Beavertail ~ Rocky Shore

Classroom Activities
Focus Activities

(Gr. K - 3)


  • For students to become familiar with the concept of zonation.
  • For students to become familiar with the organisms they may find in the zones of the rocky shore field trip.
  • Photocopied pictures on index cards of FLORA and FAUNA commonly found in the zones at the rocky shore (see below: LIFE ZONES - INFO SHEET).
  • Rope (height of classroom wall)
  • Index cards with a zone name labeled on each
  • Butcher Paper tacked to classroom wall
  1. Hang butcher paper from ceiling to floor on a classroom wall.
  2. Hang a rope from the top of the butcher paper, at an angle to the floor, about 10 feet from the base of the wall.
  3. On the butcher paper, place the cards with the zone names in the correct zone order (top to bottom).
  4. Pass our creature cards to the students.
  5. By using the picture of the creature, have the students try to tape the creature in the correct zone on the wall.
  6. Discuss the environmental factors that would limit the habitat of each creature.

What Lives in the Life Zones of the Rocky Shore?
(Gr. 4 - 12)


  • Discover the life zones of the rocky shore.
  • Identify and place the flora and fauna in their life zones with the aid of a field guide.


  • 1 graphic organizer for each group member
  • 6 seashore field guides
  • 1 information sheet for each groups


  1. Assign one life zone to each member of a cooperative group.
  2. All students with the same life zone will meet in a "life zone" area of the room.
  3. Using field guides and the Life Zones Info. Sheet, students should become experts on this life zone including:
      a. location of the life zone
      b. flora and fauna located in that life zone
  4. Students should record on the graphic organizer: of the life zone
       b.flora and fauna of that life zone
  5. Students should reconvene in their original cooperative group and teach/ describe that life zone to the other members.
  6. All members of the group should completely fill out the graphic organizer with all of the zone information.

A. BLACK ZONE - This zone is beyond the zone of high tides and receives water only from rain or the salt water splashing against the rocks.
Flora: Blue-Green Algae, Lichen
Fauna: Sand Fleas

B. PERIWINKLE ZONE - This area receives very little water; sometimes contains upper level tide pools. This zone is sometimes nondescript since Periwinkles are mobile creatures.
Fauna: Periwinkle

C. BARNACLE ZONE - Land here is submerged at high tide. Organisms here must be able to survive without water between tides.
Fauna: Acorn Barnacle, Dog Whelk, Sea Urchin

D. ROCKWEED ZONE - This zone is covered with water most of the day.
Flora: Rockweed, Knotted Wrack
Fauna: Sea Star, Hermit Crab, Sea Anemone, Mummichog, Blue Mussel, Dog Whelk, Green Crab, Limpet

E. IRISH MOSS ZONE - Organisms here are exposed only at very low tides.
Flora: Irish Moss, Coralline Algae
Fauna: Hermit Crab, Sea Anemone, Mummichog, Blue Mussel, Sponges, Dog Whelk, Green Crab, Sea Urchin, Slipper Shell, Limpet

F. KELP ZONE - This area is always under water.
Flora: Sea Lettuce, Kelp
Fauna: Sea Star, Hermit Crab, Mummichog, Sponges, Green Crab, Sea Urchin, Slipper Shell, Limpet

Go to LIFE ZONES Template

(Gr. 7 - 12)


  • For students to use field guides as a research tool.
  • For students to acquire more background on the flora and fauna to be seen at the field site.


  • Pencil and Paper
  • Field Guides


  1. Assign one of the organisms listed on the LIFE ZONES INFO. SHEET to each student or pair of students.
  2. Students are to use the common name of the organism to research the following:
       a.scientific name
  3. Students are to record info. on their organism on one page.
  4. Compile all pages and create classroom field guides for the class to use on their field trip visit to the rocky shore.

Reflection Activities

Go to Rocky Shore Matching Game (Gr. 1 - 6)

A Day in the Life
(Gr. K-12)


  • Expose students to lives of rocky shore organisms.
  • Foster appreciation for wildlife.


  • Pencil and paper


  1. Each student imagines what it would be like to be a particular rocky shore animal or plant for a day
  2. Write a story about a typical day in the life of the chosen organism.
      Leading questions:
       What is your biggest worry for the day?
       How and where will you find your food?
  3. Alternates:
      One student starts a story about an organism, each student adds something new to it. Pass paper around room to create a story.   OR Each student begins a story on a different organism. At given signals each student moves to another paper.

Back to Back


  • Improve students' descriptive skills.
  • Review creatures found on field trip.


  • Marine organisms (collected on trip)
  • paper and pencil


  1. Students sit in pairs, back to back, one with a paper and pencil the other with a marine organism.
  2. The student with the objects describes it and the other student tries to draw it without seeing or knowing what it is.

Rocky Shore Table of Contents
Physical Characteristics ~ History
Land Use ~ Maps ~ Classroom Activities
Resources & References