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Ocean Themed Activities for Preschool


Your preschool and kindergarten-aged children will love learning all about the ocean. These ocean-themed activities are perfect for spring and summer. Use these activities in a traditional school or homeschool setting!

This Pinterest image says "preschool & kindergarten ocean activities" there is a collage of 4 pictures above the words.  The top left is an ocean suncatcher.  The top right is tessellations of a crab.  The bottom left shows commotion in the ocean reading response.  The bottom right shows a fish name craft

Do you want all the activities in this blog post? Check out the ocean unit here.

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Read About the Ocean

This is a Pinterest pin for preschool ocean themed reading activities.  The image shows the summer at the seashore retelling worksheet

We read 5 books about the ocean. For each of the books, we did 5 reading lessons, one for each day of the week.

The image shows a child holding a crayon drawing a picture of the problem and solution in the story Swimmy by Lio Lionni

We kicked off this ocean unit by reading the book Swimmy by Leo Lionni. After finishing the book we talked about the problem and solution in the story. Next, I had my kids draw the problem and solution and explain their images.

The next day we read Summer at the Seashore by Sue Tarsky. After reading this book the kids cut out the retelling pieces and pasted them onto the worksheet in the correct order. This book is great because it is a counting book!

This image shows a pair of scissors lying on top of the Summer at the Seashore retelling worksheet.  The student pasted all the images in the correct order onto the paper.
This worksheet shows a student drawing with a crayon for poem 2

Our next reading skill was inferences. We read the book Commotion in the Ocean by Giles Andreae. This is a poetry book. The kids had to infer what each poem was about and draw their answers in the boxes as we read.

Next, we talked about vocabulary. We read aloud What Lives in a Shell? by Kathleen Weidner Zoehfeld. After reading the kids drew an image for each ocean-themed vocabulary word.

What lives in a shell vocabulary booklet is shown with crayons coming in from the side of the image
O emergent reader is on the desk.  The page on the left says "My alphabet reader Oo" and the page on the right says "This is the ocean."  Both pages have an image of waves on them.

The final reading activity for our ocean unit was an O alphabet emergent reader. The kids read the words on the page and pointed to each word as they read.

Preschool Ocean Themed Literacy Activities

Pinterest Pin for ocean themed literacy activities.  On the image is a cover the letter image.

The first ocean themed literacy activity that we did was sand letter writing. We poured sand into a shallow tray and had students pull the printed letter cards. They would say the name of each letter and trace the letter into the sand. This is the sand we used. It comes in many colors. You can use any shallow tray or buy a letter-writing tray like this one. Another great alternative to a letter tray is a pencil box, like this, simply shut the lid and store it away for next time!

The image shows red and blue sand in a shallow tray.  There is a sand bucket card with the letter "S" printed on it.  The letter "S" is drawn into the sand.
The image shows a child holding a blue paper fish with the letter "Y" on it.  They are using star erasers to cover the letter "Y" on the worksheet underneath.

Our next literacy activity for our ocean unit was a cover the letter. The kids picked up printed letter cards, said the name of the letter, and located the upper-case partner on the worksheet. We covered them using mini erasers but you could use dot markers, stickers, etc.

Wednesday I set up an ocean write the room for the kids. I placed ocean words on cards around the room. The kids had to find them and copy the words onto their recording sheets.

This image shows a write the room worksheet on a clipboard with a pencil laid on top.  The card for the word fish is in the corner.
A magnetic children's fishing pole is picking up a fish with an image on it and placing it on to the word rhyme family.

For the next activity, we explored rhyming words. The kids took turns using the magnetic fishing pole to pick up fish word cards with an image on them and place them into the correct rhyming word family. You can grab magnetic fishing poles on Amazon.

Our final literacy activity for the week was using dot markers to stamp the letters on our worksheets. The kids picked up letter cards and found the matching letters on their worksheets. We did both upper and lower-case letters with this activity.

At the top of the alphabet worksheet is a crab card with the letter H on it.  An orange dot marker is lying in the upper right corner of the image.

Math Ocean Activities

5 Days of Math Pinterest pin the image shows pattern blocks in the same pattern as the image on the activity card.  The number 6 is at the top.
A child is using pattern blocks to make the image of a crab.

Our first math activity was ocean-themed pattern blocks. I used these pattern blocks which I got off Amazon. The kids loved making crabs, stingrays, fish, etc out of the blocks. We took it a step further and counted the number of each type of block as well.

We worked on number formation with number strips. To keep them write-on, and wipe-off I laminated them. I differentiated them with numbers in sequence and repeated numbers for practice. I had my kids say the numbers as they wrote them.

Image shows a number strip with the numbers 5, 6, 7, 8, and 9 on it.  An erasable marker is laid above the number strip.
There is a colorful sheet at the bottom and colored pencils are on the right.  In the middle is a worksheet that says ocean graphing.  There are boxes for students to color in for the images within the large picture

Our next activity was ocean graphing. There are two pictures for the kids to look at and count the number of items within. They then graphed each image.

We got in some fine motor work with counting by doing these ocean-themed counting cards. The kids counted the number of fish in the tank and clipped the matching number on the card.

The image shows counting cards in a pink bin.  In the foreground is a clip card and the number 5 is being clipped.
The image shows a pattern block card with the number 6 on it and 6 colorful blocks are lined up.  Next to the image are 6 cubes in the same pattern as the image card.

Our final math activity was cube numbers and patterns. We took our math cubes and placed them in the same pattern as the picture. Then we counted the cubes.

Sensory, Science, and Social Ocean Themed Activities

The Pinterest Pin is for science, sensory, social and art activities for a preschool unit.  The image shows water beads in a sensory bin with sea life figures throughout.

The first activity for the week was a sensory bin. I leave this bin out for the entire week. I filled a tub with water beads and used these plastic sea animals as figures. The kids had a great time exploring the sensory bin.

The image shows a sensory bin with colorful water beads and plastic ocean animals
The image shows an ocean scene laid out on contact paper with black construction paper silhouettes.  A child's hands are placing tissue paper on the contact paper.

Next, we made these beautiful ocean scene suncatchers to hang on our windows to display. We used black construction paper to create the ocean scenery pieces and to give a bubble effect we used circle tissue paper. This pack of circle tissue paper on Amazon has different-sized circles. They are so pretty in the windows!

Our next activity was an ocean animal rescue. This one needs a bit of prep but my kids had a ton of fun rescuing the ocean animals from the ice block. They begged to do the activity multiple times. We used droppers, a chisel, and a hammer to rescue the creatures. I used the same plastic creatures from the sensory bin for this activity.

Image shows plastic ocean creatures frozen into ice.  A bowl with water and droppers is above the frozen ice blocks and below sits a wooden hammer and chisel.
Papers say living and nonliving and there are picture cards on each mat.

The kids put on their scientist hats for this living and nonliving sort. They had to decide which cards showed items that were living or nonliving. Then they placed the card on the correct mat.

Our final ocean themed activity for preschool was a rainbow fish name craft. We read aloud The Rainbow Fish by Marcus Pfister and created our rainbow fish using metallic and paper confetti. Then the kids wrote their names in bubbles and glued them to the top. This was the perfect culmination and the name fish looked really cute hanging up.

The image shows a paper fish glued on blue construction paper.  The scales of the fish are made from paper and metallic confetti.  Above the fish are white circles and within the circles are the letters to spell Brian

We had a busy week filled with so many ocean themed activities for preschool. This was a fun unit and perfect for spring/summer. Don’t forget to grab the ocean unit here if you loved all these activities!

Looking for more like this? Check out these posts:

Rainbow Unit for Preschool

Preschool Farm Activities


My name is Jen and I’m the face behind Endeavors in Education.

I have a passion for ELA and science. I am even STEM certified. Now I spend my time hanging with my kids, blogging (endeavorsined.com), and creating for my TpT store Endeavors in Education.

I’m so happy you’ve joined me on this journey!

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