Number (multiplication and division): Beaver Dam

1 - Learning Objective

Challenge level ⭐⭐

(designed for children with prior knowledge of the Year 3 and Year 4 programme of study)

Learning Objective

We are learning how to solve a natural world problem by using and applying our skills and knowledge of number, multiplication and addition.

Useful prior knowledge:

  • To use place value and known and derived facts to multiply and divide mentally

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Credit: BBC Two - Springwatch

Clip Description

With its stocky body, webbed toes, thick fur and hairless tail, the beaver is one of nature’s great engineers. It uses its large front teeth to gnaw through tree trunks, eating the bark and leaves from the trees it has felled.

In this fascinating clip, a male beaver is busy gnawing through the trunk of a cottonwood tree in Yellowstone Park. Meanwhile, his partner is tending to their dam. Behind a beaver’s dam, a pond forms. The pond is a safe place, where the family home (lodge) can be built. What do you think a beaver’s dam is made from? Watch the clip to find out.

Whiteboard Number Challenge

The beaver has an incredibly thick coat. Up to 23,000 fine hairs grow on 1 square centimetre of its skin.

How many hairs might you find on a 5 square centimetre patch of beaver skin?