Beach Explorations:
A Curriculum for Grades 5-10

Tidal Pool Map
Upon returning to the classroom, each group of students should draw a new map and include a common legend of symbols to represent the various organisms.

Brain-Buster Questions
  1. How is a tidal pool different from a spray pool high on the shore?
  2. How is a tidal pool in the high tide zone different from one in the low tide zone?

Tidal Pool Mural
Cover the background of a bulletin board with blue butcher paper, art tissue, construction paper, or cellophane. Use a felt pen to draw an outline sketch of a tidal pool. Have the students make paper constructions of seashore plants and animals. As students learn about the location of organisms in a tidal pool, they can draw, paint, or pin their constructions into the appropriate background: on rocks, under rocks, among seaweeds, swimming, etc.

Papier-mâché Diorama
Have the students make clay or papier-mâché models of organisms in a tidal pool. Use crepe paper, construction paper, dried pieces of seaweeds, pieces of driftwood, sand, beach pebbles, etc., to make a model of a tidal pool. Use this as an opportunity to talk about animal homes (habitats.) Where in the tidal pool do organisms live: on rocks, under rocks, among seaweeds, or in the bottom sand and mud? The students can take turns placing the seaweeds and animals in their correct locations in the pool.

Tidepool Crayon Resists
Have the students draw an outline sketch of their tidal pool on butcher paper (approximately 45 cm [18 inches] by 35 cm [14 inches]). Color the drawings with wax crayons. Remind them to press the crayons hard and to fill in all the spaces. Use a wide, soft brush to paint a blue or bluish-green tempera paint wash, the consistency of milk, over the entire surface of the tidal pool. The wax crayons will resist the paint to create interesting undersea textures. Glue these onto the mural. As much as possible, the mural should represent the actual tidal pool and the organisms that live in it.

Preview Pages


overview of each chapter
page 13, 14

sample lesson, tidal pools
page 182, 183, 184, 185, 186, 187, 188, 189

sample lesson, adaptations of surf-dwelling rocky shore animals,
page 222, 223, 224, 225

sample lesson, vertical zonation,
page 202, 203