High Tide, low Tide, Rocky Shore

October 26, 2017 at 7:00 PM

Yesterday, our Year 1 boys voyaged beneath the ocean to Kelly Tarlton’s Sea Life Aquarium to learn about the wonders of sea life in the tidal zones around New Zealand’s shores. With their current focus on rocky shores, the live marine displays allowed the boys to learn about the diversity of New Zealand’s aquatic habitats and the Southern Ocean's unique marine life. 

The boys had a lesson on the tidal zones that rise and fall on our rocky shores, uncovering the huge diversity of plant and animal life that live there - some they were soon to meet! 

In their inquiry, the boys were tasked with investigating living things found below the high water mark; considering the adaptive features of living things that allow them to survive in our oceans; and to uncover the relationships between living things that give a greater chance of survival. They learnt that clown fish are immune to a sea anemone’s poison so anemone tentacles are a great place to hide – but only if you’re a clown fish! An octopus is boneless so it can squeeze into tiny spaces to hide from predators and can change colours – and spray ink to cloud the water when threatened! Penguins have extra layers of fat to survive the cold and their colouration allows them to blend into their environment. Starfish have thousands of tiny suckers to attach tight to rocks as the oceans ebb and flow.

They learnt that marine animals have unique features and needs and we have responsibility to respect that. Every time we take a shell away from the beach, we take away a potential home for a hermit crab; a creature that needs to constantly ‘move house’ to find a bigger shell as it grows. 

Sadly, the boys also learned about the developing problems in our world's oceans regarding plastic pollution and overfishing and explored ways to protect the ocean, fish, seabirds and other creatures that live in and around the sea. 

In the Rock Pool Experience, the boys gladly rolled up their sleeves and got their hands wet with the opportunity to hold starfish, shark eggs and sea snails. The definite highlight, however, was coming face to face with the giant stingray in the open topped tank! 

No trip to Kelly Tarlton’s is complete without a ride through the underwater tunnel as variety of creatures, including sharks, glide overhead, as well as a journey to a snowy wilderness to watch the penguins. 

Fired with enthusiasm, the boys are now looking forward to extending their newfound knowledge by exploring the local environment around school, visiting the boardwalk and the local beach at both low tide and high tide.

Education Outside the Classroom (EOTC)
Education outside the classroom  is used at various stages of students’ learning to create engaging links between the classroom and real-world experiences. EOTC has been is use in New Zealand schools for more than a century to expand the breadth of learning beyond the four walls of the classroom. These experiences at Saint Kentigern Boys’ School can range from 10 minutes in the school grounds, to a half day visit to a local museum, an overnight camping experience, or overseas trip. The excursions provide students with a range of contexts to develop key competencies, explore their values and the values of others, and apply learning across the curriculum. An EOTC outing can be utilised during a unit of enquiry to solidify the knowledge and skills the students have developed. Alternatively, it can take place to introduce a unit of enquiry, to load the students with material which is then extended and advanced in lessons back in the classroom. 

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