KELP

Kids Environmental Lesson Plans 

KELP are free, downloadable marine science activities that encourage curiosity in kids and helpl them explore their surroundings. Sailors for the Sea collaborates with leading marine research and education institutions to create these dynamic and relevant lesson plans that address important ocean health issues including plastic pollution, overfishing and climate change.

With simple materials and minimal preparation, the activities are ideal for any educator to implement. Use the kits when weather conditions aren’t suitable or in educational settings to promote awareness of ocean health issues. Sailors for the Sea's KELP Program will inspire them to know and love the ocean before we ask them to save it.

Register for KELP

 

All ages
Beaches, Bays & Rivers

A fun scavenger hunt that gives students understanding of what can be found on beaches, giving an introduction to beach ecology and the role of manmade objects.

Ages 9 to 12
Beaches, Bays & Rivers

Students create mini-coastal environments and introduce nutrients to see what happens in the estuaries where fresh and salt water meet.

Ages 9 to 12
Beaches, Bays & Rivers

Students learn about the water cycle and the principles of filtering water by designing and building their own filters, then testing them with "dirty water."

Ages 9 to 12
Beaches, Bays & Rivers

A hands on activity that illustrates the different sources of sand including biological, geological and man-made.

Ages 12 and up
Beaches, Bays & Rivers

This activity demonstrates Thermohaline Circulation throughout the world's oceans and the relative densities of cold and warm waters.

Ages 12 and up
Beaches, Bays & Rivers

Students create a simple scientific instrument and learn about the role of sediment in their local waters.

Ages 12 and up
Beaches, Bays & Rivers

A fun board game designed to learn the three ways rocks can form.

Ages 9 to 12
Beaches, Bays & Rivers

Students create a watershed model using a plastic shower curtain, a spray bottle and themselves!

Ages 9 to 12
Beaches, Bays & Rivers

Students construct a beach in a pan and investigate the effects of wind and waves on beach shape

Ages 6 to 12
Beaches, Bays & Rivers

Using materials and sand found on the beach, kids can create pieces of art

Ages 6 to 12
Beaches, Bays & Rivers

Learn about what is found in your coastal environment with this fun matching game.

Ages 6 to 9
Catching Fish

A creative game that shows the effects of longline fishing on the health of the ocean ecosystem.

Ages 9 and up
Catching Fish

A simple matching game for visually identifying fish and gaining an understanding of which can be sustainably harvested.

All ages
Living Underwater

An activity that plays with light at different depths of the ocean and discusses adaptations organisms have made for different light conditions.

Ages 9 to 12
Living Underwater

A hands on activity that illustrates how marine creatures have adapted to survive the extreme conditions between the rocky shoreline tide marks

All ages
Living Underwater

A fun game teaching students how fish and other ocean creatures camouflage into their surroundings.

Ages 6 to 9
Living Underwater

Students create a "blubber glove" to mimic the importance of blubber to whales living in frigid water.

Ages 6 to 9
Living Underwater

An activity that demonstrates how baleen whales, such as Right Whales, use skim feeding to capture their prey.

Ages 6 to 9
Living Underwater

Students build monoculars to view their surroundings from the prespectivie of a whale. 

All ages
Pollution & Marine Debris

A game of freeze tag that gives an understanding of the interaction of oyster reefs and toxic waste (pollution) in the water.

All ages
Pollution & Marine Debris

A tag inspired game that demonstrates how plastics and the chemicals in plastics are biomagnified to reach our dinner plates.

All ages
Pollution & Marine Debris

Students illustrate the effects of the land use in a watershed by simulating development of their own riverfront property. 

Ages 12 and up
Pollution & Marine Debris

This activity uses an interactive narrative to illustrate the different sources of pollution, historic and modern, to a body of water.

Ages 9 to 12
Pollution & Marine Debris

Students carry out a beach transect, learning about the prevalence and sources of plastic pollution in the oceans. 

Ages 9 to 12
Pollution & Marine Debris

In this simulation, students are challenged to find and remove a baking soda contaminant from a plastic shoebox filled with damp sand

All ages
Pollution & Marine Debris

In this eye-opening activity, students discover how long it takes for different materials to degrade by putting items (i.e. orange peel, plastic straw) along a timeline. 

Ages 9 to 12
Aquatic Animals

Students learn about the variation of size and type of marine organisms in the local marine and freshwater environments by building dip and plankton nets.

Ages 12 and up
Aquatic Animals

Students create a cutout model of a clam to investigate the anatomy and physiology of these animals.

All ages
Aquatic Animals

Students will learn about the anatomy of coral and the unique symbiotic relationship between corals and zooxanthellae by building an edible coral polyp.

All ages
Aquatic Animals

Students build a globe to demonstrate a mass coral spawning event.

All ages
Aquatic Animals

Students create plankton with craft materials and race them in a large container of water. Slowest plankton wins!

All ages
Aquatic Animals

Students will learn about the importance of oysters to estuarine ecosystems and to the community with live oysters. 

Ages 6 to 9
Aquatic Animals

Through a "musical chairs"-like game, learn about hermit crabs and the challenges they face when they need to find a new shell home

Ages 6 to 12
Aquatic Animals

With just a simple rope, students can gain perspecitive on how big some of our ocean's largest animals are. 

All ages
Food Chains

A game of Jenga that demonstrates the marine food web and the impacts humans have on the food web.

All ages
Food Chains

Students identify what kind of consumer their marine animal is by examining the prey items they find in a Jell-O filled "stomach".

Ages 12 and up
Climate Change

An interactive game where students cycle as carbon between the living and nonliving parts of the ecosystem.

Ages 9 to 12
Climate Change

Students figure out what season it is based on maps of sea surface temperature and phytoplankton growth. 

Ages 12 and up
Climate Change

Which type of ice causes a rise in sea level when it melts: formations on land, like glaciers, or formations in the water, like icebergs?

 

Ages 9 to 12
Chemistry of the Sea

An interactive activity demonstrating the effects of ocean acidification on shelled marine organisms, the ocean food web and to humans.

Ages 12 and up
Chemistry of the Sea

Students use thier own exhaled breath and a red cabbage pH indicator to visualize how our oceans are becoming more acidic. 

Ages 6 to 12
Chemistry of the Sea

Learn why the ocean is salty and why it's easier to float in seawater.

All Ages
Ocean Fun Packs

Through word searches, matching and other fun games learn about these bustling cities of marine life and how to protect them. 

All Ages
Ocean Fun Packs

Learn about our polar regions' unique habitat and wildlife through crossword puzzles, word searches and other fun activities.