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Name of Activity:

We're Going to the Zoo!

Purpose of Activity:

Students will be able to identify and demonstrate locomotor skills (walk, run, jump, hop, gallop and leap).


Locomotor skill lessons prior to this one.

Suggested Grade Level:


Materials Needed:

Cones to mark off six “cage” areas
Colored chalk (for Cage 3)

Description of Idea

Have you ever been to a zoo? There are lots of animals that walk, run, jump, hop, gallop and leap just like we have been learning in class! Let’s make our own zoo by imitating how animals move. I will divide you into six groups. Each group will start at one of the zoo cages!

Cage 1: Walk/Giraffe
Information: When giraffes walk, they move both legs on one side of their body and then both legs on the other side; this is unique to giraffes.

Activity: Let’s walk like a giraffe!
•Get on your hands and feet to make four legs like a Giraffe.
•Move your right hand and right foot forward at the same time.
•Move you left hand and left foot forward at the same time.

Cues: None

Cage 2: Run/Cheetah
Information: Cheetahs run faster than any other land animal.

Activity: Run fast like a cheetah with your two feet.

•Lean slightly forward from the ankles
•Run softly
•Look forward where you are running
•Swing your arms quickly from relaxed shoulders
•Elbows are bent at 90 degrees
•Keep your knees slightly bent
•Land on the middle of your foot

Cage 3: Jump/Kangeroo
Information: Kangeroos are known to jump very high.

•Hold a piece of chalk in our hand
•Jump high like a cheetah marking on the wall how high you can jump

•Bend knees and hips
•Swing arms hard
•Push off the ground with the rounds of your feet

Cage 4: Hop/Bunny
Information: We have learned that hopping is one foot. An animal like a bunny is said to “hop” when they move forward in small “jumps”.

Activity: Hop like a bunny with one foot.

•Hopping is very similar to jumping but it is done on ONE foot only
•Push off with toes and bend your knee to lift off into the air
•Land softly on your toes and bend your knee and hips when landing
•Other leg is usually bent with foot held behind you
•Put arms out to the side to keep balance
•Hopping can be done in the same place or you can move throughout an area

Cage 5: Gallop/Horse
Information: Horses can gallop around 25 miles per hour; that is fast!

Activity: Gallop like a horse with your two feet.

•Face and move in a forward motion
•Choose a foot to start with and start with and step forward with it
•Keep the same leg in the lead during the gallop
•The back leg chases the front leg but does not go ahead of it
•Bend at the knees and try to be “light” on your feet as you gallop

Cage 6: Leap/Deer
Information: A deer is known to leap high!

Activity: Leap like a dear as high as you can!

•Take-off from one foot and land on the opposite foot
•Extend arms, legs, and toes while in the air
•Try to leap a long ways as that forces the body to extend 

•Bend knee and hip for cushioned landing 

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Submitted by Mandy Heigh in Long Beach, NY. Thanks for contributing to PE Central! Posted on PEC: 2/14/2014.

Viewed 125334 times since 10/11/2013.

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Previous Comments:


Correct, bunnys do not hop, they jump. We should all know and teach our students that a hop is one foot. So when we assess the students and ask them to hop they know and perform the skill correctly.

Jake V

I have adapted this lessons using other animals (bear, flamingos, etc.)and the kids love it. As for the "bunny hop", it is a lateral jump so I call it a "bunny jump" but either way, the kids like trying to mirror the movements.


Sorry Nancy hennefer, but bunnies usually hop.


Nancy? What kind of animals do hop?


I'm using this activity but I will be modifying or omitting some of the animal cages.

T. Moore

I used this with my kindergardener's and second graders they loved acting like different animals.

nancy hennefer

Sorry, not closed. Does the math teacher teach them that 2 + 2 = 5??? If you're not using terms correctly, then don't use them.


a little technical Nancy. They're hopping around which is great- case closed

Nancy Hennefer

Sorry, but bunnys don't HOP! (At least no bunny that I have ever seen) I don't know why "hop like a bunny" is still used in our instructions!!! No wonder kids are confused.

We\'re Going to the Zoo!