Monday, November 9, 2009

Preschool Ocean Lesson

Last fall, when we started our co-op preschool, one of my first lessons was on the ocean. Unfortunately, it is the only lesson I didn't type up a lesson plan for, so I can't tell you every detail of our day like I can with other lessons. However, here's some of what we did:

Over in the Ocean: In a Coral Reef by Marianne Berkes (the artwork is seriously amazing!)

One Nighttime Sea by Deborah Lee Rose (more incredible artwork)

The Rainbow Fish by Marcus Pfister

Octopus Oyster Hermit Crab Snail by Sara Anderson

Coloring Page
I couldn't find a coloring page I liked that was ocean-themed, so I drew one myself. That's why all the sea creatures have smiley faces! To view as a pdf, just click on the image or the label below and it will open in Adobe Acrobat Reader.

Ocean Coloring Page

Balloon Octopi from Kids Craft Weekly: involves stringing beads, cereal, or little bits of straws on long pieces of yarn, which a preschooler will do for hours!

Stuffed Construction Paper Fish: Fold a piece of construction paper in half. I let the kids choose what color they wanted. With the paper folded, cut out a basic fish shape; you should end up with two matching fish. Let the kids decorate their fish (both pieces) with glitter glue, crayons, paint, markers, stickers, etc. When they are done decorating, staple both pieces of paper together, staying close to the edge, and going all the way around the fish except for a gap large enough for a little hand to fit through. Let the children stuff their fish with fiber-fill or cotton balls, then staple the fish shut. Be sure to attach a google eye to each side of the fish.

Fishing Poles: Make fishing poles out of bamboo garden stakes (or sticks or dowels or whatever you have that will work for a pole) and string. Attach a magnet to the loose end of the string. I did this by cutting two pieces of adhesive magnetic strip to the same size and sandwiching the string between the sticky backs. Make small fish out of construction paper. Attach a paperclip to each fish. Let the kids fish! I made our fish different colors, and everybody had to try to get whatever color I called out, but there are a million different things you could do. Think of the fish as flash cards; you can do shapes, colors, ocean animals, etc.

One, two, three, four, five,
Once I caught a fish alive.
Six, seven, eight, nine, ten,
Then I let it go again.
Why did you let it go?
Because it bit my finger so.
Which finger did it bite?
This little finger on the right.

The Fishy Pokey from Everything Preschool
You put your right fin in, you put your right fin out,
You put your right fin in, and you shake it all about.
You do the fishy pokey and you turn yourself around.
That's what it's all about!
You get the idea. We just made things up, like "fishy lips" and "fishy eyes".


  1. Have you seen the sketch on Yo Gabba Gabba called "Argyle the Octopus"? If not, you should check it out, it's in the "Differences" episode. It would be perfect for this lesson plan!

  2. My daughter loves over in the ocean, have you read the part at the back about how the illustrations were made? Amazing!