San Diego Natural History Museum--Your Nature Connection
Animal Eyes Discover Your Eye Q!TM
Background Information

Here's some more information about the clues and answers on the Discover Your Eye Q! game board and answer key. Words in bold type are the answers we're looking for-be careful not to give them away before everyone has had a chance to come up with a solution.

Types of animals

100: Nocturnal animals include raccoons, opossums, bats, and cats.
200: Insects include flies, ants, bees, beetles, and dragonflies.
300: Other characteristics of fish include fins, gills, and streamlined bodies. Cold-blooded land animals with no eyelids include snakes and some lizards.
400: Prey animals with good peripheral vision include mice, deer, squirrels, many types of birds, rabbits, and zebras.
500: Predators with eyes at the front of their heads include humans, lions, and coyotes.

Who am I?

100: Some flower petals have UV markings that may help bees find the nectar. We can't see these patterns without special equipment.
200: Raptors' eyes can detect things about eight times farther than our eyes can. They can spot tiny prey like mice and moles from high in the air.
300: A chameleon can look up with one eye and down with the other at the same time. Only a couple of animals can do this. Another example is the sea horse.
400: Most spiders have eight eyes to look all around without turning. Scientists don't know what the world looks like to a spider.
500: The whale has the largest eyes of any mammal, but they're located on the sides of its head, so there's a gap in the middle of its field of view.

Light and Dark

100: No creature can see in total darkness.
200: Your pupil is a hole in the middle of your iris. Try the following demonstration for your students: Close one eye and count to twenty-your pupil will get bigger. Then, when you open your eye, students can watch the hole shrink in reaction to the light.
300: Big eyes collect more light. Other adaptations for seeing in low light include big pupils and reflectors inside the eyes.
400: The sun is a big glowing blob of gas, just like all the other stars in the sky. It's so bright it can light up half of the planet at once.
500: We see color because of reflected light. White light contains all the colors of the rainbow. When white light hits a red T-shirt, the other colors are absorbed, and the red light bounces off and gets into our eyes. That's what makes the shirt look red.

Science and Technology

100: All lenses are curved to bend and focus light. In your eye, the curved lens adjusts to fine-tune the image and make it crisp and clear. Some people need an extra lens to improve their vision, so they wear glasses or contact lenses.
200: A camera has many parts that correspond directly to the parts of the eye:

  • The camera's lens focuses light, just like the cornea and lens in an eye.
  • The camera's adjustable aperture is like the eye's iris, opening and closing to let more or less light in.
  • The camera's film is like the retina. It is a thin layer that the image lands on, made up of little dots that add up to form the whole picture.
300: When you look in the mirror, what do you call the image of yourself that you see? Your reflection. That's light bouncing off of you, reflecting off the mirror and entering your eye. Your brain adds up the light into an image that you recognize.
400: We use this scientific process everyday-every time you try something to see if it works, you're experimenting.
500: A hypothesis describes what might happen, and a theory explains why.

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Teacher's Guide | Animal Eyes | Exhibits