Exporing Biomes - Salt Water Habitats
Since the class just finished learning about Temperate Forests and Tropical Rain Forests, the Kindergarten through third grade science co-op class began with a worksheet called "Giant Kelp - An Ocean Forest" from Habitats: Science Works for Kids Series, Evan-Moor, p. 56. I first asked the children if they remembered learning the parts of a tree. Then, we spoke of the three main parts of kelp: holdfast, stipe, and blade. Each time I introduced the part, I related it to a similar tree part. This served as review and comparison. After all, the holdfast is not exactly like tree roots. When the children turned their attention to the animals at the bottom of the page, I showed them colored photographs of a few from our Oceans: Animal Classifying Cards package.
Once the worksheet was successfully completed, I began a lecture based off the information in lesson 12 of Properties of Ecosystems. Topics such as what is in salt water and the ocean zones were covered. When discussing specifics about each layer, I used Down, Down, Down in the Ocean for illustrations.
Using the Ocean Zones project from Animal Habitats, Grades 2-3, the students were able to better visualize the concept of different layers within the ocean. I was sure to point out the similarity between ocean zones and forest layers.
When children finished early, they worked on a floor puzzle called Under the Sea, by Melissa & Doug.
To summarize all the information about oceans we covered in class, I finished the time together by reading The Magic School Bus on the Ocean Floor.
Properties of Ecosystems, by Debbie and Richard Lawrence
Down, Down, Down in the Ocean, by Sandra Markle
The Magic School Bus on the Ocean Floor, by Joanna Cole
Other Resource a.k.a. The Fun Extras My Child Got to Do Because I Am the Teacher:
Planet Earth, Education Edition: Deep Ocean, DVD Discovery Education
Creating an octopus following the directions found in Animal Habitats! on pages 74-75.