Thursday, August 18, 2011

Ocean Activities: The Ocean Zones

The ocean is divided into different layers. The zones differ in temperature, water pressure and available nutrients.  Marine organisms live in different zones according to the amount of sunlight that reaches there. More than 90% of marine life lives in the Sunlit Zone.

I made cards of the various ocean zones for the kids, cut them out and laminated them together.


This is a picture of the original activity I made for the kids, but I couldn't share it publicly because I wasn't sure of the copyright status of some of the pictures I used. 

 Recently, I made new animal sorting cards for the ocean zones and that is now available. The pictures I used for this new packet were either purchased (from or have a creative commons license.

 Here is more about the new activity packet I made:

Animals of the different Ocean Zone Layers:
  • Sunlight Zone - Blue Marlin, Sperm Whale, Grey Reef Shark, Plankton, plankton, sea stars, jellyfish, sea urchins, sea turtles, dolphins, seals, sharks, sting rays, sand dollars, fish 
  • Twilight Zone - Octopus, Squid, Deep diving whales, Hatchetfish, Viperfish, Cuttlefish, deep diving whales
  • Midnight Zone - Angler Fish, Snipe Eel, Lizard Fish, Sea Cucumber, Lanternfish, Sea Cucumber
  • Trench Zone - mussels, crabs, tube worms, viperfish
This is a glimpse of the new Ocean Zone Layers Activity Cards:

Layers of the Ocean Activity Packet: There are two Ocean Zone Activities.   It includes the ocean animal sorting cards and zone cards that you see above.  And it also includes an Ocean Depths activity, which covers things like--how deep was the deepest scuba dive, the Titanic wreckage, the deepest recorded fish, or how far down is the Mariana Trench.  Students can cut out pictures of these and place them at the appropriate depth. (Also in the packet, you'll find this same activity in meters.)

The Ocean Zones Activity Packet is now available for $3.00.
Once you pay for this packet, you will immediately receive a link to download this file (which will open in a browser window).  You will also receive an email from Sendowl (the service I use), which will have a link you can click on to download the Layers of the Ocean Activities pdf.  (It will say, “You can download your digital products…” with a clickable link.)  Of course, if you have any issues just email me at — liesl at homeschoolden dot com.  You can also reach me by using the contact form on the blog or can reach me over at our Homeschool Den Facebook Page. ~Liesl


More Ocean Curriculum...

Ocean Packet: We have been studying the Ocean again in the spring of 2016.  Our 65+ page Ocean Unit (see details about our ocean worksheets and materials here) is now available!
  • Ocean Unit: Marine Habitats, water form words (bay, strait, fjord, etc.), tides and currents, salinity, features of the ocean floor, Ocean Life:
    • Special Body Features
    • Fish Body Shape and Movement
    • Biological Interactions: Mutualism and Commensalism in the Ocean
    • Deep Sea Life – Bioluminescence, Anglerfish

BUNDLE: Ocean Unit Packet AND Layers of the Ocean Activities Packet (above)


Here are some of our other ocean materials:

Ocean Unit Activities for Kids

Some of our activities included:

 Ocean Animal Preschool Game


  1. Hi. Thanks for sharing all your resources. I would love a copy of the animals to sort. We finished our ocean unit, but I think we will revisit it next year on a deeper (forgive the pun) level. If you could email it to me at thegirlwhopaintedtrees at gmail dot com
    Thank you!

  2. I sent off a copy. Let me know if you didn't receive it. ~Liesl

  3. I'd love a copy of these ocean animal layer cards! I can't believe I didn't take advantage of all the ocean/marine life lessons I could have done in the year that we lived at the beach...oh, well. We'll just have to learn it on vacation, I guess. ;)
    Thanks so much!

  4. Can you please email me the ocean animal layer cards. Thanks so much. khoke "at" cfl "dot" rr "dot" com


  5. My daughter is obsessed with the ocean and would love this activity. Can you please email me the ocean animal layer cards? Thanks so much!
    jilljeanine11 "at"


  6. I am going to email you about the animal photos but wanted to mention it here as well. THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR ALL OF YOUR WORK!!!!

  7. This is so cool! Thank you for sharing! My daughter would love the animal cards. laurajrobey (at) gmail (dot)com

    Thanks you for sharing!!!!!

  8. Hi this is great!!! Can you please send me a copy of the animal photos. thanks


  9. could you email it to me as well?
    audiolady @

    Thanks for your hard work!

  10. This is really a neat thing! Thank you for sharing. I would love a set of the animal photos as we are just starting our ocean unit! Thank you again.

  11. Could you please email me the picture cards too? Thank you Thank

  12. Hi,
    I love your oceans unit study! Can you e-mail the info for the animal cards?
    Thank you so much, Emily

  13. Hi. I would love a copy of these ocean cards. Could you please email them to me at Thank you so much!

  14. These cards are beautiful! Can you please email them to me. I just emailed you! Thanks, Becky

  15. Hi I would love to receive a copy of your cards. Can you please email to Thank you so much!!

  16. I would also love a copy of your ocean cards. Thanks so much! My email is Thanks!

  17. I just emailed you for a copy of your ocean cards. Thanks so much for this!

  18. I would love a copy of your ocean cards. Theschreibers @
    Thanks! Carrie

  19. I would LOVE a copy of the 'Layers of the Ocean Animals' set. couponlover323 at gmail dot com


  20. I would love a copy of the Layers of the Ocean Animals cards. They look gorgeous!

    Thank you so much for sharing these.

    lita46953 at gmail dot com

  21. Wow friend, am so inspired by your work. Would love to do these with my kids before summer is over. Thanks!


  22. I would love a set of the ocean animal cards. thank you!

  23. I sent you an e-mail and I would love those animal sorting cards for the three ocean zone. Thank you!!!

  24. I would also love a copy if your animal sorting cards, they look wonderful. Thank you in advance

  25. I would also like a set of the ocean animal sorting cards. My email request came back,. so I am leaving it here. Thank you!

  26. Thank you so much for sharing this. I would love a copy of your ocean zones work. It will go perfectly with our studies. Thank you