Hip Habitats: The Ocean
The Ocean ecosystem includes everything in the oceans, including saltwater shorelines and salt marshes are all considered part of the oceans. Home to the smallest organism and bacteria as well as the world's largest living structure the Great Barrier Reef.
There are 5 main oceans around the world. From largest to smallest: Pacific Ocean, Atlantic Ocean, Indian Ocean, Antarctic (which is sometimes called Southern Ocean) and then finally the smallest of all of them is the Artic Ocean.
Oceans cover about 70% of the Earth's surface and have an average of 2.4 miles deep. Without oceans our planet would be frozen; but because of the moving water going around the globe the oceans help to keep places from getting too hot or too cold.
The ocean actually produces 70-80% of the oxygen that we breathe! Tiny little organisms called phytoplankton produce oxygen as a by-product during photosynthesis, a process of transforming sunlight energy into chemical energy to which plants use water and carbon dioxide to create their food and release excess oxygen into the air.
There are five zones of the ocean from the very top at the Sunlight Zone to the Twilight, Midnight, Abyss, and to the deepest zone, the Trench. The furthest point known is about 35,000 ft down, is the Mariana Trench. Deeper than the height of the tallest mountain, Mount Everest, where there's only been three expeditions to study. Recently in the last 4-hour dive American Explorer Victor Vescovo found a plastic bag in the trench.
Interested to know more about the 5 Ocean Zones? Deep Sea Diver Science Experience Class is part of the 9 Virtual Science Classes starting August 4th. Children ages 4-10 are welcome to be part of a weekly Science Class on Zoom and receive a Tote of Toys, to inspire children to love learning about Science! Registration is open right now and now announcing a price drop: $99 First Child, $69 Additional Child. Click here to register by 7/26/20.
In every ecosystem a symbiotic relationship exists. One type, Mutualism, is when two species are helping one another in their environment so the two species thrive. Nothing seems to be more of a mutual symbiotic relationship than that of sharks and the Remora fish. Remora fish attach themselves to another species (it doesn't always have to be sharks; they can be whales, turtles, or dolphins. They've even attached to people scuba diving!) They tend to clean the animal, remove bacteria and parasites that help the species stay healthy. In return they get food scraps from the shark that provide an endless food supply for the Remora.
Pictured below is the Fortune Fish (A gift with any toy order this month of July!). Place in the palm of your hand and watch it move! Responding to molecules in the air and heat from you this little fish will give you the insight to your questions you are pondering.
What lays eggs, lives in the ocean, and feels like sandpaper? Sharks! Sharks are a type of elasmobranch fish, defined by a cartilaginous skeleton, five to seven gill slits on the sides of the head, and pectoral fins that are not fused to the head.
With fossil records dating back 400 million years, sharks have outlived the dinosaurs and many other forms of life currently on earth. There are more than 500 species of sharks, with new species discovered every year.
The largest fish is the Whale shark. They're harmless, eat plankton, and can grow up to 40 feet long!
About one-fifth of sharks are oviparious or egg layers, the others produce live births.
This month's Ovi-Party At Home Play Pak is a great way to play and explore this concept. A Shark Paddle Ball is included along with many other egg-laying animal toys!
According to the International Union for the Conservation of Nature 25% of shark species are currently listed as endangered, threatened or near threatened by extinction. This month Philanthrolab Science Shop will be donating 20% of Toy Sales to the National Wildlife Federation.
Sharks have a sixth sense! Tiny pores that are near their nostrils called the ampullae of lorenzini allows sharks to feel electric charges and temperature changes. The shark that has the best is Hammerheads, their long head has 3,000 of those pores. They also have the best eyesight. Sharks generally have great eyesight as they can see well in the dark. Sharks can even heat their eyes to get more accurate vision!
Sharks in general have really good senses. Great scientists observe with all of their senses, too! Another class offering for the next session of the Virtual Science Experience is going to be a five senses class called Learn 2 Observe.
A fun craft is to cut out a shark from sandpaper, any rough grit, and put it behind a sheet of construction paper. Rub crayons on the paper to create the textured effect of the shark's skin.
Shark skin feels exactly like sandpaper because it is made up of tiny teeth-like structures called placoid scales, also known as dermal denticles. The scales allow for drag reduction, which means some sharks can cut through water faster and easier than other fish. Second, thicker, less-ridged denticles can protect sharks from being easily scratched by hard surfaces or other animals and even make it harder for parasites to stick onto their skin.
Thank you for reading this Science Lesson Blog written by certified educator of Philanthrolab Science Shop Ms. Stacey The Science Lady. With over 12 years of teaching experience and creative Science curriculum development, her mission is to inspire children to have a love of Science. She is the owner of Philanthrolab Science Shop. An online shop of 50+ Fun & Affordable Science Toys - ALL $10 or LESS! Featuring The At Home Play Pak, Satchel of Science, and The DIY Sci Kit!
If you found this Lesson Blog to be a great resource, filled with fun ideas and educational content that your young scientist would enjoy, please remember to watch the Livestreams every Thursday and Friday on Facebook and Instagram 1:30 p.m. EST. The At Home Play Pak accompanies the concepts of the Livestreams.
Check back soon! New Blogs added every week!
Use Philanthrolab Science Shop's Linktr.ee to get access to everything!
Shop, Blogs, e-Newsletters, Social Media, and Class Registration.
This infographic is also available on Pinterest, don't forget to pin it!