Here are several activities to round-out your lesson:
1. Role Playing
Assign each student a part: Saguaro, Gila Woodpecker, pack rat, coyote, owls, snakes, bats, lizard Add extra birds, snakes, owls so that everyone has a part.
Read the important parts of the book as the students act out their parts. The Saguaro can curl up and grow slowly. When it is time for the Gila Woodpecker to eat the flowers, the Saguaro can be sitting cross-legged on the floor with the Gila standing over him. At full size, the student will be standing.
Return to the pages of the book where it references the size of the Saguaro during each phase of life. Show the 4" string. It is ten years old. Older than your students.
Next show the two-foot string. The cactus is twenty-five years old! I’ll bet some of the students may have parents that age.
Next show them the ten-foot string. Have a few students lay down head-to-toe the same length of the string.
Finally the string that shows the size of a full-grown cactus. How many students will it take to make a full-grown Saguaro Cactus?
3. Art Activity
Using green bulletin board paper, cut out a simple Saguaro cactus. Since no two are alike, it doesn’t have to be perfect! Pin it up to a bulletin board. Then ask the students to draw, color and cut out animals such as: birds, owls, bees, rats, snakes, lizards and the distant coyote to attach on and below the “Cactus Hotel".
Your Cactus Hotel will get a five-star rating with your students!