The Commotion in the Ocean
This TopicQuest was designed for a 2nd grader
By Camie Dyal - A Valdosta State University Pre-Service Teacher

The ocean is a very large body of water.  It covers nearly 75% of the earth's surface, and it holds many different life forms.  Some call it the deep dark unknown.  Do you know what is in that deep dark unknown?  There are many different sea creatures that live in these waters.  Fish, mammals, plants, and reefs, are just a few of the living creatures and prototypes in that deep dark unknown.  Below are just a few of the hundreds of different living things living in the ocean.

Found in most oceans of the world, butterfly fish are small, thin, disk-shaped fish with pointed noses.  There are many varieties, the four-eyed butterfly probably being the most common. Others include the spotfin, the banded, and the reef butterfly.  Most butterfly fish have pointed snouts, very useful for plucking out the small coral animals in tiny crevices  which they feed on.
Click HERE to learn more about these Butterfly Fish.

This seal frequently observed around Long Island lives along the shores of eastern Canada, New England and in the winter, as far south as the Carolinas in a variety of habitats. Their scientific name loosely means "sea calf" or "sea dog."  Usually wary of humans, they are known to follow fishing boats, feeding on the scraps thrown overboard.
Click HERE to learn more about the Harbor Seal.

The blue whale is the largest mammal, possibly the largest animal, to ever inhabit the earth. Its body is long, somewhat tapered, and streamlined, with the head making up less than one-fourth of its total body length.  Its blowholes are contained in a large, raised "splash guard," and the blow is tall and straight and over 20 feet (6 meters) high.
Click HERE to learm more about the Blue Whale.

These gentle giants are famous for their singing abilities -- belting out seductive ballads to attract mates or to challenge other would-be suitors.  These marine mammals travel great distances to take advantage of the best breeding grounds and feeding spots.   Graceful and magnificent, humpback whales inspire awe in young and old alike.
Click HERE to learn more about the Humpback Whale.

Stingrays are beautiful and graceful swimmers, gliding like flying carpets of the ocean floor! These flattened-out fish are related to sharks and have a distinctive, sleek tail with sharp spines on it. Each spine has little barbs along the edges like thorns, which sting like a scorpion's tail, to defend the stingray from predators.  
Click HERE to learn more about the Stingray.

The Blue Shark is long, with pointed fins, a pointed snout, and large eyes. Its sleek, tapered body makes it a graceful swimmer. Its elongated caudal fin (tail) provides swimming power as it moves side-to-side.  The teeth are pointed and serrated, enabling the shark to catch slippery squid and fish
Click HERE to learn more about the Blue Shark.

"Ocean Discovery"

Table and Activity by Camie Dyal, VSU Pre-service Teacher

The Mission

Your mission is to pretend that you are an underwater deep sea diver for the Wildlife Association, and you are studying the habits and every day living of the humpback whale.  You have to develop a report on your studies to give to the Wildlife Association.  Your report requires you to draw a picture of the Humpback Whale, as well as list three interesting facts about this whale, and write a short paragraph telling what you learned about the life of this creature.  You can visit an  information website about the humpback for a more descriptive view for your drawing. 

Mission Steps

1.  After visiting the above link and viewing the scaled picture of the Humpback Whale, the students will draw a picture of the mammal.

2.  After visiting the website about humpback whales at Enchanted Learning Website, beneath their picture, they will list three interesting facts about the Humpback Whale.

3.  Beneath their interesting facts, they will write a short paragraph telling what they have learned about the life of the Humpback Whale.

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