Thursday, June 27, 2013

Throwback Thursday

I'm Linking up with Cara from The First Grade Parade for Throwback Thursday. It is fun to look at old posts and remember all of the fun things we did this last year.

Here a Throwback from this last fall. I love the ocean and wish that I could dive all of the time. I have been to lucky to have gone on 2 different dive trips and every time I come back, I do a huge ocean unit with my kiddos. The kids love it! Living in a landlocked state only peeks their curiosity for the ocean and they love learning about all the different types of ocean animals. Be sure to check out the two writing freebies at the bottom.

I have been so blessed to have had the opportunity to go on another dive trip. We did our first dive trip 3 years ago and this last November, we went on a week long adventure to the island of Roatan just off of Honduras. Here a picture of me next to Mr. Bud; one of the wreck dives by our resort. :)

When I came back, I of course had to dive into Thanksgiving but after all of the pilgrim fun, I was able to take some time to bring the ocean to my landlocked classroom. We spent the week writing and reading about the ocean animals and at the end of the week were able to pick our favorite animals to create published writing and pieces of art. We put all of our ocean life together to make a coral reef that I would be all for diving!

Isn't it cute! The kids got to pick their favorite animal they wrote and learned about for the week, make a final draft of their writing, and then create an animal out of construction paper. Of will notice all the sharks at the top. Kids are just fascinated with them. I could spend a whole week just on sharks. Here are some close ups of my kiddos work.


When we do our writing, I split the kids into differentiated writing groups that are working on specific targets/standards. As a group, we do an example writing together and discuss the writing target and previous worked on targets as we create a descriptive writing piece. Then the kids go and work independently on a piece of their own. Since we are describing something, we use a web to brainstorm out descriptive words before writing about the animal or object. The below picture shows the group work together on the left. The student then gets to pick out an animal of his or her own to write about. I like to give the kids something tangible to take back to their tables for independent work so for this unit, I used cut out pictures of ocean critters from my dive magazines.

At the end of the week, the kids go back and review all of their writing and pick their very favorite writing. Once they have picked it, we go through and edit the work together. That is the orange pen marks you see on the picture on the right. Then, they write up their final draft. Isn't this clownfish the cutest!  

Here is a freebie of the writing page, if you want your kiddos make an ocean writing of their own.  Here is also another freebie for a seashell writing page that we did after our ocean unit to tie into our life science unit.
cartoon graphicsPriscilla


  1. I love the ocean! I'm so glad I linked up after you so I could see this amazing throwback! I just came back from a trip to Puerto Rico and we got to kayak in the biolume. Such an amazing experience, but I think a dive trip would be dreamy. It's definitely on my bucket list. Thanks for sharing this. Hope you have a nice summer!

    1. That sounds amazing! I might have to add that to my bucket list. :) Thanks for following!

  2. And thanks so much for the freebies! Just downloaded and started following :)

  3. I found your blog through the Throwback Thursday Linky! It is really cute! I am a new follower.