Explore the amazing world of marine science from anywhere in the world. To support families and teachers during the current COVID-19 situation, our education staff is creating short videos and learning activities for your virtual visits to the Seymour Center.
Virtual Field Trips
Journey to Año Nuevo Island is a virtual field trip developed for young students in grades 2-3 to see the diversity of animals that visit the island. Explore how UC Santa Cruz scientists and students study marine mammals and seabirds that depend on this unique natural reserve. Learn more details and apply.
Dive into marine science investigations and engineering design challenges from home with Seymour Center lessons that support the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS).
In this fascinating unit designed for first-grade teachers, students investigate marine animals’ body structures and the different ways they function for survival. Then, students apply their learning to engineer an invention to help solve one of two plastic pollution problems. Access the easy-to-use hyperdoc teacher guide and student lessons here. This 5-E lesson sequence supports NGSS standards 1-LS1-1 and K-2-ETS1-2.
For more fun with animal adaptations, check out our Seaside Crafts, including the Camouflage Challenge, Bat Star model, and Purple Sea Urchin’s Aristotle’s Lantern.
Fourth and fifth-grade students and teachers will “Flip for Sea Stars” in this 5-part lesson sequence that targets NGSS 4-LS1. Download the accompanying Flip for Sea Stars Seymour Science Journal for the lesson sequence activity instructions.
- Part 1: STARS ALIVE! Watch a time-lapse video of sea stars and observe how they sense their environment.
- Part 2: FLIPPED OUT. Next, investigate how a bat star senses and responds to being flipped over.
- Part 3: SYSTEMS WORKING TOGETHER. Learn about how a sea star’s fascinating body systems work in this Shape of Life animation.
- Part 4: CHALLENGE YOUR SENSES. Now investigate how your own body works to sense and respond with your eyes closed.
- Part 5. STAR COMPARISON. Reflect on what you learned to compare a sea star to a human.
For the general public. “Flip For Sea Stars” in this video featuring clips from some of the lessons.
Are you batty for sea stars? Enjoy these Learning Extensions.
- Jewel Star Creature Feature and Science Journaling Activity: Can Jewel Stars Sense and Respond to Changes?
- Bat Star Creature Feature: Video about Bat Star Structures and Functions
- Build a 3-D Bat Star Model: Create your own realistic model of a bat star to learn about the special structures that help these sea stars see, eat, and move around.
Meditate on marine wonders to sharpen observation skills and develop a deeper appreciation for our ocean’s inhabitants. This video is short and without narration, great for centering and focusing students on what they notice and wonder to develop their own questions.
Travel behind the scenes through these videos for a deeper look at some of your favorite Seymour Center organisms.
Jewel Star (Pisaster giganteus)
Bat Star (Patiria miniata)
After you watch the bat star video, draw and write about what you learned. Then, model your own bat star with this craft activity to discover even more survival structures.
Hooded Nudibranch (Melibe leonina)
California Sea Cucumber (Parastichopus californicus)
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Hone your scientific observation skills to discover incredible structures and functions that help animals survive in the ocean environment. Draw and write your observations and thinking. Most activities are appropriate for ages 6 and up. Young children will need assistance with reading and writing.
Seymour Science Journaling Activities
- Can Jewel Stars Sense and Respond to Changes? (ages 8 and up)
- Are Jewel Stars Living Things? (ages 6 and up)
Investigating Marine Animal Structures and Functions Journaling Activities (ages 6 and up)
- (Student Pages) Science Journal–Investigating Marine Animal Structures and Functions
- (Teacher/Adult) Teacher Overview–Investigating Marine Animal Structures and Functions
- (Teacher/Adult and Student Pages) Deep Look Marine Science Journaling
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