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Blubber Glove

Grade: 3-5 (can be modified for grades 6-8)

Lesson Time: 1 hour

Materials Required:

  • 4 sturdy quart size zip-lock bags
  • 1 can vegetable shortening (Crisco)
  • Duct tape
  • 1 bucket of ice water
  • Towels
  • Stopwatch or watch with a second hand


Whales spend much of their lives in freezing cold Arctic and Antarctic waters. How do you think these animals survive in such cold waters? Remember, they are warm blooded mammals. This activity will help you understand how blubber insulates whales and other marine mammals from the cold.

Massachusetts Science Frameworks:

  • Give examples of how inherited characteristics may change over time as adaptations to changes in the environment enable organisms to survive Life Science 3-5 #6
  • Give examples of how changes in the environment can cause animals to die or migrate if they cannot adapt Life Science 3-5 #7
  • Recognize that some animal behaviors are instinctive Life Science 3-5 #8

Activity download: Blubber_Glove

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