All You Need Is Rope

And some kids with big imaginations.

Many of the world’s largest creatures are found in our vast ocean. In fact, the largest animal known to have ever existed is the blue whale – growing over 30 meters and weighing up to a whopping 200 tons! That is almost of the length of 3 school buses and the weight of 15 school buses. 

marine science, whales, ocean

It can be a challenge to wrap your head around how large the world’s giant animals actually are, especially if you have only seen these animals, including blue whales, whale sharks, giant squid and others, in pictures or videos. 

So we developed a new KELP (Kids Environmental Lesson Plan) activity that helps students gain perspective on how long some of the ocean’s giant creatures can grow. It's called "How Long Am I" and can be downloaded for free here! All you need is a long rope (120 feet to be exact) and some kids that want to see how big these ocean creatures can grow.

The students can use one length of rope and place tags marking the appropriate lengths for all of the above sea creatures. Or they can use separate ropes for each animal. Once all of the tags are on the rope, or all of the ropes representing different animals are stretched out, have the students determine how many classmates head to foot would it take to be the same length as all of the sea creatures. You can also have a follow up discussion about what size the ocean animals are comparable to, for example a school bus.

We tested this activity out down in Grenada. The students were in awe of how long a humpback whale, which can be found in their waters, can actually grow. It was almost as long as their school! 

Head to our KELP page for other fun activities and games focused on marine science.