I’m not sure how unusual this is, but… my kids aren’t in to super heroes. They don’t watch the movies or television shows. They don’t read the comics or graphic novels. They don’t play the video games. Yet we are still surrounded by them. It seems to be the theme of the year.
What my children are in to though, are the amazing capabilities of animals that have inspired so many super hero powers. My son is here today to share what he has learned about some animals and their amazing capabilities that might just inspire the next great super hero…
Did you know there is a mammal that can walk on water? It doesn’t run like a basilisk but it walks! It’s called a water shrew. It has stiff hairs between its toes, which keeps it from sinking. The hairs might help them swim too and are helpful for hunting their aquatic prey. They might have developed hairs instead of webbed feet because they also spend time on and under land. They live in eastern North America and can be from five to six and a half inches. That’s cool!
There’s a mouse, the grasshopper mouse, that lives in the deserts of the United States and Mexico that eats scorpions and snakes but the poison doesn’t harm it. It just blocks the pain. Wouldn’t that be a cool super hero power?!
Chameleons have really long tongues that shoot out of their mouths to catch prey and that tongue is round on the end and sticks to the prey. Its like another little mouth on the end of the tongue! A chameleon’s eyes can look in two different directions at the same time and their skin can seem to change color to match their surroundings. This is really a super animal!
So kids, what are your favorite animals? What cool skills do they have? Maybe a cat that can see in the dark? Or an owl with silent flight? How about a grasshopper that can make giant leaps? In the animal kingdom, there’s no shortage of inspiration!
My son created this super hero that is as fast as a cheetah, can use echolocation to find evil, can fly silently like an owl, and like a chameleon can look in different directions at the same time and has a super sticky contraption for catching bad guys. I don’t think evil can hide anywhere with these powers on the job!
Pick some of your favorites (or learn about some new ones) that would make great super hero powers and use the printable below to create your very own animal-inspired super hero! You can use the spaces to record what the special powers are and how your super hero will use them for good.
Here are some resources to spark your imagination:
- Wouldn’t it be cool to feel the electrical currents that other creatures emit to help you locate them? Read about this super power in Sharks Have Six Senses by John F. Waters.
- Would you like to inflate to three times your size or be strong enough to move something 1,000 times your own weight? Learn about these powers and more in 101 Animal Super Powers by Melvin and Gilda Berger
- Have you ever heard of planarians or tardigrades? You’ll definitely want to read about them. They can do things that would come in very handy for any super hero!
P.S. You can share your child’s animal-inspired super hero creation on our Facebook page using #animalsuperpowers. We’d love to see it!