Makin' Tracks

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In this activity, learners make plaster casts of an animal track to learn more about animals and animal behavior. Learners can use real animal tracks found outdoors or rubber track molds if conducted indoors. This lesson guide includes discussion questions, extensions/simplifications, and helpful hints.

Quick Guide

Preparation Time:
Under 5 minutes

Learning Time:
45 to 60 minutes

Estimated Materials Cost:
$10 - $20 per group of students

Age Range:
Ages 8 - 14

Resource Types:
Activity, Field Trip, Lesson/Lesson Plan


Materials List (per group of students)

  • Plaster powder
  • Water
  • Zip-lock bags
  • Measuring utensil
  • Scissors (optional, for indoor activity)
  • Rubber molds or tracks (optional, for indoor activity)
  • Sticks/pencils (for "tornadoing")
  • Big Tracks Little Tracks: Following Animals Prints book (optional)
  • "Collar" (circular form cut from cut from an oatmeal or margarine container)


  • Life Sciences
    • Diversity of Life
      • Animals
  • The Nature of Science
    • The Scientific Process
      • Conducting Investigations

Informal Categories

  • Animals
  • Nature and Environment
  • Outdoor Activity


To use this activity, learners need to:

  • see
  • be mobile
  • touch

Learning styles supported:

  • Involves hands-on or lab activities


Includes alignment to state and/or national standards:

This resource is part of:

Access Rights:

  • Free access


  • Rogers Huff, Paula


  • All rights reserved, Board of Regents of the University of Wisconsin System, 2005