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Discover and celebrate wild things

We have gathered together resources from Art UK and our partner museums around the theme of animals, birds and insects.

Use these to find out about creatures and their habitats and for art activity inspiration to use in the classroom or at home.

Top tip! Use these resources to celebrate Earth Day or to support you in joining the Art Fund's The Wild Escape project.

Abstract Tiger

Abstract Tiger

unknown artist

East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust

Art UK resources

Discover our animal-themed activity and lesson plan resources.

Resources for primary students

Create your own animal artwork adventure

Create a wire hybrid creature

Make your own pet from junk

The Superpower of Looking: Henry Rousseau's Surprised 1891

Hybrid creature made from found objects

Hybrid creature made from found objects

Resources for secondary students

Animals and us: Kenny Hunter's animal sculptures

Laura Ford's mixed media sculptures

The Kelpies: ancient myth in modern art

Design and make a winged sculpture


Moose 1998

Laura Ford (b.1961)


Search for wild things in art

Find animal, bird or insect-themed artworks for lesson planning.

Type the name of the wild thing you are interested in studying into the Art UK search box.

Search for wild things in art

Resources from our partner collections

Amgueddfa Cymru / National Museum Cardiff

Amgueddfa Cymru has lots of fun animal-related activities to use in the classroom. Here is a selection of the activities that you can download from their website:

Create busy bee fingerprint art

Make your own wildlife decoder

Write a snake poem

Make a folded paper echidna

Make your own bee hotel

Top tip! Use this 'Make a Zine' activity template for your The Wild Escape animal story!


Elephant 1928

David Jones (1895–1974)

Amgueddfa Cymru – National Museum Wales

Birmingham Museums

Explore urban nature with Birmingham Museums. Use these resource downloads to identify animals, birds and insects and their habitats.

Explore Urban Nature resources

Bristol Museums

Go back in time and meet some of the dinosaurs in Bristol Museums' collection.

Online exhibition: discover Doris the Pliosaurus

Watch: the Bristol Dinosaur

Watch: how to draw a dinosaur


Brisuanadon 2009

Andy Council (b.1974) and Matt Pugh (b.1977)

Bristol Museums, Galleries & Archives

The British Museum

Discover artworks depicting animals, birds and insects from all around the world.

Read stories and explore animal-themed highlights from the British Museum's collection, and download their Natural World teaching resource for lesson and activity ideas.

Explore animals in the collection

Download classroom resource: the natural world

Derby Museums

There are lots of animal-themed resources on the Derby Museums website to inspire lesson plans or for lifelong learners to have a go at.

Children's activity pack
(Ages 5–11)

Take a quiz and find an animal friend!
(Ages 5–11)

Or find tips for drawing insects and birds in these video tutorials...
(Ages 13+ and adult learners)

Drawing for relaxation: insects

Draw for relaxation: birds



Jan van Kessel the elder (1626–1679)

The Fitzwilliam Museum

The Fitzwilliam Museum

Listen to animal stories inspired by the collection – and be inspired to write your own! (These resources are designed for the very young but can be enjoyed by all ages.)

The hedgehog that needed a rest

The story of the horse and the lion

The story of Vanessa and the butterfly

Horniman Museum and Gardens

Explore animals and their habitats with this resource from the Horniman Museum and Gardens. Use it to create a trail if you are visiting the museum or for learning about animals and their habitats in the classroom.  

Explore the habitats resource
(All ages)

Striped Fish

Striped Fish

unknown artist

Horniman Museum and Gardens

Imperial War Museum

Did you know that animals play an important role in wartime? Discover some real-life stories of amazing animals with these IWM resources.

Explore Amazing Animals resources
(Primary and secondary students)

Leeds Museums & Galleries

Explore wellbeing and creativity resources inspired by animals in Leeds museums and galleries. Activity ideas range from yoga poses inspired by animals to making a shadow puppet theatre.

Birds in art and nature

Animal headdresses

Monkeys and primates 

Pygmy Hippopotamus

Pygmy Hippopotamus 2014

Linden Hamilton (b.1963)

Zoological Society of London

ZSL London Zoo

Discover a wide range of fascinating science and art and design curriculum-linked animal activities for teaching in the classroom or at home. Learn about animal habitats and behaviour, explore ecosystems, design a zoo... and more!

Explore London Zoo teaching resources
(Primary, secondary, 16+ and SEND)

Discover facts about animals at London Zoo
(All ages)

National Army Museum

'Jimson', a Mule

'Jimson', a Mule c.1905

L. Shepherd (attributed to)

National Army Museum

Read stories about remarkable animals and pets who have helped soldiers during wartime. Use these as lesson inspiration or download animal activities to use at home or in the classroom.

Explore animal stories

Download: mini mission animal adventures
(Ages 3–11)

Download: camouflage creature resource
(Ages 7–11)

The National Gallery

Discover animal and insect artworks and be inspired by a tiger-themed collage activity.

A creepy crawl through the collection

Cats in the collection

Create a jungle-inspired collage


Surprised! 1891

Henri Rousseau (1844–1910)

The National Gallery, London

National Museums Scotland

Find stories, activities and resources on the NMS website to help you explore a wide range of themes relating to animals, insects, birds and the wider natural world. Use the resources in the classroom, at home or as part of a museum visit.

Learning resources for schools

Reading Museum

Reading Museum's online activity cart has lots of animal-themed art activities and games that you can download and use in the classroom or at home.

Find activities in the animal activity cart
(Ages 4–11)


Discover animals in art and ideas for activities to use in your classroom with this Tate teaching resource.

Animals in art

Bird Swallowing a Fish

Bird Swallowing a Fish c.1913–1914 & cast 1964

Henri Gaudier-Brzeska (1891–1915) (posthumous cast)


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