The Lion in Your Living Room


This film was based on a book “The Lion in Your Living Room“, which I had read last year, so I was really excited to watch the film version. The pace was good and included interesting animations, like showing what happens when a cat falls and must twist its body to land on its feet.

Cats have a remarkable ability to land on their feet, thanks to their “righting reflex.” This involves several key features: a highly flexible spine that allows them to twist easily, a well-developed vestibular system in their inner ears that helps them maintain balance, and a sequence of mid-air movements where they rotate their head, front legs, and then hind legs to reorient their bodies. As they prepare to land, they spread their legs and arch their backs to slow their descent. Their low body mass relative to surface area also helps reduce the impact, allowing them to land safely even from significant heights.

I created a worksheet to go with it for a day when many of my students were out for testing. It actually was a nice follow-up to a video we had watched earlier in the year on dog evolution: Dogs Decoded.

This video is available on Netflix and through Amazon Prime. It is about 50 minutes long, good for a day when you have a sub or classes have been disrupted.

I don’t usually watch full length documentaries in class, mainly because I find they won’t keep student attention for that long. Video worksheets can be helpful to keep students focused, or to serve as discussion points. These are also good for days when students might have other activities, like state testing, or sport events.

Grade Level: 7-12
Time Required: 50 minutes

Related Activities

Cat Dissection Resources

Cats Falling Out of Windows (CER)