Animals in Literature

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Fur, Feather, Fin: All of Us Are Kin

There are many different animals in our world. Some have fur, some have feathers, some have fins, but all are connected. Some depend on us to meet their needs, and others thrive when we leave them alone. This fact-filled story book explores the diversity of the animal kingdom and celebrates mammals, birds, insects, fish, reptiles, amphibians, and more – through rhyme! A great match for young naturalists and animal enthusiasts of all ages.

Why use this book?

  • Introduces different types (classes) of animals in a fun rhyming pattern, that demonstrates even though we, including animals, are different, that there are many similarities as well.
  • Diversity of species and people are celebrated in this book through the beautiful illustrations.
  • Highlights the interconnection between animals and people.

Ask your Students:

  • What does kin mean?
  • Go through the book with students and ask them to classify the animals as pets, farm animals or wildlife. Which animals rely on us to care for them?
  • What is your favourite animal? Is the animal mentioned in the book? Why is it your favourite?
  • Which of the animals in the book live in our community?
  • What types of animals make good pets? Which types of animals don’t? Why?


  • The back of the book has information on each class of animal, including tips on how people can help animals. Read some of the suggestions to your students. Have students create an awareness poster with one of these suggestions or come up with an idea on their own! Hang the posters throughout the school to help spread the message.
  • Like animals, people (and families) comes in all shapes and sizes! Turn to page seven of the book and have students observe the different types of families illustrated. These families look, and maybe function, different from the next, including your family, and that is ok. There is no right or wrong way that a family should look! Ask students: what makes your family special or unique? What traditions and celebrations does your family celebrate? What language(s) does your family speak? Have students draw a picture of their family that celebrates their uniqueness. Remind students to include their pets in the picture!
  • The more we know about animals, the more willing and able be are to provide appropriate care. Ask students: What animal are you most curious about? Why? Where does this animal live? (house, farm, wild) Have students create a list of five things they know about the animal (this could be completed as a class or in small groups). Next, ask students what else they want to know about the animal and individually or in pairs, have students research the animal and create a poster demonstrating what they have learned, using this template! Display the posters in your classroom!

Additional Resources Related to Book:

  • Visit the ‘True or False’ highlight reel on our Instagram for animal related trivia questions to use with your students.
  • Visit Diane Lang’s website for downloadable activity sheets.

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