We have a new sport in our house and I am not sure but there may well be a verb: “Rock Pooling…” Last week we gathered some friends and ventured out for an outing to the Save Our Seas Shark Center in Kalk Bay.
And we loved every second of it, in fact days later we are still loving it… and I am woken by little cries of can we go “rock pooling” today?” Frankly I can’t think why not!!!
We began with a talk all about sharks… (and I know he desperately wanted to stick his head through those jaws, and practiced EXTREME self control not to!!!).
We went on to see how we could protect their environment and that meant among other things protecting their food chain. So off we went over the road to examine and ponder the nether regions of the local food chain…
We carefully selected to coincide our trip with the full moon, and so had a Spring Low tide. Which means we were able to walk much further out across the rocks than usual.
If you need to know more about tides here are some handy links:
- A very simple explanation from KidsGeo.com
- BoatSafeKids explains the theory of tides really well.
- Montana.edu has a easily understandable Oceanography page for kids with quizzes and links to facts on tides and tide pool animals.
There was deep exploration and pondering:
Predators and Prey:
Starfish big and small:
In fact star fish weird and wonderful:
And unlimited sea urchins:
There were different tide zones…
And here are a couple of useful tide zone links:
- You can’t beat Ms Frizzle and her Magic School Bus and her tidal experiment, here is the related printable.
- SeaShore Science packed with experiments from Scholastic.
- In factScholastic has an Ocean Life Section to explore, simply packed with activities, articles and lesson plans.
- Library.think quest has a great tidal pool/ tide zone website packed full of facts. Not to mention a cool tidal pool challenge, just to see how much you have learnt!!!
- And some more Rocky Shore interactive fun from Library Think Quest.
- A heap of links and resources, not to mention fun experiments and projects from 42 Explore.
Anyway after hours of intrigue out doors we headed back to the shark center for a snack and a swim…
and a play on the kelp horns…
Then we had a quick look around the center, where there are all sorts of beautiful shark goodies to look at:
And a shop with a couple of shark and marine conservation goodies on sale…
We left with some pamphlets, some head gear and a crowd of kids desperate to return for more adventuring.
Not to mention a great book: Explore the Seashore of Southern Africa by Margo Branch, which I couldn’t find available online anywhere. It is easy enough for kids to read, great illustrations and lots of little facts and “to do” blocks… It is the perfect book for kids to learn the ins and outs of our coast and is on our extra-mural pile as we march through a page a day, until we can visit the Shark Center again – better equipped with a little more knowledge.
And let’s face it you can’t beat an EyeWitness book, so this one is well settled on the coffee table as well.
And here is a funny for you: “The hand of reason…” our super friendly tour guide knows kids so well and the fact that every single one of them will want to press the pedestrian crossing button – I.n.d.i.v.i.d.u.a.l.l.y., to the exasperation of every motorist!!!
Save our Seas has a great website, and a totally fabulous website for kids. And have a look at what the Kalk Bay shark center has to offer. If you have a bunch of kids in need of a tour and you are looking for a totally hands-on experience that you will totally enjoy yourself… not to mention your kids will all sleep terribly well after a day on the rocky shores then look no further. We totally loved it and couldn’t recommend it enough.
And since this post turned out to be a bit more than our usual Saturday spot with a round-up of links as well I thought I would toss in a couple of our ocean crafts as well – nothing like having everything in one place!!!
That’s us… We will be back!!! Thanks to the Shark Center for a great great outing!!!