Friday, January 24, 2014

Manatee Unit Study

We spent two weeks learning about manatees as part of our science studies of endangered species. They are quite intriguing and the children enjoyed learning about them.

Short Manatee Video
First we watched a National Geographic video about manatees heading south. My children had no idea what a manatee is or what they look like so this was a good introduction.

Free Manatee Activity Book
I printed out a really great activity book called Manatees - Florida's Gentle Giants. In my opinion the book could serve as a complete curriculum. But I like to pull from numerous resources to get some different perspectives and to learn as much as possible.

Free Manatee Printables
So with the activity book as a guide, I supplemented the lesson with manatee printables from Included in the printables is a: word search, crossword puzzle, coloring page, and printable manatee craft (a door hanger). My children completed most of the pages and 2 of them chose to make the door hanger. I think these printables helped to keep the lesson fun.

Manatee Documentary
We have an Amazon Prime membership which means we can watch their videos offered on Prime for free. I was so happy to find that they currently have a manatee documentary which held the children's interest for most of it's 47 minutes. None of the other material we had covered the fact that sailors of old thought manatees were mermaids (or maybe I missed that part). So the title Endangered Mermaids: The Manatees of Florida  and the explanation of it in the beginning was helpful.

Manatee Games
We didn't play any of these games at because I didn't find them until after our lessons were complete. But they look extremely educational.