Monday, February 2, 2015

First Look at Ocean Animals

Water Play and Animals for Tots

Playing with water is an all time favorite activity. That makes learning about ocean animals exciting! My Firefly loves her Ocean Animals book. She played with the coloring pages and made a pretty Valentine lacing card for her Grandma, enjoyed a pretty hand-made color matching activity and played in water.  Please, also visit our 10 Fun Valentine Play Ideas for Toddlers.

Ocean Animals Activities and a Book

"First Look at Ocean Animals" by Jamie McCune is one of Smithsonian Institution series. There is one animal per spread with 3-4 simple sentences. I love the illustrations! They are very colorful and engaging cut-paper art and a photograph.

Extra activities (free printables) are available online. Pictured below, one of the printables is a coral reef coloring page. I colored a couple see weeds to model. The rest is my tot's scribbles (26 months old at that time).


A Lacing Card - the Valentine Gift to Grandma

My Firefly painted the dolphin (a coloring page) first. At 27 months, she could not stay within the lines. So I let her enjoy the process and the colors, and master the brush. After the paint was dry, I cut it out and laminated. The holes are punched out heart shaped. I used a piece of chenille stem for a "needle". She was able to lace it, but not as neatly as pictured below. The activity is wonderful for the fine motor skills!


Color Matching Ocean Animals

We built a coral reef from the colorful sponges. I colored the animals to match the colors of the sponges and laminated them. My Firefly loved her simple matching activity tray. Of course, she used the sponges later for her favorite - water play!


J is for Jellyfish

This excellent Tot School Curriculum includes ocean animals into J is for Jellyfish week. It's free and I highly recommend it for any tots or young preschoolers! My Firefly have learned all her letters, numbers, and shapes, as well as practiced her fine motor skills and started writing all through playing and enjoying every second of it!

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