The Mow Wow Animals curriculum conforms to the guidelines described in the curriculum content standards defined by the California State Board of Education. The lessons can be used to supplement instruction in three main subject areas: Reading–Language Arts, Social Studies, and Science. To varying degrees, the lesson content is also suitable for integration into areas of instruction such as civics, mathematics, communication arts, visual arts, and drama.
The curriculum is divided into two main grade levels:
Level 1: Grades K–2
Level 2: Grades 3–5
Each section presents plans for a series of individual lessons. The lessons open with a Reading and/or Animation, followed by Discussion and Activities. Lessons include spelling and writing exercises, vocabulary and glossary, and suggested books and online learning resources.
Estimated class time: 10 minutes for setting up and watching the animation, 20 to 40 minutes for discussion (depending on the grade level), and 10 to 30 minutes for in-class assignments. Teachers do not have to complete the entire set of discussion questions in one day and they can choose to discuss selected questions rather than the complete set.
What You Need to Do and What You Need for This Lesson: The teacher reads a brief set of instructions for presenting lesson materials.
Animation: Students watch a brief (30- to 45- second) Mow Wow movie online.
Discussion: Drawing on questions provided in the discussion section, the teacher solicits reactions from the students and encourages them to draw conclusions from what they have seen in the movie.
Poem (or other literary selection): The teacher reads a selected poem or text to close the lesson and the students discuss the ideas presented in the selection.
Activities: Students answer the questions on the accompanying worksheet and/or carry out the tasks as described in the lesson plan.
Spelling, Writing, and Vocabulary: Students learn words appropriate to their grade level and topics presented in the lesson and practice spelling and writing with exercises from worksheets based on the lesson.
Mow Wow Glossary: Students learn the definitions of terms associated with the lesson topic.
Suggested Online Resources: The teacher can point students to age- and grade-appropriate Web sites devoted to humane issues that reflect the lesson topic.
Suggested Books: The teacher can choose from a list of books reflecting lesson themes and encourage in-class discussions based on the books. In some cases, bilingual (English-Spanish) books are recommended.
Curriculum: The curriculum is divided into two main grade levels:
All lessons in Levels 1 and 2 have parallel Spanish language versions.
Education Code of the
California Department of Education
Americans have long recognized the need for kindness toward animals. In acknowledgment of this need, the California Department of Education has included in its Education Code a requirement that students be taught to view animals with compassion and to grant them the same dignity they would human beings. Section 233.5(a) of the code reads in part:
Each teacher shall endeavor to impress upon the minds of the pupils the principles of morality, truth, justice, patriotism, and a true comprehension of the rights, duties, and dignity of American citizenship, and the meaning of equality and human dignity, including the promotion of harmonious relations, kindness toward domestic pets and the humane treatment of living creatures.
This farsighted code regards the humane treatment of animals as one aspect of the broader ethic of good citizenship—the responsibility of each of us toward others who live in our society, including the animals with whom we share our environment. The code also understands that when we fail to treat animals kindly and responsibly, we undermine not only their rights as living creatures but our own dignity as human beings.