Tuesday, July 26, 2011

A Closer Look At Seashells

Continuing on with our water/ocean theme of study this week, I thought we should examine "A's" extensive seashell collection. Many of the seashells my family or I have collected over the years at the Oregon Coast or traveling. Some of the more exotic shells have been gifts. I thought we should start by sorting them to get a better look. Plus sorting items is teaches great problem solving and analytical skills.
Cone Shaped
Clam Shells
"B" wanted to help sort too!
 I then told "A" about the two types of seashells: gastropods and bivalves. Bivalve seashells are shells that have hinges to hold them together. Gastropods don't have hinges. I then had "A" sort into the two categories.
Then we did some research in books to see if we could find what animals would have lived in "A's" seashells. The books we read (all I recommend):

What we discovered in our readings: mostly that we had clam, mollusk, sea snail, and hermit crab shells. It was so exciting to find a picture in a book that matched a shell in "A's" collection!

I couldn't resist following up the learning with some crafting. Pink and Green Mama thought up the idea to have her little one paint some of her white clam shells. Anyone who has a seashell collection knows that you can have TONS of the same white clam shell. It can get pretty boring, so why not liven them up a bit. In her blog she had them paint with watercolors. We tried it, and although it was fun, the shells turned out really light. Pink and Green Mama must have special watercolors because ours just didn't have the colors her's did. So I decided why not also take some of my permanent markers and decorate them that way as well. Now we have some special colorful clam shells to brighten up the collection!
Beautiful but hoping for more vibrant colors (they even dried lighter than this)
Permanent Marker is so much messier than watercolors
Permanent Marker Shells on Top/Watercolor Shells on Bottom

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