Sea Turtle Lesson Plan for Kindergarten through Third Grades

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As the life cycle of the sea turtle is discussed in the series, “Life Under the Sea”, point out the dangers this enormous creature faces as it travels in the ocean. Use a simple hands-on activity that will explain how the sea turtle tries to escape from being entangled or trapped in a fishing net. Hand out a rubber band to each child. Demonstrate how difficult it is to remove the rubber band without using the other hand, when it is looped around the thumb and 4th finger.

Read the book, Into the Sea by Brenda Z. Guiberson and Alix Berenzy. The story explains the life cycle of the sea turtle, as the female lays the eggs on the sandy beach, the hatching of the eggs, its survival in the sea, the escape from being trapped in a fishing net, then back to the same beach to lay eggs as an adult sea turtle.

When reading to the children, model positive reading habits, by always saying the title of the story, the author and the illustrator. Good habits will encourage the love for literature, while developing phonemic awareness, picture cues, thinking aloud, predicting and retelling stories.

Activity: Float or Sink

This science observation will help the children understand how salty sea water differs from fresh water. You will need two bowls filled with water. In one bowl, add 4 to 5 tablespoons of salt. Drop an egg in the salt water and one in the fresh water. The children will observe how the egg will float in the salty water, but not the fresh. Continue observing how other objects react the same way. The class will discuss why and suggest their thoughts and ideas. Explain that the salt adds density to the water and allows the object to float. This demonstration will allow brainstorming and problem solving.

Suggested books to read:

Follow the Moon by Sarah Weeks

Into the Sea by Brenda Z. Guiberson and Alix Berenzy

Animals of the Ocean by Stephen Savage

The Life Cycle of a Sea Turtle by Bobbie Kalman

Let’s Explore Sea Turtles by Michael Patrick O’Neill

Selected sources:

This post is part of the series: Life Under the Sea

The lessons in this series is on the study of ocean life for kindergarten through third grade incorporating activities in art, math, phonics and music.

  1. Life Under the Sea Unit: Caring For Our Oceans
  2. A Lesson on Whales for Kindergarten
  3. Life Under the Sea: Sea Turtles
  4. Life Under the Sea: Dolphins