One of our favorite subjects in our homeschool is science. Our favorite science curriculum is Apologia. I love that it is a creation based science curriculum that come with lesson plans, fun project ideas and lots of wonderful information for learning. Recently we completed Apologia’s Zoology 2 Swimming Creatures of the Fifth day. Whenever we use Apologia for science we also like to use their Notebooking Journals. They are a great way to add more hands-on and reinforce what the student has learned.
Because it is a creation based science perspective we learn from the lens of the the Lord. It truly is amazing to see God’s creation up close and learn about all the intricacies of God’s design. I learned some things throughout this course too!
One of the suggested projects to complete at the end of the year was an Ocean Box. Similar to a diorama (do they even do those in public school anymore?) it incorporated a lot of hand made items in a box to create a scene. They suggested that after the student finished each lesson they created 1-3 swimming creatures that they had just learned about out of clay. What child wouldn’t want to get to work with clay after each lesson? Over the course of the year it was so rewarding to see his Ocean Box coming together as he added each new animals. My eight year old dug into this assignment and was in heaven.
You can see his finished Ocean Box above with all of his cute little creatures swimming around.
We used a normal shipping box that we covered with blue construction paper on the outside and inside. Corbin also wanted to cover a little bit on top of the box with tan because he wanted a shore for some animals. I also had some blue cellophane, the kind that you use for gift basket making, and we used that to make the inside bottom of the box have more of a water affect.
In creating the animals, we started by using crayola gray modeling clay and wanting to paint it or mix other clay with color into it. The Narwhal and Whale were made with it. It ended up that these guys were a bit too heavy and the clay didn’t model very well. We decided to take a trip to our local hobby store to see if we could find something better. We did end up finding a clay called Cloud Clay and this was an outstanding material to work with in building this ocean box.
It was a little bit pricey but with a coupon it worked out just fine. Plus it was worth it since this was going to be a year long project. We ended up buying two different packages with different color options.
For hanging the animals we used sewing thread and hot glue for the lighter clay animals and straight sewing pins for the heavier animals made with the heavy clay. The hot glue, with the sewing thread and the lighter animals worked out best. We also used hot glue to adhere some of the animals to the side and top of the Ocean Box. You will also see that he used toothpicks in some of the animals. I thought he had a great idea!
I loved to see Corbin’s creativity throughout the year. I was proud of him because he really did a great job sculpting all of the animals and applying the things he learned about where in the ocean each sea creature lived. Aside from the covering of the box and getting help with hanging some of the creatures, he did the entire project himself.
Here are some of the animals he created:
School of Fish
Mosasaur (we studied Primeval Reptiles)
Clam (with a pearl of course)
At the end of the year Corbin had a beautiful work of art to display and be proud of. He learned so much and has always had a love for animals. I highly recommend Apologia Science and if you happen to do Zoology 2 I also recommend taking the time to do the Ocean Box if it is something you think your child would enjoy doing.
Praise the Lord from the earth, You great sea creatures and all the depths; Fire and hail, snow and clouds; Stormy wind, fulfilling His word; Mountains and all hills; Fruitful trees and all cedars; Beasts and all cattle; Creeping things and flying fowl;
But now ask the beasts, and they will teach you; And the birds of the air, and they will tell you; Or speak to the earth, and it will teach you; And the fish of the sea will explain to you. Who among all these does not know that the hand of the Lord has done this, In whose hand is the life of every living thing, And the breath of all mankind?