Friday, July 17, 2020

Learning About the Alphabet: I is for Iguana

Text: Learning about the Alphabet: I is for Iguana; A Mom's Quest to Teach logo; background photo of green leaves

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Over the course of twenty-six posts, I will introduce my own simple lessons for the letters of the alphabet. I will provide ideas and suggestions for a week's worth of activities.

For the letter I, we focused upon iguanas. 

So just what is an iguana? They are one type of lizard that lives in a variety of climates and habitats. There are 35 different species of iguana that live primarily in North and South America (with a few species living on the island of Madagascar). 

photograph of iguana
photo courtesy of Brian R.

Iguana Facts 

Text: Learning About the Alphabet: I is for Iguana; A Mom's Quest to Teach; child's painting of an iguana

  • Iguanas have an opening on the top of their head that is only covered by skin that is called a 'third eye' - scientists think the 'third eye' help the iguana interpret its environment
  • Green iguanas can grow to be up to 6 feet long (from head to tail) 
  • Green iguanas can weigh about 11 pounds 
  • Marine iguanas live on and around the Galapagos Islands - they are often seen swimming 
  • Male iguanas tend to be more colorful than female iguanas 
  • The blue iguana can weigh up to 30 pounds 
  • Iguanas lay eggs and are cold-blooded 
  • Many iguanas use their whip-like tail for defense against predators 
  • Iguana females lay their eggs and then abandon them – they do not raise their young 
  • Because reptiles iguanas are cold-blooded, they will sunbathe to help regulate their body temperature 


PetsSome individuals keep iguanas as pets. Be sure to do your research before purchasing any pet. Iguanas need a temperature-controlled environment since they are cold-blooded and require special care. They can also grow quite large, have sharp claws, and like any animal may bite when startled, sick, or annoyed. 


There aren't too many iguana-specific books but there are plenty of books about lizards! 


If you live near a playground, you can very easily discuss how most iguanas are arboreal or spend most of their time in the trees. Children can then spend climbing and pretending they are iguanas climbing on the playground equipment. 

Iguana Leaf Painting  

children's painting of iguana



1. Draw a picture of an iguana on a sheet of paper. 

pencil drawing of iguana

2. Gather leaves as your paintbrushes. (Since many iguanas live in the trees, I thought using a new painting technique would be fun.) 

leaves; drawing of iguana

3. Paint the iguana. 

painting drawing of iguana

painting a drawing of an iguana

4. Allow to dry and then display proudly on the refrigerator (or wherever you hang children's artwork). 

painting of an iguana

Other Topics 


Why not study some creepy, crawly insects while talking about the letter I? You can even make a ladybug paper bag puppet or talk about the life cycle of a butterfly

ladybug paper bag puppets

Ice Cream 

  • Make your own ice cream with your children. 
  • Serve an ice cream soda. 
  • Have an ice cream sundae party. 
  • Try new and different flavors (and toppings!) to expand your children's palate. 


World of Animals course image on book, tablet, and laptop

A World of Animals at is a great course to introduce your third- or fourth-grader to a variety of animals. You can use resources at World Book Online to study how animals are classified, what they eat, if they are endangered or not, and how to care for those that might make good pets. Children will read online books about different species of dogs, sharks, iguanas, and more to discover the world of animals around them. 

Itchy Inchworm Week at Teaching with Faith offers many great ideas for teaching your preschooler the letter I. From a craft to practicing fine motor skills to a fun sensory activity that centers on a Bible story, there are a great number of ideas that you might want to include in your homeschool day. 

ladybug painting from Teaching with Faith
courtesy of Teaching with Faith

Igloos, Ice Cream, and Insects: Letter I Preschool Activities and Printable from The Schoolin' Swag Blog offers even more variety of fun activities to do with your preschooler for the letter I. I love the idea of many having a butterfly garden so you can get a closer look at insects. The suggestion of incorporating sensory activities with ice is also perfect for summer weather.

letter I crafts from Tots and Me...Growing Up Together
courtesy of Tots and Me...Growing Up Together 

Tots and Me... Growing Up Together has two great posts with even more fun ideas to teach the letter I to your preschoolers. In one, she shares with you a fun snack idea for your little ones using muffin tins. You can also read a recap of all the fun letter I activities and crafts they did in their homeschool


  1. Love the leaf painting...I haven't done that in a while, I think that might be a great idea for this week.

    1. It was fun but started my allergies. I thought I avoided anything that might bother me but nope.

  2. Such great ideas! We have great center in central Maine that focuses a lot on reptiles, right now of course it is closed. However, the owner is doing many Facebook Live videos introducing the animals and sharing a lot of great educational information. He has a very large iguana, it is so neat looking. We have tickets to visit his center as soon as it re-opens.

    1. Hope you guys get to visit it soon! I love reptiles - so interesting to study.

  3. The leaf painting is such a creative idea! I also love the facts about iguanas. You have some great ideas here!