Category Archives: Sharks

How To Engage Kids to Learn with An Online Sharks Course

online sharks course

Most children (and adults!) are naturally fascinated by sharks, either through sheer awe and wonder or by misguided fear. So, it’s no surprise that sharks can be an extremely useful tool to hook in kid’s interest and engage them to learn a whole range of curriculum topics, without them even realising!

Ocean Life Education has developed a range of free online shark themed educational resources and an online shark course to provide kids, schools and teachers with engaging ways to learn about sharks.

Why Are Kids Fascinated by Sharks?

shark anatomy and adaptation

shark anatomy – amazing sharks online course

Unfortunately, kid’s interest in sharks is often fuelled by exaggerated media stories and scary films, but it’s sharks’ appearance, immense power and ability to hunt that really grab their attention.

Incredibly, sharks have been around for at least 450 million years (since before the dinosaurs). A major reason why sharks have outlasted so many other animals, and a key reason why we are so fascinated by sharks, is their incredible anatomy, which is adapted to hunt and to survive.

 

 

Teaching Kids About Sharks Helps Protect Sharks and The Ocean

sharks & natural selection

sharks & natural selection

As APEX predators, sharks sit at the top of the food chain and help control the numbers of animals below them in the food web, thus maintaining the balance of life in their marine habitat. By controlling populations of large and mid-sized predators, sharks allow smaller fish to thrive, ensuring healthy ecosystems with a diverse range of species and competitors. Take sharks out of the food chain and the whole structure could collapse.

As we depend on healthy oceans for around 70% of the air that we breath, as well as for a host of other things such as food to eat, it is in our interest to minimise human impact and protect animals that protect our ocean.

 

Curriculum Learning with Shark Facts

Through the fascinating topic of sharks, kids can learn a host of primary curriculum themes such as adaptation, habitats, human impact, food webs, natural selection and classification. Studying the curriculum, while being thoroughly engrossed in the subject matter, makes the process of learning all the more enjoyable and inspiring.

Learning Enrichment and Sharks

Often children who need extra support within learning enrichment respond really well to curriculum-based learning which is based around their own topic of interest. That’s where teaching ‘Sharks’ can be a really useful tool to stimulate interest and hook children in.

 

Sharks Course for Kids & Shark Resources for Schools & Teachers

 

Ocean Life Education has created a host of engaging free shark resources and activities: videos, sharks fact sheets & infographics, shark worksheets, shark activities, shark quizzes and an online shark course for kids (and adults!), with the aim of promoting understanding of sharks. All can be used as engaging resources for schools and teachers, as well as fun activities for kids.

Online Sharks Course for Kids

Amazing Sharks Certificate

Amazing Sharks Certificate

Become a certified Shark Legend with Ocean Life Education’s Amazing Sharks online course – learn the facts, bust the myths and help protect these totally awesome creatures through a fun and interactive online shark course. Personalised shark legend certificate awarded on completion. Suits Age 7+.

We hope you enjoy our resources and course and are inspired to want to protect amazing sharks too.

Link – ONLINE SHARKS COURSE

Link – SHARK RESOURCES

 

5 Awesome Shark Facts

  • Sharks have been around since before the dinosaurs.
  • Sharks are literally built to hunt.
  • Sharks can produce 30,000 teeth in a lifetime.
  • Humans depend on sharks.
  • You have more chance of being killed by a cow than a shark!

5 Easy Ways to Help Protect Sharks

  • Educate yourself and your friends about the importance of sharks
  • Share your love of sharks on social media
  • Buy only sustainable fish and seafood – check labels thoroughly!
  • Don’t buy fish marked ‘flake’ – it’s shark
  • Join a volunteer shark conservation organisation like Sea Shepherd or Sharks & Rays of Australia & Shark Conservation Australia.

How to Inspire Students to Protect the Ocean in 2021

 

As environmental concerns gain increasing attention in the media, it is our responsibility to engage and educate children to ensure that they understand why the ocean is so important to us all and to inspire them to want to protect it. In the words of oceans’ pioneer Jacques Cousteau, “People protect what they love”.

So, here’s our pick of the key ocean events that we think will inspire students of all ages to want to protect the ocean in 2021.

 

SeaWeek Australia: 6 – 14 March 2021

2021 theme: The Ocean and Humans are Inextricably Interconnected

SeaWeek Australia is an annual major public awareness campaign which aims to educate and encourage appreciation of the sea. SeaWeek is a great opportunity to increase focus on the deeply woven relationship we have with the ocean and how our survival is underpinned by the health of our oceans.

Involve your school:          www.aaee.org.au/events/seaweek

More info:          www.oceanlifeeducation.com.au/celebrate-seaweek-australia/

 

World Oceans Day: 8 June 2021

2021 theme: The Ocean: Life and Livelihoods

World Oceans Day 2021 is on a mission to deepen understanding of our relationship with the ocean and inspire action to protect it. This year the focus is on how the ocean is our life-source and supports humanity and every other organism on Earth. The focus is on key issues such as plastic pollution, rising water temperatures, overfishing, sewage dumps and other factors impacting the ocean’s ability to thrive as it should.

Involve your school:          worldoceanday.school

 

 World Whale Day: 20 February 2021

World Whale Day began in 1980 in Maui, Hawaii. It’s all about reminding us of the challenges whales face oceans across the globe. Observed annually on the third Sunday in February, World Whale Day celebrates everything about whales.

Involve your school:          www.wilderness.org.au/happy-world-whale-day

 

More info: https://www.oceanlifeeducation.com.au/annual-humpback-whale-migration-east-coast-australia/

 

World Sea Turtle Day: 16 June 2021

World Sea Turtle Day is celebrated on 16 June annually as it is the birthday of Dr. Archie Carr, the so-called “father of sea turtle biology.”  His research highlighted the plight of sea turtles and drove community support to protect them and celebrate them annually on World Sea Turtle Day.

 

 

Involve your school:          conserveturtles.org/june-16th-is-world-sea-turtle-day/

 

Shark Awareness Day: 14 July 2021

Sharks get a huge amount of bad press, yet on average one person is killed by a shark in Australia each year and heaps more are killed by horses and cows!! Without sharks in Australian waters, many ecosystems would not be sustainable, and we would be denied the pleasure of exploring amazing underwater habitats such as the world’s largest natural wonder, Queensland’s Great Barrier Reef. The impact on tourism and economies would be huge. Shark Awareness Day aims to separate fact from myth and promote a positive image for these amazing creatures.

Involve your school:          www.sharktrust.org/blog/shark-awareness-day

More info: https://www.oceanlifeeducation.com.au/ultimate-sharks-facts/

 

Check out our Annual Events Calendar for even more great reasons to celebrate the ocean in 2021.

 

 

Lock in the Dates!

Remember to lock in the dates and get planning so you can make the most of these ocean celebrations at your school. Little ripples make big waves!

Bring Learning to Life With A Live Marine Animal Program

Why not book in an Ocean Life Education program to compliment your teaching and bring it all to life. All programs are delivered by qualified Marine Educators with a passion for the ocean. They provide a lively, fun, and interactive experience with our live marine animals and are designed to educate and inspire schools and community to protect our precious marine environment.

Whale Sharks Fast Facts

whaleshark

Whale sharks are the largest fish in our oceans and can reach 40 feet or more. Whale sharks are slow moving filter-feeders. They feed by scooping up tiny plants and animals in their enormous gaping mouths as they glide close to the surface of the ocean. They are enormous and can weigh as much as 60 tons!!!

Are whale sharks really sharks?

 They have all the 33 characteristics of a shark such as a cartilage skeleton, five pairs of gills and unfused pectoral fins to the head. Unlike whales, they are not mammals and the young are not fed by the mother’s milk. Like sharks, whale sharks are fish.

Ten Amazing Facts About Whale Sharks

  1. The whale shark (Rhincodon typus) is the largest fish and shark in the world
  2. The whale shark is found in open waters of the tropical oceans and is rarely found in water below 22 °C (72 °F). They are usually restricted to around +- 30 degrees of latitude
  3. Scientists estimate that the lifespan of the whale shark ranges from 70 to 100 years
  4. The whale shark is also the largest non-cetacean animal in the world
  5. The average size of adult whale sharks is estimated at 9.7 meters (31.82 ft) and 9 tonnes (20,000 lb)
  6. The whale shark has over 300 to 350 rows of tiny teeth in its mouth
  7. Whale sharks are solitary creatures
  8. They spend most of their time near the surface
  9. The whale shark is a filter feeder, feeding mainly on plankton
  10. The whale shark can process over 6,000 litres (1,500 gallons) of water each hour

Want to know more about sharks? 

online shark course

Check out our Amazing Sharks Online Shark Course

 

Amazing Shark Facts Quiz

Sharks Facts Quiz

Check out our Amazing Shark Facts Quiz and discover how much you really know about JAWSOME SHARKS…

 

 Questions

  • 1. What is the largest species of shark?
  • 2. What are baby sharks are called?
  • 3. What are shark bones made of?
  • 4. Up to how many teeth do sharks have? 100s, 1,000s or 10,000s?
  • 5. Is shark skin smooth or rough?
  • 6. What is the collective noun for a shark?
  • 7. What is the fastest shark in the ocean?
  • 8. What is the smallest species of shark in the ocean?
  • 9. Do sharks have eyelids?
  • 10. Can sharks see in colour?
  • 11. Approximately how many species of shark can be found around Australia?
  • 12. How many sharks are killed by humans every year?
  • 13. On average, how many people are killed by sharks in Australia each year?
  • 14. Name three species of shark commonly found off Australia
  • 15. Do sharks lay eggs or give birth to live young?
  • 16. What are mermaid’s purses?
  • 17. Which common shark lives in fresh and salt water?
  • 18. From what distance can sharks detect blood?
  • 19. From what distance can sharks sense vibration?
  • 20. Do all sharks need to keep moving to breath?

 

 

 

Answers

  • 1. The largest species of shark is the whale shark
  • 2. Baby sharks are called pups
  • 3. Shark bones are made of cartilage
  • 4. Many sharks have multiple rows of sharp teeth – they can grow up to 35,000 in a lifetime
  • 5. Rough – shark skin feels like sandpaper
  • 6. The collective noun for a shark is a Shiver (or School, Shoal)
  • 7. The fastest shark in the ocean is the Shortfin Mako Shark (up to 74k an hour)
  • 8. The smallest species of shark is the Dwarf Lantern Shark (smaller than an adult human hand)
  • 9. Yes – sharks do have eyelids but they don’t blink
  • 10. No – sharks do not see in colour
  • 11. Approximately 180 species of shark can be found around Australia
  • 12. 100 million sharks die each year 🙁
  • 13. 1 person on average each year 🙁
  • 14. Sharks commonly found off Australia…Great White, Port Jackson, Thresher, Zebra Shark, Tiger Shark, Tasselled Wobbegong, Whale Shark, Oceanic Whitetip, Blacktip Reef, Grey Nurse, Bull Shark, Bronze Whaler, Great Hammerhead, Blind Shark, Pygmy Shark
  • 15. Some sharks lay eggs (oviparous) others give birth to live young  (viviparous), and some are a combination of these two, they start life inside their mother as an egg, hatch inside her and then are born live (ovoviviparous)
  • 16. Shark eggs – egg laying sharks lay egg cases known as mermaid’s purses
  • 17. Bull Shark
  • 18. Sharks are able to detect blood from 5 km
  • 19. Sharks can sense vibrations from 3 kilometres away
  • 20. No. Some sharks must swim constantly in order to get oxygen-rich water flowing over their gills but others pump water through their respiratory system.

 

How did you go? If you know any amazing shark facts, please post or email them to us and you’ll get a mention! info@oceanlifeeducation.com.au

 

Take Action to Protect Amazing Sharks

  • Educate yourself and your friends
  • Share your love of sharks on your social media channels
  • Join a volunteer shark conservation organisation like sharkconservationorg.au, marineconservation.org.au, seashepherd.com.au (make a donation if you can)
  • Join a beach clean or just clean as you go!
  • Buy sustainable seafood and check restaurants have done so. Avoid flake at the Fish & Chip shop as it may be endangered shark
  • Ask politicians to support ocean acidification research

Ocean Life Education is passionate about protecting all marine animals and focusing on the important role sharks play in our oceans.  We aim to separate fact from fiction when it comes to the most feared fish in the sea.

Check out our Shark Discovery Program for more information on how to inspire kids to love and respect sharks: www.oceanlifeeducation.com.au/programs/holiday-program/

Want to know more about sharks?

online shark course

Check out our Amazing Sharks Online Sharks Course