# This lesson teaches students to follow the directions of a dichotomous key while naming “Wacky People”

Subject:

Other

9, 10, 11, 12

Title – Wacky People Dichotomous Key
By – Vivian Johnson
Primary Subject – Language Arts
Secondary Subjects –
Grade Level – 9 – 12

If you wish to teach a student to really use a key and not jump to the names because they recognize the animal shown in the pictures, this key makes them concentrate on the procedure needed to identify something unknown.

You do need to give some instruction on how to use the key:

The purpose of using the key is to name the creature shown. Stick with one character until the name is reached, then go to the next.
A dichotomous key gives instructions in pairs of statements. With each character, start with the first pair of statements. Decide which description describes your chosen character best and follow the line to the right. There will either be a number or a name. If it is a number, go to the pair of steps with that number, for example, if the number is 3, go to steps 3a and 3b. If the line ends in a name you have identified your character, so write it down by the creature. Continue until each creature has a name. There is only one creature per name, and no creature has two names.

Most of my students have loved doing this, and I have worked with special ed at high school level, regular ed at the junior high level. Should be doable for students who are able to read the words and follow instructions. Enjoy the fun.

 Wacky People Key 1a Two feet 2 1b Some other number of feet 3 2a Does not look at all human 4 2b Looks a lot like a human 5 3a One leg 6 3b Three or four legs 7 4a Fly-like Mosk Cara 4b Not fly-like 8 5a Seems to be a girl Rita Nita 5b Not a girl 9 6a Leg is curled , two feet Ru-ela.Brella 6b Leg is straight, one foot Giggles 7a Three legs 10 7b Four legs 11 8a Has webbed feet Hex Oculate 8b Clawed feet 12 9a Curly hair, no toes Lugio Wirum 9b Wiggly looking mouth, three toes on feet C. Nile 10a Very long nose, open mouth Elle E. Funk 10b Some other appearance 13 11a Has duck bill, two pinchers Tri D. Duckt 11b No arms or pinchers 14 12a Has ears, tail, and beak Grif Leon 12b Four eyes on stalks Eggur Ondy 13a One eye, webbed feet Cue Kide 13b Four stalked eyes, four pinchers Quadrumenox 14a Three toed feet, nose like a flower Tunia petalos 14b Spider-like, has spots Patterned mulywumpus

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