Oceans Day 3: Cartilaginous Fish

Cartilaginous Fish (Sharks, Rays, Eels)

Today we learned about cartilaginous fish such as sharks, rays, and eels.  J loved learning about these fish, especially the sharks.

Read: Pages 18-19 & 52-55 in Oceans by Johanna Rizzo.

Discuss: Sharks are one of the fastest fish in the sea. Sharks do not have bones like fish, instead their skeletons are made of cartilage. Cartilage is lighter and more flexible than bones. There are over 250 species of sharks in the world. Shark skin is covered with tiny scales that feel like sandpaper. Sharks have a first dorsal fin, second dorsal fin, anal fish, pelvic fin, pectoral fin, gill slits, nostrils, eyes, mouth, and spiracle.

Shark Diagram

I printed out the Shark Diagram from homeschool share for J to label the parts of a shark.

Shark Teeth

We looked at a sharks tooth that we got from a relative in Florida as we  read a book about sharks.

Shark Jello


  • Shark Gummies

  • Blue Jello


  1. Make the jello according to the directions.
  2. Pour half of the liquid jello into a clear bowl and let it stiffen up in the refrigerator.
  3. Put in the shark gummies and add the rest of the liquid jello.
  4. Put in the refrigerator to stiffen up.IMG_3063

Double Digit Addition

J practiced his Addition of Double Digits on this fun hammerhead shark printout.

Manta Ray

Sharks Word Search

I found a Sharks Word Search for us to work on together.

Electric Eel

 J made colored some Electric eelsin Amazing Creatures of the Sea by Faber Castell. IMG_3161

Greater Than Less Than Sharks

  • 2 paper grater than and less than sharks
  • Goldfish crackers
  1. Make sure the mouth of one shark has a grater than sign for the mouth and the other shark has a less than sign for his mouth.
  2. Put a couple of goldfish crackers on one side of the table an a different amount on the other side of the table. Let the child choose which shark will eat the fish (grater than or less than). The shark always eats the most fish.IMG_3052 IMG_3051
Shark Surprise


  • Colored pencils or fine-point markers
  • Index cards
  • Books or magazines with pictures or illustrations of fish


  1. Look through the books or magazines and choose fish that you would like to draw. Then draw that fish on two index cards. Explain to children that they are making a matching pair of cards so the pictures on the cards should match as closely as possible. Then have them carefully label their pictures with the fish name.
  2. Now draw one shark on one index card and label it too.
  3. Tell children they are ready to play Shark Surprise! Explain that the idea of the game is to collect as many pairs as possible and not get caught holding the shark card (like Old Maid). After they have shuffled the cards, deal out all the cards face down. Tell children to look at their cards carefully, find any matching pairs and read aloud the name of the fish on those pairs before setting them aside. Then have the child to the left of the dealer in each group begin play by drawing a card from the player on his or her left. If the player draws a matching card, he or she must read aloud the name of the fish on the card, and set aside the pair. Play continues to the left. The game ends when all the pairs are “caught” and someone is left holding the shark card.IMG_3054

Drawing a Shark

J drew a Ray and Shark on pages 10 and 26 from It’s Fun to Draw Sea Creatures by Mark BerginIMG_3074 Dictionary

J wanted to learn how to use the dictionary so he decided to look up the word “stingray”.IMG_3595
Pet the Sting Rays

We went to Caribbean Cove at the STL zoo to pet the sting rays and sharks with cousins.IMG_1584 IMG_1592 IMG_1600

Ocean Unit Study

Day 1: Earth’s Oceans

Day 2: Fish

Day 3: Cartilaginous Fish (Sharks, Rays & Eels)

Day 4: Aquatic Mammals (Whales & Dolphins)

Day 5: Jellyfish

Day 6: Cephalopods (Octopus & Squid)

Day 7: Marine Reptiles (Sea Turtles)

Day 8: Crustaceans (Crabs)

Day 9: The Beach