animals have feelings


Trotsky isn’t your regular house pet…he’s a pig! He and his human Elvis enjoy a very special friendship. In this lesson, children will learn about the complex and endearing nature of pigs – an often misunderstood animal.


Year Level: K–1

Learning area: Science

General capabilities: Critical and creative thinking; ethical understanding; literacy

Lesson duration: 80 minutes

Learning Outcomes

Your child will:

  • learn about the unique characteristics of pigs
  • understand that pigs have physical, social and emotional needs, just like humans do
  • understand that pigs kept as pets live differently to pigs raised on farms, and that it’s the responsibility of humans to make sure their needs are met.

Curriculum codes:

  • ACSSU002: Living things have basic needs, including food and water
  • ACSSU211: Living things live in different places where their needs are met
  • ACSSU017: Living things have a variety of external features

Tip: Your child can use the worksheets for this lesson independently.


Scroll to the top to download this lesson’s material:

  • ‘Piggy Features’ worksheet
  • ‘What Do Pigs Need?’ worksheet
  • Optional: ‘Fun Facts About Pigs’ colouring activity

10 minutes

Vocabulary: snout, tail, squeal

Discussion: What do you know about pigs?

Would pigs make a good pet?

Part A: Trotsky and Elvis

Spend five minutes talking over the following discussion points with your child:

  • What do you know about pigs?
  • Do you think pigs would make a good pet? Why/why not?

Afterwards, watch the video ‘A pig in high heels’ below, where Elvis talks about his special friend Trotsky.

Video © Australian Broadcasting Corporation

30 minutes

Tip: Younger children may need extra help to read some of the words.

Vocabulary: hooves

Part B: Piggy Features

Use the worksheet ‘Piggy Features’ for this part of the lesson. Your child will need to remember the piggy characteristics mentioned in the video, and colour the statements true or false. They will then draw some physical features of a pig.

Fun fact: Some people think pigs smell bad, but that’s not true. Pigs don’t sweat and are very clean. In fact, they don’t like to go to the toilet where they eat or sleep. When pigs are confined in small pens, like on many farms, they become trapped with their own waste buildup, which then causes a bad odour.


True: smart, fast, cheeky

False: dirty, lazy, smelly

Fill in the word: hooves, snout, tail, squeal


30 minutes

Part C: What Do Pigs Need?

Pigs have needs, just like humans do. They need warmth, food, water and social time.

In this part of the lesson, your child will complete the worksheet ‘What Do Pigs Need?’, where they will circle the needs pigs share with humans.

Children will then think about how differently a pet pig might live compared to a pig raised on a farm. This creative exercise will encourage them to think about how different habitats affect living things.


Circle: food, shelter, water, fresh air, exercise, social time

10 minutes

Discussion: What new things did you learn about pigs?

What do you wish all pigs could enjoy?

Part D: Reflection

Spend the final part of the lesson talking over the following discussion points with your child:

  • What are two new things you learned about pigs?
  • What two things do you wish all pigs could enjoy, whether they live in a house or a farm?

20 minutes

Extension Activity

Your child can colour in the ‘Fun Facts About Pigs’ activity sheet while learning some cool new things about pigs.

Download additional worksheets that explore the feelings and needs of farm animals. Click on the button below to download bonus worksheets for your child to complete.