Learning Adaptations with Kids: Peppered Moth

Peppered Moth and Natural Selection

While learning about adaptation, we picked peppered moth evolution as an easy-to-understand example for my 2nd-grade son.

What We Used

  • These videos: “Story Time: A Very Special Moth” and “Living Things Change.”
  • Search images, print, and cut them out
    • Light-colored peppered moth
    • Dark-colored peppered moth
  • Search images and print out
    • 2 same images of white bark birch trees (You can color one of them as soot-covered trees)
  • Scissors
  • Tape
  • Black or dark grey color pencil

What We Did

These videos might help.

Story Time: A Very Special Moth (Sci show kids)
Living Things Change: Crash Course Kids #41.1 (Crash Course Kids)

We searched light-colored and dark-colored peppered moths from the internet, and printed them out, then cut them out.

Also, we searched and printed out white bark birch trees images and air polluted industrial revolution images. However! I realized that was not a great idea because we preferred to see the moth on the soot-covered tree for comparison.

I should have printed two same images of birch trees and color one of them as soot-covered birch trees! Oh well. It’s late for us, but I recommend coloring one of the images in dark grey.

We attached cutout moths on each index finger and saw how they were visible in the different environments.

My son had fun seeing which moths can blend in better with each environment to hide from their predators.

Resources for Learning Topics


Can wildlife adapt to climate change? – Erin Eastwood (TED-Ed)


Peppered moth (wildlifetrusts.org)

Peppered Moth and natural selection (butterfly-conservation.org)

Happy learning!

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