Your Learning Connection | August 3, 2020 | Vol. 1, No. 12
What lives in the ocean, breathes air, can grow up to 110 feet long, and weigh as much as 100 cars? If you guessed a whale, you are right! Whales are some of the largest animals to ever live on the planet. In the Gulf of Maine we have 22 species of whales. To learn more about the whales of the North Atlantic visit Blue Ocean Society’s web page.
Here at Seacoast Science Center we have a whale skeleton of our own! Watch the video below to learn about Tofu the Humpback Whale. To learn how you can identify some of the different baleen whales commonly spotted in the Gulf of Maine, visit this step by step Baleen Whale ID and then head to the Whale Fluke Coloring Page to make your own flukes!
Let’s Go Fly a Kite!
Have you ever watched the wind blow a flag, a kite, or the trees? What do you notice about how the wind moves? Does it remind you of the ocean’s movements? The “motion in the ocean” is caused by ocean currents, or the movements of ocean water from one place to another. To learn more about ocean currents, check out this How Do Currents Work video.
One type of ocean current is a surface current. Surface currents are the results of wind and tides that pull and push on the water. Did you know that wind can affect water 400 meters deep!? Now it’s your turn! Explore the powerful force of the wind for yourself using a kite. First, make your own kite at PBS’s Take Flight With a DIY Kite. Then, explore the movement of the wind using this Let’s Go Fly a Kite! activity. What can you discover?
Colors in Nature
Have you ever noticed the bright colors found in nature? Take a look around! What do you see? Plants and animals all over the world use color to communicate. To learn more, dive into our Bright Colors information sheets, or if you want to learn more about how colorful males attract females, check out How Animals and Plants Use Colors ! As you can see, some flowers use their bright colors to attract insects and animals to improve their chances of pollination.
In the Backyard Color Matching Video below, our naturalist Emma provides some fun inspiration for you to step outside and go on your own colors-in-nature exploration! What colors do you see in your yard or local park? For more general information on how plants and animals use bright colors in nature, visit the Kids Discover page Colors in Nature!
Hands in Nature
If you look outside your window, what do you see? Buildings? Roads? Plants? How many of the things that you see were placed there by human hands? Human hands have huge effects on the Earth, but they are also a part of nature. Hands have been the subjects of thousands of famous pieces of artwork, going back as long as humans have been alive. Take a look at some of these famous works and read more about the history of Hands in Art.
Human hands are a perfect example of evolution, how nature can change over time, and how we are connected to our mammal relatives. To learn more about the evidence of our connection to other animals that is found in our hands, check out this video on The Pentadactyl Limb.
Now it’s your turn! Look for similarities between your hands and some of the things found in nature, and create your own work of art. Try tracing your hand, making a handprint, or doing a sketch. Need some inspiration? Take a look at some examples of Hand Art. Get creative! Can you make a tree? A bird? A fish? A whole world?
We’d love to see your creations! To share them with us, email your designs to Emma at [email protected].