Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Ocean Animal Book

We prepared for our trip to the aquarium by making a book of the unusual animals that live in the sea. After reading about each animal Julia created a picture and dictated a fact about that animal.

To learn about jellyfish we read Jellyfish by Lloyd G. Douglas. This simple non-fiction book has interesting photographs and basic facts about jellies. We also visited the website of Monterey Bay Aquarium to see pictures of jellyfish and to watch a jellyfish swim. To make this jellyfish craft, Julia stuck strips of translucent paper to the bottom of a bell shaped piece of contact paper. Then she covered the bell with small squares of translucent paper.

Stars of the Sea by Allan Fowler is filled with fascinating pictures and information about sea stars. After reading the book we made bumpy sea stars. To create the sea stars, I cut a star from coarse sand paper. Julia placed the star under a piece of white paper, rubbed it with the side of a crayon, and cut out the star. (After seeing this picture I realize that I spelled 'stomach' wrong. I'm off to correct Julia's book!)

Julia loved the "Don't Just Sit There" activity in Sea World's Ocean Discovery for Early Learners Teacher's Guide. First, Julia had to pretend to be a sea anemone. She sat on the floor and used her tentacles (arms) to try to catch her prey (bubbles). Then she pretended to be a shark. She ran around catching prey. We discussed which animal is able to catch more prey and which animal uses more energy catching prey. We also enjoyed the simple text and awesome pictures in Sea Anemones by Lola M. Schaefer.

Julia is so proud of her sea animal book. I love it when she chooses this when I ask her to choose a book for me to read. Our study of these animals paid off during our visit to the aquarium. Julia was so thrilled to see the tank with sea stars and anemones!

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