Zoom In, Zoom Out

Light as air

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Activity overview

15 mins
Ages 7 – 9

Science topics:

Animals, including humans

Take a much closer look at this familiar object. Can your class use their reasoning skills to work out what it is?

Run the activity

You will be zooming in and out of the image above – starting very close and stepping back slowly.

1. Start by asking everyone:

  • What do they think the image is and why?
  • What does the image remind them of and why?

2. Every time you zoom out, ask the class:

  • Can they describe the colours, shapes and textures?
  • What do they think the image is now – have they changed their minds?

Background science

This is the skeleton of a pink-footed goose. Birds have air pockets within their bones that help to make them lighter and thus aids flight. The keel-shaped large bone at the front is the bird’s sternum. It acts as an attachment site for the strong muscles used for flying. Compared to mammals, birds have many more vertebrae in their neck. This makes it easier for them to keep their head stable during fast movement, especially when taking off and landing.


Take it further

Encourage children to consider what it would be like if birds did not have skeletons. They may also enjoy this Zoom In, Zoom Out activity Strange stripes and could be encouraged to apply what they know about forces and air resistance to talk about how feathers help birds to fly.