How to Introduce Toddlers to the Variety of Life in Earth’s Oceans
The Earth’s oceans cover about 70 percent of the planet’s surface, yet many people do not know much about this incredible marine environment. Toddlers and young children are especially curious about the creatures of the sea. Each of these four tips will help you to introduce your toddler to the variety of life in Earth’s oceans.
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Getting Books from the Library
The library is a free resource that is ideal for learning about many different subjects, including the variety of life in Earth’s oceans. If you are unsure of which books to choose for toddler, speak with one of the children’s librarians. These library staff members are familiar with the development of literary skills and can help you to select books that will educate and entertain your child. While at the library, consider perusing their digital media section, such as their DVD and Blu-Ray discs. You may be able to borrow an animated or real-life film about the creatures living in the ocean. National Geographic for Kids, NOVA and other media companies produce a wide variety of content to help your child learn about the oceans.
Visiting an Aquarium
Visiting an aquarium is an ideal way to teach your child about all of the things living in the Earth’s oceans. The marine biologists and docents at the aquarium can answer every question that your child can think up. Interactive displays engage toddlers and spark their natural curiosity. Many aquariums have displays that are at a child’s eye level, which makes it easier for your child to see the brightly colored corals, tropical fish, sea horses, and even the jellyfish. Some aquariums in Las Vegas might have a gift shop with educational materials and fun items so that your child can continue learning about ocean life at home. Be sure to check the aquarium’s daily schedule to see if you can watch the feeding of the sharks, divers interacting with the fish or any other special demonstrations.
Going to the Zoo
Going to the zoo is another helpful way to teach your child about the variety of living things in the Earth’s oceans. Many zoos have animals such as penguins, manatees or sea lions that live in the ocean. Zoos may also have displays about the environmental issues surrounding oceans, such as the coral reefs, plastic garbage floating in the water and the over-fishing of certain types of animals. Even if your zoo does not have ocean animals, the docents and biologists may be able to answer your child’s questions about why the oceans are important and what lives in them.
Setting Up a Saltwater Fish Tank
If you have the time, patience and some extra money, consider setting up a saltwater fish tank in your home. A saltwater tank requires more maintenance than a freshwater tank, but it will allow you to enjoy some tropical fish any time of the day or night. Your child can learn about what is required for a fish to survive, such as clean water, oxygen and food. As your child grows, he or she could assist you in the cleaning and maintenance of the saltwater fish tank. Visits to the pet supplies store will also help your child to learn more about saltwater fish and related animals in the ocean.
By introducing your toddler to the spectacular amount and variety of ocean life at a young age, you can instill a life-long love of nature and the environment. From seeing these creatures up-close and in real-life, your toddler can gain an appreciation for all of the different living things. Using books and speaking with marine life experts can help your child to continue learning about the Earth’s oceans.
Bio: Rachelle Wilber is a freelance writer living in the San Diego, California area. She graduated from San Diego State University with her Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism and Media Studies. She tries to find an interest in all topics and themes, which prompts her writing. When she isn’t on her porch writing in the sun, you can find her shopping, at the beach, or at the gym. Follow her on Twitter and Facebook: @RachelleWilber; https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100009221637700