This month we are reading the book, Hello Ocean by Pam Munoz Ryan.
I love the expressions used as well as the rhyme and meter throughout the book! It makes for an engaging reading aloud session.
The main focus this book is using the five senses to experience the ocean: how it looks, how it sounds, how it feels, how it tastes, and how it smells. I used this opportunity to have my students do sensory play!
For seeing the ocean, I showed the pictures in the book, and asked, ” What colors can you see in the ocean?”. My students responded with saying, “It’s blue and green!” I also asked what animals they could see, and they mentioned a variety of sea creatures.
The book mentions both hearing the waves crash and seagulls caw. For this sensory activity, I played a sound clip of ocean waves that included seagulls cawing.
My students loved hearing the ocean sounds and seagulls. 🙂
For the “ocean smell” sensory activity, I had bought some “ocean-scented” potpourri from Daiso (similar to a $1.00 store where you can find a variety of items), and had my students take a whiff!
Some liked the smell, while others didn’t (keep in mind, they’re six years old).
Now this was the fun part!! For these two senses – touch and taste – I made some homemade “ocean water” at home the previous night. I mixed some sea salt into lukewarm water, and added some dried seaweed. Then I let it sit overnight to soften up.
My kids loved playing in the water and feeling the slimy, slippery, smelly seaweed. To ensure that everybody had a chance to touch the “ocean”, I called up my students by name. Since it was just water, salt, and seaweed, I encouraged the kids to lick their fingers to get the “taste” of the ocean! Haha! The only thing I couldn’t find was sand.
The students really enjoyed all the activities and I hope it was memorable for them. I tried to bring the ocean into the classroom as best I could.