I’ve been continuing my fun with Little Passports and with Safari Ltd. replicas. They both can add lots of interest to the study of geography. Today, I’m sharing some ideas for using Safari Ltd. animal figures and landmarks for the study of Europe.
Disclosure: Safari Ltd. gave me the TOOBS used to prepare these activities. This post contains Montessori Services affiliate links. My opinions are honest and my own.
For this post, I used the Safari Ltd. Wild TOOB, Arctic TOOB Key, River TOOB, and Pets TOOB. If you’re planning a world study, you’ll find it helpful to have a variety of animal TOOBS available. For the study of Europe (or for any continent), there’s more than one way to approach the choice of animals used.
The activities in this post work well in conjunction with a Montessori Europe continent box. (Note: I made the background of the collage red because of the red Europe on the Montessori world map.) These activities could also be used for a study of Europe before (and after) the Little Passports France package arrives.
Printable Keys: Thanks to Kateva from Safari Ltd. for the educational keys for the TOOBS! These are very useful not only for simple matching activities, but also as a way for you to keep your TOOBS organized and for older children to use as keys for research or for organizing the replicas in the proper TOOB. If you click on each link, you can save and print out the educational key for each TOOB. Here are the keys for the animal TOOBS used in this post: Wild TOOB Key, River TOOB Key, Arctic TOOB Key, and Pets TOOB Key. Here are the keys for the landmarks TOOBS: World Landmarks TOOB Key and Around the World TOOB Key.
Animals of Europe Activity
A simple activity would be to have a tray with the animals you choose and a map of Europe. You can download and print out a free satellite map of Europe from Zonu.
I used the brown bear from the Wild TOOB, the harp seal and reindeer from the Arctic TOOB, the frog and mallard from the River TOOB, and the hedgehog from the Pets TOOB.
The layout is on a Montessori Services work rug. A young preschooler could just learn the names of the animals and arrange them on the Europe map however he or she chooses. I would probably introduce the animals by naming each one as I placed them in their appropriate place on the map.
Young preschoolers could just place the animals on the map without focusing on their exact location. Even if they aren’t in the place where they would live in Europe, it’s still a good hands-on activity for identifying the names of animals and the shape of Europe. For older preschoolers, you could mention facts as you place them, such as that reindeer live in Lapland.
Landmarks of Europe Activity
For this activity, I used a free political map of Europe from Wikimedia Commons. I also used the World Landmarks TOOB and Around the World TOOB. I used the Colosseum and Stonehenge from the World Landmarks TOOB and Eiffel Tower, Arch of Triumph, Leaning Tower of Pisa, Big Ben, and Parthenon from the Around the World TOOB.
The only problem is that the landmarks don’t all fit well on an 8.5 x 11″ map. You could place them all in approximate locations as in the photo above. Or, you could just use some of the landmarks as in the below photo.
If you have the Little Passports world map from the first package, that would work especially well as a map to place the landmarks.
If you aren’t already, be sure to follow the continent series at Imagine Our Life for additional continent ideas and free printables. Also, check out Montessori Print Shop’s continent series for lots of helpful extensions for any continent box or study of continents.
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