Science > Life Science > Life Cycles > Chicken Life Cycle

Chicken Life Cycle Worksheets & Printables

These worksheets will help students learn about butterfly metamorphosis from egg mass to chick to an adult chicken. Everything you need for your chicken life cycle lesson!

  • Create a KWL chart with your children. Ask them what they KNOW about chicks or chickens, and what they WANT to know. At the end of the unit, fill in the last column with what they LEARNED.
  • Visit a farm. This provides children with the opportunity to see eggs, chicks, chickens, hens, and roosters. The host may also be able to speak to the children about the process from egg to hatching.
  • Show children a video of the egg hatching process. Discuss the changes to the shell and what the chick looks like when it leaves the egg.
  • Incorporate art by having children create a poster of the chicken life cycle. You could use strips of brown paper to create a nest for the egg. A simple chick can be made using a yellow bingo dabber and markers to add features like faces and legs. There are many how-to videos that demonstrate how children can draw a simple chicken.

Chickens go through five stages in their life cycle: eggs, embryos, hatching, chicks, then fully grown adults. It takes about 25 hours for a hen to form an egg. She then finds a safe, quiet spot to lay the egg. She may lay a total of around 12 eggs, each a day apart.

During the next stage, the hen sits on her eggs to keep them warm. She also uses her beak to turn the eggs. This helps keep the embryos inside healthy. The embryos grow for about 21 days. Around day 19, the pipping process begins. This means that a baby chick inside the egg uses the egg tooth at the tip of its beak to peck a hole in the eggshell. It can take up to 24 hours for the pipping process to be completed. When it’s done, the chick can break free from the eggshell. This is the hatching stage of the life cycle.

When the chick first comes out of the egg, it may be a little wobbly when it tries to walk. It also has wet feathers. The feathers dry quickly though and become fluffy. The chick will continue to grow more feathers for about 30 days. During the first few days, the hen will take care of her chicks and often keep them under her wing. She keeps them warm and makes sure they have food. As the chick grows, it will learn behaviors like roosting and finding food for itself.

In about six months, chicks are considered adult chickens. This is the final stage of their life cycle. During their life, chickens molt once a year. This means they lose their feathers and grow new ones. Chickens spend a lot of their time looking for food. They are omnivores, which means they eat both meat and vegetables. They eat things like seeds, insects, and mice. Depending on the breed, chickens can live for around five to ten years.

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