The sea life project was a really enjoyable one, particularly as it marked the end of a rather prolonged interest in the Tudors. We were able to enjoy this project on lots of levels, information finding, craft, display making and watching fabulous BBC dvds in the shape of The Blue Planet. It marked the beginning of Fran using reference books with interest too.
How the Sealife Project started….
Fran: What do dolphins eat?
Me: um.. fish i suppose.
Fran: Dead ones?
Me: Well no, i suppose they are live ones swimming and they eat them in the water.
Fran: Thats horrible. Its not fair to just eat other animals when you are one.
Me: Well, you are an animal and you eat meat. You have tuna and chicken and sausages.
Fran: Oh. I do, don’t i? But they aren’t alive.
Me: Well no, but only cos someone else kills them for you.
Fran: Oh….. what do whales eat?
Me:um… fish i suppose, i don’t know what else….
Fran: Mummy.. .your computer will know…..
*hasty google for whales feeding habits which we found, discussed mammals, small mammals, dolphins being fish, how a whale would actually eat a sea lion and finally…*
Fran: where do whales live?
Me: In the sea.
*Look of disgust from Fran:*
Fran: Yes i know THAT mummy… which sea…?
Trip to Sea Life…
Extract from my diary about an afternoon spent exploring Sea life.
I read her poems about the sea from a Barefoot Book called “Sea Dreams”. Then she did bead patterns while i read to her about killer whales and sperm whales – we looked at pictures, discussed evolution (why did the whales move into the sea? Because it was hard to walk on their flippers!!!!!), carnivores, herbivores, schools versus family pods, matriarchs, parenting in the animal kingdom, size and then talked about the sperm whale and its wax organ for diving for ages. We lit a candle and watched the wax warm and cool and stuck a crayon into the flame and drew with melted coloured wax. We held our hand above the flames and felt the warm air moving upwards. We used a School Express unit on whales for some facts and figures, found the diet of a killer whale on the internet and cut out pictures of all the animals it eats. We used our DK Animal book a lot – (gorgeous) and also a borrowed copy of the Blue Planet book. Then I read her more poems and tried something out from curiosity. I told her a poem was about the sea and asked her to sit still and imagine the picture it made in her head. She said “dolphins” – the first thing I imagine that came into her head and nothing to do with the poem really. So then she got some beads out and I carried on reading all the poems in the book while she played, coloured, beaded etc – after each poem where she was apparently “occupied” she knew what the poem was about and could express an opinion. We learnt a bit of one about a turtle and she adored Spike Milligan’s “A Baby Sardine”.
A Killer Whale Diet Chart and Frances’ Picture of a Shark who has eaten an arm!
Sea Life Collage for Wildlife Trust Nature Badge.
Learning to Paint with Metallic Acrylics on Wood.
Discovering Coral Reefs via Finding Nemo
Fran spent a morning on this completely self-directed activity. It was one of the first times that she demonstrated that she could in fact read well enough to sound out names, wrote all their names out, planned the collage and spent about 3 hours getting it all just as she wanted it. While she was making this she was watching The Blue Planet and had retained an amazing amount of fact from the programmes afterwards.
After looking at different types of Tropical Fish in their habitats, the girls made their own with felt collage.
The undisputed favourite of the project – the Killer Whale or Orca.
Sea Life moves to Sea Shore