This post has an invertebrates and vertebrates card sort free PDF. It is intended for Pre-K and primary grades and could be used in a science center. It would accompany a lesson about the differences between vertebrates and invertebrates after children have learned some of the information. It is fairly easy to tell, but a turtle for instance is actually a vertebrate although the shell appears to be on the outside of the body. The spine is attached to the roof inside the shell. Therefore, I did not include turtles in this set of pictures. At first sponges, shells, and insects are enough for children to learn about before they are presented with more complex information. I made this printable inspired again by Karen Tyler’s KHT year long online Montessori class that I am taking. Karen wrote the manuals we are using in class and we are now learning about zoology. I’m learning things I never knew before, as well. I can’t believe what young children are capable of learning in a prepared environment with ready resources.


Here is a picture showing a possible way to use the cards. People wonder if children can really sort pictures like this, and yes, they are able to do so!


All done sorting invertebrates and vertebrates!


Another thing to do with these cards is to name each one (in the case of very emergent readers). Yes, she can!

The cards are set up four to a page. It is obvious this page has pictures of invertebrates.


Click on the words below for an instant download of this PDF:


The printable includes vertebrates such as those pictured here. Ask children to describe the differences between the pictures and I’m sure they will come up with some interesting and fun descriptions. invertebrates-vertebrates-sorting-cards_animals-and-babies

Thank you for reading, Carolyn

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