Exploring Desert Animals

Exploring Desert Animals (grades 1 – 3) 

Activity Overview 

Students will choose two videos that focus on different exhibits of the Arizona Trail at the Phoenix Zoo.  After observing two different animals’ students will begin to understand how animals use resources to grow and survive.  

Learning Objective:  

Students will begin to develop and use models about how living things use resources to grow and survive.  

Arizona State Science Standards 


Key details: Animals depend on their surroundings to get what they need, including food, water, shelter, and a favorable temperature. Animals depend on plants or other animals for food. They use their senses to find food and water, and they use their body parts to gather, catch, eat, and chew the food. 

DogPre-activity Questions

How are animals like us?

How do animals find food, water and shelter to survive?

Activity Instructions

  1. Ask students the pre-activity questions and discuss or ask them to record their answers.
  2. Make sure each student has a copy of the Student Worksheet
  3. Each student will choose two animals from the list below. For each animal they’ll need to click on the video link, observe the Species Label at the beginning and watch the video about the animal.
  4. While watching the video, consider the questions below and then complete the worksheet for the two animals.

SnakeQuestions to consider while watching videos

  • How does the animal find water?
  • How does the animal find food?
  • How does the animal find shelter?
  • How does the animal avoid predators?
  • How does the animal beat the heat?

Student Worksheet


Choose two different animals from the Arizona Trail Animals List and:

  1. Watch the video
  2. Make sure to look for the the Species Label at the beginning of each video
  3. Download the worksheet to answer the questions

Virtual Field Trip Videos

Mexican Gray Wolf

California Condor

Speckled Rattlesnake