Learning about the Ocean Zones with the Shelf
You know how much I love to transform our learning shelf. We had a big hungry caterpillar on it before. Then during another month, we found some dinosaur fossils under the shelf. This month, we are going on an under the sea adventure with our ocean theme shelf. Combining both art and Science, this is such a fun ocean zones activity for kids.
Ocean Zones Activity for Kids
Using papers in three shades of blue, I created the three ocean water zones: sunlit, twilight and midnight zones. Our ocean theme shelf became a great visual board for us to talk about the amount of sunlight in the three zones. Then we went on the web to search for the animals that live there. All the weird looking creatures in the midnight zones totally got my son’s interest. He was so curious about how they find food/see in such a dark place. The teacher in me was so excited to share! I jumped in immediately to talk about all the different adaptions these sea creatures have to survive in the midnight zone and their diet.
And one question led to another, we looked at the animals in the sunlit zone and questioned why these animals cannot survive in the deeper ocean. I could go on and on and on about all the concepts (photosynthesis & sunlight, water pressure, marine mammals & oxygen just to name a few) we can teach just through one theme shelf!
Invitation to Create Sea Creatures
On a separate playdate at home, I invited my children and their friends (ages 2.5yo to 8yo) to create the sea creatures that live in these ocean water zones. I put out different materials and paper of different colors and encouraged them to use anything they like to create their sea creatures. We used pictures found on the web as references. It was amazing observing the thought processes of the children as they decide on the materials to use and how to make the sea creatures.
The next fun part was putting these sea creatures up on the shelf! My son cut out a starfish and he pasted it on the bottom of the shelf, exclaiming to me at the same time: “Look that starfish has to be on the ocean floor since it can’t swim.” He moved our strawberry box clam down to the ocean floor too.
I can’t wait to transform our shelf again next month! But for now, here are more themed learning shelves ideas for you!