Create Your Own Owl-Thematic Study Unit for Fall

by admin

Embrace the fall season in your classroom with autumn-themed décor, lessons, and activities! Developing your fall reading instruction around a thematic study unit such as owls is a great way to introduce cross-curricular topics and project-based learning into your curriculum. Plus, whooo doesn’t love owls? Owls are interesting creatures and have plenty of attributes that can be used in autumn activities.

Check out these fun owl-themed activities and hands-on reports to include in your thematic study unit! Be sure to get your FREE downloads for the Owl-themed bulletine board and owl poem below.

Owl Bulletin Board: “Whooo did this good work?” Grades 1–5

This fun fall bulletin board showcases your students’ work! It also adds to your fall theme decorations, with a cute owl perched on a moonlit tree branch!

  • This bulletin board can also be shortened to “Whooo?” for a modified activity.
    • Have students write a riddle about: classmates, other nocturnal animals, or other birds.
    • Post the riddles on the bulletin board and challenge the rest of the class to try and determine who the riddle is about.
    • Download your free owl bulletin board template here!


“Five Little Owls”: Grade 1

Give students reading fluency practice with this owl poem!

  • Download your free owl poem here!

Forest Animals: Owls and Squirrels: Grades 1–4

Teach students about new forest animals with picture cards, a reading comprehension article, and writing activities. The unit focuses on owls and squirrels, providing a short article for each of these forest animals.

  • Find this unit on Teachers Pay Teachers here.

Pocket Book on Night Creatures: Bats, Owls, and Koalas: Grades 1–5

This project teaches students how to create a file folder report that features nocturnal animals: bats, owls, and koalas. The pocket book includes overviews on each creature, Venn diagrams, writing prompts, and lots of art projects! Plus, it is easy to organize with student-created pocket folders.

  • Find this unit on Teachers Pay Teachers here.

Owl Facts (Text-Based Writing, Nonfiction): Grade 2

This activity includes a scientific reading article about owls and a compare-and-contrast writing prompt based on the text! The unit also includes vocabulary, reading comprehension questions, and a graphic organizer to help students organize their thoughts and plan their paragraphs. This paragraph should be bulleted.

  • Find this unit on Teachers Pay Teachers here.

Elf Owl Reading Comprehension: Grade 3

This reading comprehension unit includes an article about elf owls and reading comprehension questions. Students answer questions based on the article, fill in the blanks, learn word meanings, and practice spelling and syllables. This fun owl activity unit practices several writing and reading skills.

  • Find this unit on Teachers Pay Teachers here.

Pocket 10: John Schoenherr: “Owl Moon”: Grades 1–3

Learn about Caldecott-winning illustrator John Schoenherr and his winning title “Owl Moon,” in this literature pocket and activity. The unit includes a biography, a bookmark, and an art activity that teaches students how to draw an owl and a tree, modeled after the winning title.

  • Find this unit on Teachers Pay Teachers here.

Keep your autumn owl themes going with daily (or weekly) owl facts! Encourage students to bring in their own owl facts to be featured as the fact of the day, or relate each fact to another subject such as vocabulary, science, or social studies.

  • Example: A group of owls is called a parliament. This can be related to early U.S. history or government/social studies class!
  • Owls are farsighted, which means they can’t see things up close clearly. Explain how glasses work for farsighted people.
Recommended Owl Books

Read entertaining owl-themed books aloud and provide thematic reading options from your school library for early finishers. Some popular titles to include are:

Owl Puke, the Book by Jane Hammerslough

  • Children can continue learning all about owls and their interesting habits, including owl pellets (book includes pellet and dissection activity).

Owls (Animal Predators) by Sandra Markle

  • This title presents owls as predators and details the growth of an owl and its stalking and hunting habits.

Owls by Gail Gibbons

  • Gibbons, a former teacher, provides a detailed account of owls, including trivia, vocabulary, and information on how some owl species have become endangered.

Exploring the World of Owls by Tracy Read

  • This book gives an overview of the 200 species of owls across the world, including their shared traits and their differences in size, markings, and diet.

What are your favorite owl-themed activities?


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