We talked about how whale starts with the letter W (and I also mentioned the "WH" blend, which I'm not sure they'll remember). The girls have really been interested in writing letters lately, so we practiced writing out Ws:
- Different types of whales - we looked at photos of Belugas, Narwhals, Orcas, Sperm Whales, Humbacks, and Blue Whales and discussed the differences in their size and appearance.
- Parts of a whale - tail, blowhole, dorsal fin
- What do whales eat? - we watched a video showing humpback whales using a bubble net to hunt as a group
- Whales are mammals - fish lay eggs while whales give birth and nurse their young
- Whale communication - the girls enjoyed listening to various whale sounds.
Most of the videos where from YouTube and National Geographic, which also had this fantastic application for learning more about blue whales.
My dad is an oceanographer who recently gave the girls this wheel for identifying different species of whales. They enjoyed spinning the wheel and learning more facts about these whales:
We painted whales:
E tried to copy my whale and it turned out really cute. Then she had a good time filling it in with blue all over. L described all the parts of the whale as she drew them.
Part of the National Geographic interactive blue-whale demonstration included comparing the length and weight of a blue whale to different objects:
Then the girls measured themselves:
It was L's idea to draw a real-sized whale. I told her we didn't have paper large enough, so she asked if we could make a small whale. So we did - out of painter's tape:
If we repeat this whale unit at a later time, I'll probably add more activities - like printing out different types of whales and letting the kids classify them. I think that for 3-year-olds the amount of different activities we did was just right.