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2 INTRODUCTION Planet Earth: Shallow Seas 4-D is adapted from the highly-acclaimed BBC series, Planet Earth. This resource guide provides background on what you and your students will see in the film, plus some pre- and post-viewing activities you can use with your students in the classroom. This guide is correlated with the National Science Education Standards. PHOTOGRAPHY Doug Perrine/Naturepl.com 1

3 TEACHER BACKGROUND Water covers the majority of the Earth s surface. From the deepest, darkest ocean depths to the shallow seas along the edges of the continents. Here the oceans are relatively shallow with depths to 200 meters (600 feet). The shallow seas cover an estimated 8% of the world s oceans, but the majority of ocean creatures live here. These are so biologically productive for two reasons. First, since the water is shallow, sunlight can penetrate through almost the entire water column. Second, nutrient-rich waters from the oceans depths rise up into the shallows and are mixed by currents and waves. The combination of light plus nutrients starts an incredible food web that supports countless sea creatures. The coral reef is one example of an ecosystem found in the shallow seas. Coral reefs are located in shallow waters where sunlight can penetrate, and the water is warm and clear. The reef itself is actually a colony of small coral animals called polyps. Each polyp is encased in a hard external skeleton. It reaches its tentacles, equipped with stinging cells, out into the water to capture its prey. Algae live inside the polyp and give the coral their bright colors. The coral provides a safe habitat or home for the algae. Approximately 40% of the world s human population lives along the coasts. As a result, the shallow seas are heavily impacted by what we put into the ocean and take out of it. Pollution, sediment, and excess nutrients run-off the land and harm marine ecosystems. Even people living far from the ocean can have an impact when litter and other things discarded by people are carried hundreds of miles by streams and rivers or by the wind eventually ending up in the ocean. 2

4 TEACHER BACKGROUND cont d We can all do our part. Simple things like: 1. Put litter in its place, don t drop it on the ground 2. Recycle and/or reduce your use of paper, cans, bottles, and plastics 3. Don t pour anything down storm drains, they eventually lead to waterways and the oceans 4. If you own a yard, plant only plants native to your area that require less fertilizer and water, and don t over-fertilize your lawn. Excess fertilizer can run off your lawn causing problems in the water 5. Eat sustainable seafood. Avoid species that are over-fished and depleted. NATIONAL SCIENCE EDUCATION STANDARDS This Resource Guide has been correlated with one or more of the following National Science Education Standards for grades K-3: Life Science (Standard C) Characteristics of organisms Life cycle of organisms Organisms and their environment PHOTOGRAPHY Georgette Douwma 3

5 PRE-SHOW ACTIVITY MEET THE SEA STARS DIRECTIONS TO TEACHERS This activity introduces the students to some of the sea life they will see in the Shallow Seas 4-D film. The Meet the Sea Stars readings can be read aloud or assigned individually, depending on the level of your students. The coloring pages can be photocopied and distributed to your class. In the last section, ask the students to think about animals that are familiar or live in their neighborhood. Write the list of names on the board. Ask students to choose one of the ocean animals they have colored, and compare and contrast it to an animal from the list. Use the chart below as a class or individually as a graphic organizer. Ask the students: How are the animals alike? How are they different? For younger students you may want to do this as a class. DIRECTIONS TO STUDENTS Many different kinds of animals live in the ocean. Read about some of these animals below. Look for these animals in the Shallow Seas 4-D film. ANIMAL READINGS HUMPBACK WHALE Humpback whales grow to 15 meters (about 50 feet) long. They live in all the oceans of the world. Humpback whales eat small animals called krill. Krill are like shrimp. Humpbacks catch their food by gulping huge amounts of water. Then they push the water out of their mouth. The krill are caught in their mouth and swallowed whole. Humpback whales blow bubble nets to round up their food. A humpback whale can eat 3 tons of krill per day. FUN FACTS 4 FUN FACTS A baby humpback whale drinks 120 gallons of its mother s milk every day. Humpback whales can live for up to 70 years.

6 PRE-SHOW ACTIVITY Cont d BOTTLENOSE DOLPHIN Bottlenose dolphins are small whales. Dolphins are also mammals. Mammals are animals that breathe air with lungs. Their babies are born live and drink milk from their mother. All mammals have hair covering their bodies. Dolphins can ride the waves near shore in search of fish to eat. They catch their food using teeth. Dolphins swallow their food whole. FUN FACTS The tail of a dolphin is called a fluke. There are about 70 different kinds of dolphins in the world. FUR SEALS Sea lions belong to a group of animals called marine mammals. Whales, dolphins, sea otters and even polar bears are also marine mammals. These animals have a thick layer of fat called blubber. The blubber keeps the animal warm in the cold water. Fur seals feed on fish and squid. FUN FACTS A sea lion can hold its breath underwater for up to one hour. They can swim at speeds up to 15 miles per hour. 5

7 PRE-SHOW ACTIVITY Cont d COLORING PAGES Choose one of the animals. Color it in. 6

8 PRE-SHOW ACTIVITY Cont d COLORING PAGES 7

9 PRE-SHOW ACTIVITY Cont d COLORING PAGES 8

10 PRE-SHOW ACTIVITY Cont d ANIMALS IN YOUR NEIGHBORHOOD Think about an animal that lives in your neighborhood. Your teacher will list your ideas on the board. Choose an animal from the list. Write the name of the animal atthe top of the column on the left. Choose an ocean animal you colored. Write the name of the animal at the top of the column on the right. Answer the questions for each animal. Write your answers in the space. My Neighborhood Animal My Ocean Animal Where does the animal live? How does the animal move? What does the animal eat? 9

11 POST-SHOW ACTIVITY SEE THE SEA HORSE The pygmy sea horse is the world s smallest sea horse. It is only 2 centimeters (about 1 inch) high. It blends in with the coral reef. Its color makes it very hard to see. Draw a line connecting the dots. Can you find the sea horse in this picture?

12 ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS & RESOURCES Planet Earth: Shallow Seas is a BBC/Discovery Channel/NHK coproduction in association with the CBC and are made available through a partnership with CineMuse. This companion piece to the film Planet Earth: Shallow Seas 4-D Experience was created by Educational Consultant Joe Harber for SimEx-Iwerks Entertainment. The following resources were used to develop this Learning Guide. Educators may reproduce these materials for students. Design & illustration by Maggie Ziemirska, SimEx-Iwerks Entertainment Graphic Design Department. 11

13 12 NOTES

14 ENTERTAINMENT

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