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ERIC Number: EJ857959
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 8
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0036-8121
Growing up in the Ocean: Complex Life Cycles of Common Marine Invertebrates
Bennett, Katie; Hiebert, Laurel
Science Activities: Classroom Projects and Curriculum Ideas, v46 n4 p18-25 Win 2010
Most people are familiar with the concept that animals come in all shapes and sizes and that the body plan of some animals can completely transform during their lifetime. Well-known examples of such complex life cycles of terrestrial animals include butterflies and frogs. Many people are unaware, however, that complex life cycles are exceedingly prevalent in marine environments. Marine invertebrates, such as sea urchins, sea stars, and crabs, all have a microscopic pelagic larval stage that looks nothing at all like the familiar adult form. The authors have developed a lesson to teach students about complex life cycles using crab larvae and adult crabs. This lesson allows 3rd- to 6th-grade students to compare and contrast body plans while learning about adaptations the larvae and adults have made to their respective habitats. Throughout the lesson, students practice skills important for scientific inquiry: making observations, drawing what they see, asking and answering questions, and learning to use scientific tools such as microscopes. (Contains 11 figures and 4 online resources.)
Heldref Publications. 1319 Eighteenth Street NW, Washington, DC 20036-1802. Tel: 800-365-9753; Tel: 202-296-6267; Fax: 202-293-6130; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Guides - Classroom - Teacher; Journal Articles
Education Level: Elementary Education; Grade 3; Grade 4; Grade 5; Grade 6
Audience: Teachers
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A