This KS2 workshop is not currently running and we apologise for any inconvenience caused. 

In Fur, Feathers and Scales, Classify! students will consider why and how scientists classify living things. Exploring the different vertebrate animals groups in more depth, pupils will compare and contrast a range of unfamiliar objects from the natural world and use a range of criterion to classify the vertebrates represented correctly. They will also consider the issues scientists sometimes have when researching and classifying animals. 

Many objects from the natural world used in this session are loaned to us by HM Revenue and Customs.

Please be aware that though we aim to use a live animal in this session, we do not guarantee that they will be present – animals can fall ill or be unwilling to be handled and their welfare is ZSL’s first priority.


KS2 (7-11 years)


45 minutes


35 students



Intended learning outcomes:

Students will be able to;

  • List the different groupings of mammals, birds and reptiles and explain the differences between them
  • Correctly group animals into mammals, birds and reptiles
  • Give an explanation of why animals are classified into groups
  • Acknowledge their lives have an impact on environments both positively and negatively

National Curriculum links:

KS2 Science Working Scientifically
  • Identify and classify
  • Record findings using simple scientific language, drawings, labelled diagrams, keys, bar charts and tables;
  • Report on findings from enquiries, including oral explanations, displays or presentations of results and conclusions;
  • Talk about criteria of grouping, sorting and classifying and use simple keys.
Living things and their habitats
  • Use classification systems and keys to identify animals and plants;
  • Research unfamiliar animals and plants and decide where they belong in the classification systems;
  • Work of scientists;
  • Impact of humans (both positively and negatively) on environments
KS2 English Spoken Language, Reading
  • word reading, comprehension
  • Transcription, vocabulary


Additional Resources: