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Time to sleep

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Date: Nov. 2010
Publisher: Scholastic, Inc.
Document Type: Article
Length: 752 words

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Some animals go into a deep sleep for most of the winter. That is called hibernation.

Who's Snoozing?

In the fall, some animals eat a lot of nuts, leaves, and berries. They get fat. In cold weather, they cannot find food. They sleep until spring comes.

Dormice hibernate in a nest of leaves and grass. They curl up their tails.

Rattlesnakes hibernate in a den. Other snakes hibernate under rocks.

Look, a Fat-tailed dwarf Lemur!

This little lemur lives on their island of Madagascar. It is warm there, but the lemur hibernates. Why? In the dry season, the lemur cannot find food.

Here is what the lemur does:

* First, the lemur eats a lot of fruit and flowers.

* Then, its tail gets fat.

* Soon, the lemur goes into a hole in a tree trunk.

* Finally, the lemur lives off the fat in its tail for about six months.

Frogs hibernate in mud. They stay covered to hide from other animals.

Little brown bats hibernate in a dark cave. They hang upside down.

A Chart Animals

Read about the animals in the chart. Use the chart to answer each question below.

Animal               How It Hibernates

dormouse             sleeps in a nest of leaves and grass
rattlesnake          sleeps with others in a den
frog                 stays under mud
little brown bat     hangs upside down in a cave

1. Where does a frog hibernate?

den mud

2. Which animal hibernates in a den?

rattlesnake bat

3. What is in a dormouse's nest?

rocks leaves and grass

4. Where do little brown bats hibernate?

cave mud


Say the word cave. Circle the three words below that rhyme with it. wave hat save brave name

Buddy's[TM] Citizenship

Dear Boys and Girls.

Josh is teasing a squirrel.

He threw a rock at it That makes me feel sad. What should I do?



Draw a line to match the words that go together.


Time to Sleep

Goal: Students will learn that some animals hibernate during cold winter months.

Objective: Students will be able to identify some hibernating animals and explain why and how they hibernate.

Concepts of Comprehension: Genre is a type of text, such as fiction or nonfiction. Use paired passages to help students distinguish fact from fiction. After reading the text in Weekly Reader, read aloud the folktale on page 11 of this Teacher's Guide. Ask: Which story is real? Which story is not real, or is make-believe? How do you know? Discuss the terms fiction and nonfiction.

Before Reading

Predicting: As students review this week's cover, ask them to complete this sentence: I can tell that the mouse --because--

Background Information

* During the part of the year when it is cold and food is scarce, some animals hibernate. They go into a dormant, or inactive, state.

* Their body temperatures decrease, their breathing becomes irregular, and their hearts beat slowly. The animals live off the body fat built up in the summer and fall.

* Ground squirrels, earthworms, dormice, and snakes are true hibernators. They go into a deep sleep for most of the winter. Skunks, brown bats, and bears are partial hibernators. They take long winter naps but wake up if the weather warms.

* Fat-tailed dwarf lemurs are tropical animals that feed on fruit, nectar, flowers, buds, beetles, and chameleons. Scientists say that they hibernate in the cold, dry winter because those foods are not available.

During Reading

Critical Thinking: Encourage students to think about the ways animals adapt. Ask: Why might snakes, ladybugs, and some other animals stay close together when they hibernate?

After Reading

Mini Activity: Write five facts on separate sentence strips. (A dormouse eats a lot of berries and nuts. The dormouse curls up its tail. The dormouse goes to sleep. The dormouse wakes up in the spring. It looks for food.) Invite children to arrange the strips in the correct sequence.

Big Issues encourage the use of descriptive words. Display the Big Issue. Ask students to think of words that describe the dormouse and the other animals. Record the responses. Help students use the words to write descriptive sentences and then illustrate them.

Language Arts Extension: Read aloud Bear Snores On, by Karma Wilson, and Every Autumn Comes the Bear, by Jim Arnosky. Guide children to understand the difference between fiction and nonfiction.

Adaptation: Happy hibernation day! Ask students to bring in sleeping bags and stuffed animals and pretend to be hibernating. Then, if possible, play a CD of animal sounds (birds chirping, frogs croaking, etc.) to suggest the spring. Invite students to "wake up." Serve a fruit snack to celebrate spring.


Please note: Illustration(s) are not available due to copyright restrictions.

Source Citation

Source Citation   

Gale Document Number: GALE|A240016422