Why do baby ducks follow their mother?
Read-Along Mystery 2 image
Why do baby ducks follow their mother?
Scroll for prep
Full Screen
Exit Full Screen

I’m Juan Carlos. I love to visit my grandma.

Guess what she has in her backyard…

Full Screen
Exit Full Screen
Full Screen
Exit Full Screen

I notice some of the ducks look different from the others.

Full Screen
Exit Full Screen

Grandma says the brown ones are mother ducks.

Full Screen
Exit Full Screen

The ones with green heads are father ducks.

Full Screen
Exit Full Screen

I wonder: Why is the mother duck brown? Why isn’t she brightly colored, like the father duck?

Full Screen
Exit Full Screen

Maybe the mother used to be bright green, but she faded.

Full Screen
Exit Full Screen

Or maybe the mother is brown so she can hide in the brown plants by the pond.

Full Screen
Exit Full Screen
stop & talk

Stop & Talk

What do you think?

Why is the mother duck brown, and not brightly colored like the father duck?

Full Screen
Exit Full Screen

I ask Grandma what she thinks.

She shows me a mother duck on her nest.

Full Screen
Exit Full Screen

Look! Her color matches the color of the dry grass.

Being brown helps her hide.

Full Screen
Exit Full Screen
Full Screen
Exit Full Screen
Full Screen
Exit Full Screen
Full Screen
Exit Full Screen

But wait! Why are these little birds following the big duck?

Full Screen
Exit Full Screen
stop & talk

Stop & Talk

Are the little ones another kind of bird?

Why do you think the little birds are following the big duck?

Full Screen
Exit Full Screen

Grandma says the big duck is the mother.

The little ones are her babies.

Full Screen
Exit Full Screen

The babies are called ducklings.

They follow their mother, walking in a line.

Full Screen
Exit Full Screen
Full Screen
Exit Full Screen
Full Screen
Exit Full Screen
Full Screen
Exit Full Screen
Full Screen
Exit Full Screen
stop & talk

Stop & Talk

Why do the ducklings do what their mother does?

Do you have any ideas?

Full Screen
Exit Full Screen

I watch the ducklings.

Here’s what I think.

Full Screen
Exit Full Screen

The mother duck shows the ducklings what to eat, where to go, how to swim.

Full Screen
Exit Full Screen

Uh oh! Here comes a cat.

What’s going on here?

Full Screen
Exit Full Screen
Full Screen
Exit Full Screen
Full Screen
Exit Full Screen

I want to take a duckling home with me.

Full Screen
Exit Full Screen

Grandma says that ducklings need room to play and a pond to swim in.

Full Screen
Exit Full Screen

I decide the ducklings should stay at Grandma’s house.

Full Screen
Exit Full Screen

Grandma says I can come and visit her and the ducklings anytime.

THE END

Full Screen
Exit Full Screen

Recommended Activity: What’s Going On?

Now that you’ve seen how the mother duck helps her ducklings, take a look at these videos. Can you figure out what’s going on in each one?

Full Screen
Exit Full Screen

Extensions

Below are ideas for extending this topic beyond the activity & exploration you just completed.

Full Screen
Exit Full Screen
Print Prep
Activity Prep

Switch to narrated voiceover

In this Read-Along Mystery, Juan Carlos visits his grandmother who has a backyard full of ducks. The Mystery includes a short exercise where students get moving by acting like ducks. If you want to extend the lesson, you can try this optional activity, What’s Going On?, where students watch videos and discover ways that animal parents help their offspring.

Preview optional activity

No activity prep.
Extensions
Download this Mystery to your device so you can play it offline: