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Saturday, May 2, 2015

The Difference Between Beef and Dairy Cattle...




 This months lesson focuses on Beef Cattle.  There are many differences between the two, not just their appearances.  Crystal at Mom for Less has a lesson plan that teaches the difference.  The girls made these fun little cow puppets to show the difference and we made up a fun little game to go with them.
                                        
First a little lesson..

Beef cattle come in many different colors.  Some are black, red, white, or any combination of those colors.  In the US there are more than 20 different breeds of beef cattle.  Beef cattle are raised primarily for meat.  They have a shorter and stockier build than dairy and use the energy from the food they eat to build muscle and store fat to make meat taste good.


 There are 6 main breeds of dairy cows in the US.   Holstein, seen on the bottom right, is the most popular.  They are white with black spots, but some have a recessive gene which makes them red and white.  Unlike beef cattle, dairy cows are taller and skinnier.  They use the energy in their food to produce milk, not cover on their body.  Most people think dairy cows aren't fed properly because they appear to be too skinny.  That's not the case.  They are fed a very precise ration to make delicious milk!  Some dairy bulls are also raised for beef just like beef cattle.

This is a picture of a dairy cow from Kelsay Farms...

Below is a picture of a beef cow and calf...



















Now that we've talked about the differences, it's time to get crafty.

You will need:
2 paper plates
2 Popsicle sticks
Black paint
paintbrush
Black and pink construction paper
googly eyes
glue

Begin by painting one paper plate black, or brown, or red, or leave it white because remember beef cattle can be any of those colors...


Allow the plate to dry.  While it is drying, begin making your Holstein cow.  Cut various shapes out of black construction paper and glue them to the white paper plate.    No two spots are the same, so they don't have to be perfect;)
Once you have the spots on the plate, glue on the eyes and cut a nose out of pink construction paper.  Glue them to the plate.  Next cut ears out of black (or white...some Holsteins have white ears) construction paper and glue them to the back of the plate.  Finally add your Popsicle stick to the back of the plate.  Allow this to dry.

Once the black plate is dry, begin making your beef calf puppet.  Glue on the eyes and cut an oval for the nose out of black construction paper.  Add black (or whatever color you chose  ears to the back of the plate as well as a Popsicle stick.  Allow it to dry.

 Now, have fun with your puppets!  My girls had a blast performing a puppet show.
 You can also play a fun little game where you can ask your child a question and they have to raise the correct cow puppet in the air.  I have created a list of questions that you can find here.



Have fun teaching your kids the difference between beef and dairy while being a little crafty and be sure to click on the picture below to head on over to Mom for Less for this month's lesson.



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