or your kids ever explored what makes a mammal, being that we are grouped with gorillas or dolphins? There are a few significant characteristics that are specific to mammals and are quite different from other animals like reptiles and insects.
The distinctive characteristics below classify how a mammal is different from other animals:
- Warm-blooded or endothermic – This means they can keep a constant body temperature no matter what the temperature of the environment.
- These animals breathe through the lungs.
- They have backbones – vertebrates.
- Mammals have mammary glands, which, of course, produce milk to nurse the young.
- Hair or fur on its body is a must. Some have very little, and some have A LOT.
Your kids will read about these descriptions and be able to guess a few mammals themselves. They may guess obvious mammals like cats, dogs, or even tigers. Those are great, and there are also some free printables below for those mammals.
However, don’t forget to teach them all about the funky mammals out there they may not know about or who don’t quite “look” like typical mammals (i.e. whales or dolphins). You may want to glance over this article of 7 of the World’s Weirdest & Most Unusual Mammal Wonders to find out more.
A few of the weirdest or most unusual mammals include the following:
Mammals are also divided into three different types depending on how they take care of their babies and how they give birth. The three types are live young, marsupials, and egg-laying mammals.
Live young types give birth to live “young,” called placental mammals.
Marsupials carry their “babies” in a pouch, like kangaroos, koalas, or opossum.
Egg-laying animals lay eggs, of course. They are called monotremes, and some include platypus and the anteater. By the way, I had no idea anteaters laid eggs. Did you?!
Here is the best thing about mammals. They are uniquely smart, not to toot our own horn but “toot, toot.” We are exceptionally intelligent compared to other species. There is so much more to learn about mammals. These printables will help you teach your kids about them.
Grab these FREE printables to help your kids learn about mammals:
FREE Blue Ocean Mammals | The Hungry Jpeg
Mammal Characteristics FREE | The WOLFe PACK
MAMMALS UNIT 2 W/ FREE PRINTABLES | Every Star is Different
FREE Small Mammals Montessori Inspired 3 Part Cards | Something2Offer
Mammal and Reptile Sorting Free File Folder Game | From ABC to Acts
Animal Word Search: Mammals | Education.com
Mammal Word Search | Monster Word Search
Specific Mammals FREE Printables
Monkey Free Printables for Preschoolers | Homeschool Preschool
Elephant Matching Game | Simple Fun for Kids
FREE Easy Elephant Origami Printables | One Colorful Day
Sea Otter Paper Bag Puppet Craft with Free Template | Buggy and Buddy
FREE POLAR BEAR PAW WRITING PROMPT: POLAR BEAR FACTS | The Classroom Creative
Color Matching Activity For Brown Bear Brown Bear, What Do You See? FREE PRINTABLE | No Time for Flashcards
Wolverine Free Printable Craft | Learn Creative Love
Free I Spy Game – Cats and Dogs | And Next Comes L
FREE CAT AND DOG BINGO KIDS GAME | The Inspiration Edit
Free Puzzle with Donkey | Supercoloring.com
Learning About Dolphins: ACTIVITIES FOR KIDS AND FREE PRINTABLE | A Little Pinch of Perfect
Free Traceable Alphabet Worksheets Gorilla | Olphreunion
BEAR BOOKS AND A CRAFT | A Blog from the Pond
How to Draw a Dolphin Step by Step for Kids + Printable | Easy Peasy and Fun
D FOR DONKEY CRAFT WITH PRINTABLE TEMPLATE | Artsy Craftsy Mom
What Makes a Mammal a Mammal? Free Worksheet | The Happy Housewife
Books about mammals:
Ultimate Explorer Field Guide: MammalsA Mammal is an AnimalPocket Genius: Mammals: Facts at Your FingertipsMammals (Animal Classifications)DK Eyewitness Books: MammalNational Geographic Kids Everything Dolphins: Dolphin Facts, Photos, and Fun that Will Make You FlipThe Animal Book: A Visual Encyclopedia of Life on Earth
These FREE printables to help your kids learn about mammals are great resources for you to use in your homeschool. Learning about mammals will be a fun unit for your kids, and YOU.
Your kids will enjoy learning how cheetahs can run as fast as 70 miles an hour, that camels have a straight spine despite their hump, or how a giraffe’s tongue is about 20 inches long. Have fun learning about mammals at home and maybe do a field trip to the zoo to see them in action.
Jeannette is a wife, mother and homeschooling mom. She has been mightily, saved by grace and is grateful for God’s sovereignty throughout her life’s journey. She has a Bachelor in English Education and her MBA. Jeannette is bi-lingual and currently lives in the Tongan Islands of the South Pacific. She posts daily freebies for homeschoolers!