Inspiring Children to be the Best That They Can Be

For: Primary Educators, Parents, and Kids Inspiring Children To Love Learning And Be The Best They Can Be

Monday, July 16, 2012

Time To Explore

  Greetings to young (and young at heart) readers and writers, 
            I encourage you all to take time to explore an exciting place in your community this summer.  
            This desire led me to the South Carolina Aquarium which "inspired" me to research sea turtles - and yes, "create" a poem about them.  I will also include other good stuff, so let's begin.     

Reading Rainbow Connection
         I have always loved the books featured on the televised Reading Rainbow program.  If you have an ipad, you can now download reading rainbow adventures free.  What a wonderful way to enjoy reading and tweak skills at the same time!

Odyssey Learning Games 

     I would like to highlight two games great for summer fun - and learning.  Please visit the website for the best in math, strategy, word games and more.  
(3 years old through adult)

Forbidden Island

     The first is Forbidden Island.  It is an award winning game (10 including Mensa) geared to older players (10 & up) although I have seen 8 year olds play successfully.  It is one of the few games where cooperation is an essential part of winning.  Collect sacred treasures and make your escape - before the island collapses. 

24 Add Subtract Primer
24 Double Digits       The second choice for this blog is "24".  This is the perfect way to practice those math facts over the summer.  There are four products in all that feature addition, subtraction, multiplication, and/or division.  
       Did I mention that they are all on special this month?  Turn practice into a game - in many parts of the USA, "24" is also a well known competition - maybe where you live.

I hope many of you visited: Stay Smart this summer with Bill Nye from my last blog - Summer interlude 
I want to encourage many ways to stay on top of learning during the fun-filled - but long - summer months.

Now on to my summer exploration
       One of my first surprises at South Carolina  Aquarium was a salt marsh display.  If you remember from my first blog, I love the water life on the pond I live on - recall the muscovy duck poem.  Well, imagine my thrill of having birds and turtles several feet away.  I was especially intrigued by the egrets and great blue herons. 

 Sea Turtle Rescue

       There is a sea turtle "hospital" in the basement of the South Carolina Aquarium with separate water tanks for each sea turtle.  Four major types are found on the Atlantic Ocean shores (all endangered). 
The most numerous are the loggerheads. There are several in the "hospital."  
       The most interesting is one that has part of its shell missing from a shark bite.  The smallest is the kemp ridley which gets caught up in fishing nets.  And then there is the green sea turtle which is pictured - and my personal favorite.  The leatherback is the largest - too large for the aquarium - and travels the furtherest.

     So, what do they eat?  A little girl next to me exclaimed, "Look, they like the broccoli ribs - just like me."  They were also eating lettuce. (This is a small turtle pictured - and difficult to see.)

     There are 2 books I would like suggest to look further at sea turtles.  
Go to "National Geographic Readers: Sea Turtles" page                                                                                           National Geographic Kids: Sea Turtles               
by Laura Marsh is a good introduction of the types of turtles and their life cycle.

I’ll Follow the Moon By Author Stephanie Lisa TaraI'll Follow the Moon 
       by Stephanie Lisa Tara is a charming picture book tracking the journey of a green sea turtle on his journey from his nest to the ocean.

I will close with my poetry - possible picture book???

A Tiny Surprise in the Sand

Buddy, just look at this long sandy beach,   
High crashing waves explode in our reach.

There’s Dad with a ball in his hand.   
He’s throwing it out in the sand.     

Buddy, run after the ball.
“Watch out for the waves,” I call.

A wave rushes in with a crash
Buddy leaps back with a splash.      

He finds something hard in the sand.
I scoop up the prize with my hand.

It’s a living sea turtle that’s tiny.       
It has a hard shell that is shiny.   
Its flippers are long and quite thick.     
I discover this turtle is quick.

It scoots off so fast through the sand,   
I must hurry to block with my hand.

Squawk!  A blue heron is hunting for prey.
It’s long stick-like legs are now strutting this way. 

Buddy barks at the heron and scares it away.
“Now what? Our turtle‘s in danger,” I say.

Dad says, “Let’s look for some seaweed.  
It’s just what this turtle will need.”

I say, “Buddy, let’s take a quick walk.
There’s seaweed that’s stuck on a rock.”

Turtle and seaweed go in my hat.
“I can’t wait until Mom checks out that!”   

“Look what we found in the sand. “
It’s long flippers are tickling my hand.

Mom looks at its body so tiny and wet.
“A sea turtle isn’t a pet!”

Babies must not leave their nests yet.
People and animals are a real threat.

They cross over the sand when its night.   
The moon and stars guide them with light.   

“Let’s enjoy and protect it today.  
Then, we’ll help him to get on his way. “

“We’ll walk him far out in the ocean.
The waves will then set him in motion.”    

Our turtle must swim very fast,  
And then he’ll find safety at last. 

By Joan Bock  
(No permission to copy)

         . . . . Until next time, Signing off,
                                                           Joan Bock