Isaiah 40:12 – “Who has measured the waters in the hollow of his hand and taken the measurements of the heavens with a span of his hand? Who has gathered in a measure the dust of the earth or weighed the mountains in the balances and the hills in the scales?”
Oceans Lapbook/Unit Study
The oceans cover more than two-thirds of the earth’s surface. Though the waters on the earth are really one world ocean, they are referred to by many names: Pacific, Atlantic, Indian, Arctic, and Southern.
Here is where you place each of the minibooks and pockets within your lapbook. I put all of the downloads below so you can easily find them. Too, I’m including my Hands-On Activities so you will have a quick reference for where to find those.
Ocean Unit Study Hands-On Activities
Fun Hands-On Learning Activities to go along with reading about the ocean layers. I like to keep learning fun. What’s more fun than dessert? Learning that you can eat! Here is the short list of ingredients:
Edible Geography – Sea Levels
Edible models are easy to do because you have a head start on supplies in your house and it makes gathering the rest of them easy. I used a bit more candy that I picked up at the store than I normally keep in the house. The idea is to use what you have or can easily get.
Oceans Message In a Bottle
This hands on activity for our Ocean Unit Study is for language arts. It’s preparing a message in a bottle. We used a message in a bottle kit, which you can find a link to in the resources section below. This kit had a cool ocean current map to predict where the bottle may go.
17 Hands on Look to the Sea Activities
There is no shortage of more fun things to do. In case you want to do all hands-on, look at these activities. These ideas are a mix of crafts that will work for ages two to teen.
Get Your Lapbook Downloads Here
Oceans Lapbook Covers
I like to offer options for lapbook covers. The cover above is for the kid that is not interested in coloring right now. But I also am sharing a cover for ocean creatures which your child can color in. You can download the pages below.
Carp Coloring Page
I purchased this picture of carp for some general coloring when studying about geography and rivers. When Tiny saw it, that was what he wanted to color and he did. It sparked a huge debate around here because Tiny had his mind set on coloring it for this unit study.
After I questioned him about whether carp are found in the ocean or not, it ignited a huge flurry of research, which I loved of course. That is the part of learning that I enjoy about unit studies. Sometimes the best parts of learning during a unit study are the parts you stumble upon.
So, I’m including it here in the unit study so that your children too can learn why creatures in oceans differ from those in rivers.
What is the Ocean MiniBook
It is easy for kids to find the answers to the questions in this minibook because it is just a matter of locating oceans and seas in their atlas or on online, whichever you prefer them to do.
Remember the book I told you we would use as a simple spine during our 10 day unit study series? It’s called Discover the Oceans: The World’s Largest Ecosystem. That’s the inspiration for the title of this minibook. You can find a link to this book below in the resources section.
Ocean Unit Study: Vocabulary Words
These vocabulary words cards combined with a wave pocket make a good hands-on lesson for middle schoolers. I used a cursive font to steer away from babyish-looking clip art and to keep lapbooking likable for the older kids.
Remember: I try to design a lot of my lapbooks for middle school age if I can. It’s so easy to find printables and projects on this subject for the younger grades, but it’s tough to find hands-on things as our kids hit the middle grades to high school. I am determined to keep my resources both fun and hands-on all the way to high school.
Ocean Currents “Rivers” of Water Minibook
It is important to understand that ocean currents are like giant “rivers” of water. They could probably make any mighty river we can physically see seem miniature by comparison.
This is the part of the unit study where I want the child to build an awe for creation. I think this part of studying oceanography has to be one of the most fascinating: understanding the vastness of the ocean.
How Low Can You Go? Minibook
This next easy minibook gives a visual example of the depth of a diver and of submarines. With a little bit of supervised research on Google, your child should be able to arrange the pictures or clip art in order from the top of the page or shallowest sea level to the bottom of the page or the deepest. Then simply glue the pictures on the page in order from shallow to deepest.
3 Types of Marine Life Lift Tab Book
The 3 Types of Marine Life is a three-lift tab book. This type of information is easily found on the internet, so children can do their research independently. Your children can write about marine life in general or they can choose one animal to write about (the one I used as a graphic or another).
For example, under tab one they can write about plankton, tab two can be about a Blue Whale, a list of animals that swim freely, or one animal they choose to focus on. Follow this same idea for lift tab 3, which is about creatures that live on or near the ocean floor.
Hopefully, the various animals to choose from will help kids avoid writer’s block. These selections also give them options as to what marine life they want to study about in the unit.
Did You Know? Minibook
The Did You Know? which has a few facts on the ocean, is an accordion-fold minibook. Be sure to look at the lapbook layout at the top so you can see where we glue our minibooks.
Ocean Resources Scavenger Hunt
An easy hands-on project to do during an ocean unit is an around-the-house Ocean Resources Scavenger Hunt. Plus, the printable doubles as the last part of the Oceans Lapbook.
I think any age can do this easy peasy scavenger hunt. The point of the lesson is to build appreciation for the vast resources and products we depend on from the ocean like carrageenans and alginates that we use in our food.
More Resources for Your Oceans Unit Study
These resources are available on other blogs and websites. A lot of them feature tons of wonderful pictures and printables. These are good to bookmark for future use or download and peruse them.
- Message in a Bottle Kit : This kit comes with a cool ocean current map, so if you are dropping your bottle into the ocean, you can predict where it may end up. It also comes with a box or container so you can store the bottle in the container until you release your bottle to the sea. Then you have a nice keepsake box and, who knows, perhaps one day your bottle will return to you.
- Independence Seaport Museum has teacher packets available for free from grades K – 12. Also check out the free online resource How to Identify Sailing Ships on the site. Awesome.
- Project Oceanography has about 14 Program Packets on the right side of the page. Click on each packet and you will be kept happy sorting through links, lesson plans, and downloads.
- The Mariners’ Museum has quite a few projects that are hands-on and in pdf form. This is probably my favorite sites because it has such a treasure trove of things that are easy and hands-on.
- Discover the Oceans: The World’s Largest Ecosystem this is the book that I mentioned I use as a spine for the entire unit study.
- Reef Animal Cards (via Pinay Homeschooler).
- Ocean/Beach Word Cards. There are three sizes on this page. (Via PreKinders).
- Ocean Unit Study and Worksheets (via The Happy Housewife).
- Sea the Sea Ocean Facts Take a look at this website that I used as a springboard for the ideas. I list it at the end of the hands-on scavenger hunt and wanted to share it so that your child can have it for reference and study too.