Beaches of the Cadiz province are famous for having it all – miles of beautiful silky sand, enormous dunes, paddling pools, pine forests, mighty cliffs and magnificent views of the ever-green meadows, hills and of course the ocean. Local fauna such as migrating birds is part of the whole package as well as you may see them daily. To spot sea turtles, even whales of dolphins you need to be more lucky, but it’s still possible. Even more unusual is the appearance of some things or creatures that you simply shouldn’t expect to see – but you’ll still see them here! One example being a huge iguana from Costa Rica that decided to pop in for its Sunday coffee to one of local beach restaurants.
This magnificent reptile immediately caught the attention of all the children and dogs who gathered around to observe her. And it was a truly multi-sensory feast! Just have a look!
Multisensory Learning/ Observation skills:
As the iguana was leashed kids could safely observe her staying really close to her. They admired her skin colours, paid attention to the black shapes on her belly and tail, observed details on her head pointing out how different the skin on iguanas head, legs and belly is. They watched her movement and body posture and tried to stay still just to see her sensing the air with her pink tongue. The owner also let the children touch the reptile to see how its skin feels under their fingers.
Being so close to iguana the children could observe much more than just colours and skin patterns. They easily spotted reptile’s sharp claws, her crest and could see her powerful tail in action. This sparked some interesting questions that may lead to further discussions and projects on reptiles.
Wow! She reminds me of a dinosaur! Just look at her skin and her big eyes!
And she’s got two horns on her head, maybe she uses them to scare away her enemies…
Look at her sharp claws! Does she need them to climb, dig or maybe attack her pray?
I’ve just seen her whipping her tail! She scared away this little dog! That was a powerful whip!
Social-emotional learning/ Communication Skills
This unusual encounter animated all the children around. Apart from observing they wanted to know more about the curious creature that visited their local beach. Some of them were brave enough to ask the iguana’s owner questions about his beautiful pet and for others it was a perfect opportunity to come closer not only to an iguana but also other children.
Taking learning further
Try to encourage your kids to use their experience to find out more about iguanas/reptiles in general. What you may do:
- have a discussion on reptiles, answer your kids’ questions and ask them yours to extend their knowledge
- find books, documentary movies or games on iguanas and reptiles in general to find out more about their lives: what they eat, where they live, how they hunt, reproduce, how they are related to dinosaurs etc.
- initiate variety of creative projects on reptiles: drawing, painting, play dough/clay, role-plays, construction games, story telling/writing etc.
- encourage children to take photos of animals they see if this is what they like, you’ll be able to see the world with their eyes
- use multimedia to create interactive app books, story book or visual presentations and share them on Google Books or iTunes. You can download photos for free from www.freedigitalphotos.net and create your interactive books in TappyTap, iBooks Author, Book Creator, Toontastic
Photos location: Conil de la Frontera, Spain