Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Learning about Tide Pools

I am lucky enough to live in New England (remind me that I said that in January, February and March).  Every year in June we go on a field trip to the beach. It is a blast! 

Right after Memorial Day we begin learning about tide pool habitats.  We made an anchor chart to depict what we know about tide pools.  I did not correct any thoughts.  This was just a brainstorm.

Brainstorm and list animals and plant life that can be found in tidepools.

At the end of our unit, we go back to this anchor chart and cross out any misconceptions after our discussions.

We really enjoyed some close reads on various tide pool animals such as sea urchins, hermit crabs, sea anemones, sea stars, barnacles, and mussels.

tide pool close read

Close reading: Tide Pools

Close reading: Tide Pools

Close reading: Tide pools

We sorted tide pool vocabulary words from our close reads.  We identified the word, found the matching picture  and corresponding definition.

Close reading: Tide pools. Vocabulary words, definitions, and pictures

We researched tide pool animals using our close reads, iPads, and non-fiction texts.

Close reading tide pools. Hermit crab research and craftivity.

Then using the facts we researched and recorded, we wrote informative writing pieces about a tide pool animal.

Close reading: Tide pools. Hermit crab research and craftivity.

We learned that some types of tide pool animals have shells that open and close to feed and protect themselves, and even help them move.  These animals are called bivalves. We made a bivalve mini book to share the facts we have learned about tide pools.

Close reading: Tide pools. Bivalves

 By the time we went to the beach, we knew so much about tide pool habitats and we loved showing our teacher all the cool animals we found! 

Learning about tide pools in New England

We found hermit crabs, bivalves, and snails.

Learning about tide pools.

And we found barnacles, sand dollars, and mussels.  There were shrieks of delight echoing across the beach. 

When we returned our learning continued with some great YouTube videos all about tide pools and tide pool animals.

The YouTube video below is the full episode of "Mussel Beach" from Magic School Bus.  It's fantastic!

The video below is silent (except for ocean sounds) but has wonderfully up close video footage of tide pool animals. It makes for a great discussion piece and learning tool.

To find the tide pool resources seen here, click the picture below. 

Close reading: Tide Pools

I hope you have a wonderful summer!  Do you have tide pools where you live?  I'd love to hear about them! It would be great to share that information with my students too. I LOVE your comments!

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