Frogs, Amphibians, and Their Threatened Environment
Discovery and Expression Through Art – K-3
by Susan Newman, founder of Frogs Are Green, Inc.
Summary: Children in K-3 are introduced to frogs, amphibians and the world that surrounds them. By learning about the Earth’s environment and wildlife and having an understanding of the eco-system, they can creatively express themselves through art and share with others how everyone can help the earth by being eco-friendly. Students will be introduced to photographers and artists, both classical and current, who focus on nature and wildlife.
164 Pages with amazing photographs courtesy of Devin Edmonds, Kerry Kriger, David Veljacic, and Richard Bartlett and links to more than 12 video.
Praise for “Frogs, Amphibians and Their Threatened Environment”
“Susan Newman’s new curriculum Frogs, Amphibians and Their Threatened Environment: Discovery and Expression through Art, K-3 (including many beautiful photos of frogs) provides a new way for children to learn about amphibians and express appreciation of this ‘living art’ through their own artistic work. This curriculum addresses the need for biology and art to not always be taught as separate subjects. This interdisciplinary approach may foster greater understanding of biological concepts and the opportunity to develop a more personal meaning with the natural world through observation and interpretation.”
— Rachel Rommel, Community Education Officer, Amphibian Ark
“Susan has designed a course about amphibians that combines both creativity and science, providing an opportunity where the traditional school classroom doesn’t have to stick to the single boring plan but can bridge several subjects to generate interest in and knowledge about nature through artwork. The designed program is fun, informative, and factual, allowing students to express themselves creatively with amphibians on the mind.”
— Devin Edmonds, Amphibian Conservation Director, Association Mitsinjo
“Frogs, Amphibians, and Their Threatened Environment is obviously a labour of love. The lesson plans are well thought out to involve a child’s natural creativity and curiosity, giving them a stronger connection to the topic. Frogs are popular animals with children and with these lesson plans the kids can easily be kept interested, involved, and learning about the important role amphibians play in our environment.”
— David Veljacic, Nature Lover
Common Core Curriculum with room for art and creativity
“As an educator of 15+ years, I know that it can get difficult to fit art and creativity in to the curriculum in today’s educational landscape.
Susan Newman has taken her passion for art, environmental conservation, and teaching and combined them into a fantastically cohesive, easily taught series of 6 lesson plans. Each is meant to be taught once a week, in about 45 minutes, though they could easily be compressed into a shorter spread of time. The Author has provided a clear and easy to follow outline, materials needed are listed for each lesson, and the Common Core Standards are laid out, making it easy to justify the subject matter and the art projects, even for the most stringent districts.”
— Renee Barrett, Educator and book designer
Endorsed by Amphibian Ark, Save the Frogs, Eco-Libris, Parc Mitsinjo, Sustainable JC, Mayor Steven Fulop and the City of Jersey City!
Week One: Introduction to Frogs and Amphibians
What are frogs and amphibians?Focus is on variety – common vs. most unusual. (Photography, video display and discussion.)
**Art project: select a particular frog and create a portrait using colored pencils, crayons or pastels.
Week Two: The Food Chain
What do frogs eat, and what eats frogs? How do they defend themselves? Poisonous skin, camouflage. (Photography, video display and discussion.)
**Art project: Create artwork of frogs/amphibians interacting with other wildlife using paint, either watercolor or gauche.
Week Three: Frog Friendly Habitats
Where do they live? Marshlands, deserts, forests and rainforests.Discussion (bonus art project) of master painter Claude Monet. (Photography, Monet paintings and discussion.)
**Art project: Create artwork like Monet with lily pads and frogs using either colored pencils, crayons, pastels or paint.
Week Four: Biodiversity in the Rainforest
Rainforests produce and protect biodiversity. Children picture themselves as a frog inside the rainforest and discuss what they see, smell, taste, hear, sense. (Display of rainforest imagery, video and discussion.)
**Art project: Create a 3d frog or amphibian (materials to be determined, clay, play-doh, paper, foliage, etc.)
Week Five: Reproduction & Care of Young
Where and how do frogs lay their eggs? On leaves, in flowers, pools, ponds, and some males carry eggs on their back. Who watches the eggs, the male or female? (Display of imagery, video and perhaps select an artist who specializes in *recycled* artwork for display and discussion.)
**Art project: Create a frog friendly environmental picture showing eggs, tadpoles, and frogs. (Materials to be determined, collage/mixed medium.)
Week Six: Threats to Survival
What are the threats frogs and amphibians face Cars on roads where they migrate; deforestation that destroys their habitat; chytrid fungus; climate change and how it affects rainforests and lakes; ponds drying up; pesticides used in farming that run off into streams, lakes and ponds. What can we do to help them survive? (*Photography, video display and discussion.)
**Art project: Create an awareness art piece with words and imagery about a healthy planet.