There are many picture books and websites
on sealife that can help students to investigate the environments in which
invertebrates live. The marine environment is rich with life but just like
land, there are certain areas where specific animals prefer to live. These
preferred areas can be called marine habitats. Some habitats can be on the
beach, on the bottom of the sea floor (benthos), floating on the water
(plankton) swimming (nekton), in the deep ocean or nearshore. Some organisms
prefer warm water and others cold. Emphasize with students that organisms,
even marine ones, live with other organisms in a community.
Throughout the world’s oceans there is a wealth of biological life. Students
do not think of the oceans as habitats because they are covered with water.
There are new lifestyles that students have not even thought about.
- Read with students, "Simona’s Nature Adventures in Eritrea,
East Africa," by J.R. Blueford. This contrasts the organisms that
live on the land versus those that live under the sea. It shows that
along the seashore, there are clues of a vast undersea marine habitat.
This might be a good time to talk about different beaches around the
world and if clues of the organisms can be found. Some students may have
found wonderful specimens along the beach, just like Simona found along
the shores of the Red Sea.
- Give students the worksheet as a
homework assignment. Ask students to try and find the true colors of each of
the groups. Suggest going to the library, internet (do a search), or even
- Go over the range of colors that
students come up with. Organisms from the sea are very colorful. Barnacle
(pink - purple shell, living, white to pinkish); nautilus (browns);chiton
(browns-bright colors); sea stars (oranges, reds, yellows, brown, pink, blue,
most colors); snail (any color); lobster (red - orange); sea anemone (any