How Can We Help?

K, 1, 2

This lesson will demonstrate to the children that animals need a safe environment just like humans do. They will discover that even small creatures can make a difference in an ocean environment, just like they can make a difference in helping to protect the ocean environment by not littering or polluting the water.

PrintThree Forty-Five Minute Class Periods

The learner will:

  • understand all living things have life requirements.
  • compare and contrast what they like and dislike about the oceans.
  • develop a class letter to an organization or ocean expert asking how they can help keep the oceans clean.
  • demonstrate an understanding of stewardship for the Earth through their letter.
  • Book: Do You Know Where Sea Turtles Go?
  • Chart Paper for recording likes and dislikes
  • Chart Paper for drafting a class letter
  • Lowery, Paul. Do You Know Where Sea Turtles Go? PBL Stories, LLC, 2005. ISBN: 0977105997

Organizations: Kid’s Corner

Greenbriar Tower II

870 Greenbriar Circle, Suite 402

Chesapeake, VA 23320



  1. Anticipatory Set:Begin this lesson by using a compare-and-contrast chart.Label it likes and dislikes.Talk about the ocean environment, and what they like and dislike about it.

  2. Read aloud the book, Do You Know Where Sea Turtles Go? and discuss the needs of these animals. When you finish the book, talk with the children about the different dangers the turtles experienced.

  3. Ask: What do you think other sea creatures do when they encounter these dangers? What happens if ocean animals don’t have a safe environment? What can we do to help the ocean animals live in a safe environment?

  4. Have the children discuss what can be done to help clean up the environment and how to make more people aware of the ocean environment.

  5. Tell the children there are many different organizations working to keep our oceans clean, and we can make a difference by helping our community understand the importance of keeping our oceans clean. (See Bibliographical References)

  6. Make a compare-and-contrast graphic (Venn Diagram) on a display area, and discuss some of the similarities and differences between people and ocean animals, and their need for a clean environment.

  7. Have the children present their dioramas and talk about the different ocean animals or environments they built in their dioramas.

  8. Ask them to add to their daily journals the information that they learned today.


Children will demonstrate what they have learned by writing a class letter to an organization or ocean expert to find out more about what we can do to help clean up our oceans. Tell them that they need to tell the experts that they have been learning about the ocean and the animals that live in it. They must tell the experts three things they have learned in the unit before they ask questions about taking care of the oceans. Teacher Note: Older students can copy the class letter and/or draw a picture to show what they have learned.

Cross Curriculum 

Make arrangements with another class for the children to share their Ocean Dioramas. Remind them that they should share the information that they have learned about taking care of the ocean environment.

Philanthropy Framework

  1. Strand PHIL.I Definitions of Philanthropy
    1. Standard DP 01. Define Philanthropy
      1. Benchmark E.3 Recognize that citizens have a responsibility for the common good as defined by democratic principles.
    2. Standard DP 02. Roles of Government, Business, and Philanthropy
      1. Benchmark E.6 Explain why acting philanthropically is good for the community, state, nation, or world.
  2. Strand PHIL.II Philanthropy and Civil Society
    1. Standard PCS 02. Diverse Cultures
      1. Benchmark E.2 Discuss the importance of respect for others.
  3. Strand PHIL.III Philanthropy and the Individual
    1. Standard PI 01. Reasons for Individual Philanthropy
      1. Benchmark E.1 Describe one reason why a person might give or volunteer.
      2. Benchmark E.5 Give examples of actions students can take to improve the common good and list or describe responsibilities that go with those actions.