May 11, 2016

First Grade Tide Pool Inquiry

First Grade Tide Pool Inquiry

Our nature table got a little transformation for the last couple of weeks of school and became beach themed as we began our final inquiry on tide pools. 

First Grade Tide Pool Inquiry

We began by making a K-W-L chart of what we already knew about tide pools and our wonders which would serve as our guide during the inquiry. After that, we watched a handful of video clips and read mentor texts to build up our schema. You can check out our read-alouds here and playlist here below...

 
Here's a little look into some of our morning work and centers activities...
 
 
First Grade Tide Pool Inquiry

We had one thinking routine for this inquiry. I put out shells, a dried sea star, an abalone, and illustrated reference guide on tide pool life.

First Grade Tide Pool Inquiry

A shell sorting activity had a large basket of shells out for the students to organize any way they wanted to. Some students chose to sort them by size while others did so by type using nomenclature cards.
 
First Grade Tide Pool Inquiry

Students drew what they thought sand would look like under a microscope. They had one picture as a hint. Later I showed them several shots of sand up-close.

First Grade Tide Pool Inquiry

Students also had opportunities to play at the light table with loose parts (shells, glass beads, and small plastic animals) to orally share their creative stories involving tide pool creatures.

Having learned about shells and how sand is made and formed, each student made a clay imprint of a shell of their choice from our nature center. After the imprints had dried, they painted them to look like they were lying in the sand or in the water.

 First Grade Tide Pool Inquiry

The next day we performed two science experiments to learn about wave movement--how it rises and falls. Our first experiment had us reenact the effects of high and low tide on the life forms that live in tide pools which you can read in more detail in this previous post. 

First Grade Tide Pool Inquiry
 
The second experiment had the children make wave bottles using baby oil, water, and food coloring (you can get the full directions here).

First Grade Ocean Activities
 
For math, we used Ocean Measuring Palooza to practice and review our measuring skills. The students especially loved the activity where they measured how tall they each were in crabs. 
 
First Grade Ocean Activities
First Grade Ocean Activities

And finally, we had some special show-n-tell items that students had found on their own trips to the ocean in summers past. 

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