Teaching Ideas and Resources with a Beach Theme

Does thinking about the beach make you immediately feel calm? Using a beach theme probably triggers the same response in kids, and since my favorite vacation spot is the beach, let's talk about reading with a beach theme. In this post, you'll hear all about the best books, free teaching resources, tech ideas, and more. 

Best Books with an Ocean Theme

This post includes books, teaching ideas, and links to ocean themed resources and ideas.Of all the books I chose to feature in today's post, there are a few that I truly just love.  The first, Hello Ocean, has to be one of the most descriptive books available. If you are teaching figurative language, put this one on the list. The illustrations are just so real looking and help young readers who haven't been to the ocean actually feel like they have been.  
Riptide by Frances Weller Book CompanionRiptide by Francis Weller is another favorite of mine.  I am a dog lover, and our first dog was a Golden Retriever that looked just like Riptide. Caution though...this one has a really intense part. It is a true story, and your students will be on the edge of their seats with it. The reading level of it is mid third, and I used it in conjunction with a writing prompt focused on voice.  
Have you read the Scaredy Squirrel books? Scaredy Squirrel at the Beach is one of the cutest books. It would be a lot of fun for students to write their own Scaredy Squirrel stories or make a safety list for him.  
The final book favorite is a nonfiction book called Under the Sea. This one was a Scholastic books find, and I really enjoyed using it with my students to work on nonfiction text features and research. The reading level is about a third grade level too, and it hit many of the ocean concepts included in the fifth grade science pacing guide.  

Fun Activities to Check Out

Oh goodness, the activities are plentiful for an ocean theme. You can easily fill several weeks with writing extensions, science experiences and oodles of crafts. I found so many great activities on Pinterest, and this board will be growing, especially once this post goes live and bloggy friends link up. If you'd like to follow my board, here's a sneak preview.
This post includes books, teaching ideas, and links to ocean themed resources and ideas.
Of the pins I added, I certainly have a few favorites. I just love watercolor artwork, and the two I pinned would be easy to make. My daughter made a few like these in an art camp one summer, and I still have them framed in her bathroom.

I also loved the fish mobile, and from the picture, it doesn't look too challenging although I do not think I'd want to do this project with a full class.  It would require a lot of fish cut-outs.

Along with art projects, there are many different science experiments you might try.  The Ocean in a Bottle experiment was pinned quite a bit with different versions.

Finally, there are many writing options as well.  The one I loved most came from 2nd Grade Shenanigans. I bet her kids loved the final products, and I am sure their parents kept them as a keepsake. Too fun!

Best Websites for Ocean Exploration

Take a virtual field trip to the beach with this website. Walk through all aspects of the ocean and learn lots of science concepts too.

Wow, this website would have been a tremendous asset a few months ago when I was working on oceanography with our fifth graders.  Students can travel to the ocean floor to discover what is there and what the environment is like.  Cool!

This last website is sponsored by PBS, so you know the footage and quality will be top notch.  The Odyssey travels to the ocean floor with an underwater camera mounted on it.  Again, students can get a true feel of what it's like on the ocean floor.  

In My Shop

Before I sign off, I will share the links to a few of my Ocean themed resources.  I will also share one sweet ocean themed poem that you can use with your students.
Hermit Crab Guided Reading Unit  Poetry for Your Pockets Summer and Fall Edition  Riptide by Frances Weller Guided Reading and Writing Unit
 Summer Writing Fun   Shiver Me Timbers! The Ocean's the Life for Me Partner Script  

Now, don't forget to download your copy of the Ocean Fun freebie, and if you have Ocean themed resources, be sure to link up.  This week, you can link up your freebies, paid products, and blog posts. 
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