A lesson and worksheet on hippos.
• Students will be able to describe the physical characteristics of hippos.
• Students will be able to identify the behavioral characteristics of hippos.
• Students will be able to explain how hippos are organized into groups and how they communicate with each other.
3rd Grade - 4th Grade - 5th Grade
Print the reading comprehension worksheet passage and questions (see below).
Students should read the passage silently, then answer the questions. Teachers may also use the text as part of a classroom lesson plan.
The name hippopotamus means "river horse." While hippos do live in rivers, they don't look much like horses. And even though they look something like large pigs, the closest relative to the hippo is actually a class of animals called cetaceans, which includes whales and porpoises.
Hippos have short legs and no hair on their thick bodies. Even though their skin looks tough, it is actually very delicate. The dark color of a hippo's skin protects it from sun damage. A hippo also produces a natural "sunscreen" from glands in its skin. It is an oily, red substance that is sometimes called "blood sweat" thought there is no blood or sweat in it.