After introducing the concept that all living things have the same four characteristics (need air to breathe, water to drink, food to eat, and reproduction to make copies of themselves), Bear started learning the difference between a vertebrate and an invertebrate.
First she learned that animals also have scientific names and I used the four animals below to show her examples.  Matching plastic animals to pictures is way too easy for her, but she humored me.

 She then did the cards as three part cards.
 She matched parts of a rabbit.
 Below is how the zoology tray is set up.  On the right are three part cards for vertebrates and invertebrates.
 I also have a basket of plastic animals and picture cards of vertebrates and invertebrates.
 She sorted the vertebrates and invertebrates into groups after we discussed the difference between each.
 but didn’t have the desire to sort the cards.  I made these cards for the third grade class I taught in Honduras.

 
Written by Julie Cerdas
I'm a stay-at-home Catholic mom who loves playing with and teaching my two children.