Teaching about the beach can be a lot of fun.
After all, most people enjoy going to the beach, so your students will probably be happy to learn how to communicate about it. Use the activities below to teach your students about the beach.
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Off to the Beach!
This introductory activity will depend a lot on the background of your students. You will need to introduce basic vocabulary for the beach. If they are familiar with the beach, you can show a picture of the beach in general, and then show individual pictures of each word with the spelling, spending some time on pronunciation. If they are not familiar with the beach, you may want to show a video to give them a better idea of what the beach looks like in general.
Sandy Hide and Seek
This is a review of the basic vocabulary, with a twist. You will need to get a few big basins and fill them with sand. You will also need to get up to five small items you can use at the beach (shovel, small ball, etc.) and bury them in the sand. Divide the students into as many groups as you have basins. Tell them there are x amount of items hidden in the basin, and that they will need to find them. Choose one person to be the recorder, and have them write down the items. If you have different items in each basin, you can then have them rotate and try again. This is a fun activity for all ages.
What to Wear?
Start this activity by reviewing all types of beachwear. Be sure to include t-shirts, shorts, flip flops and all types of swimwear. You will need to have some beachwear and some cold weather clothing, such as sweaters and jeans. Take a box and mix up the beachwear with the cold weather clothing. Hand out the boxes to groups of students. Tell them they have to separate them into two piles, beachwear and non-beachwear, and make a list of the beachwear using their vocabulary. After they do this once, they can trade boxes with another group and do it again, but this time you can time them to make it more competitive. The group that has them separated and listed correctly first, wins.
She Sells Seashells
This is a great activity to do as a review or introduction to adjectives. You will need a collection of seashells, enough to give a small assortment to each pair of students. Review or introduce adjectives to describe the shells as necessary. Then tell the students they will have a certain amount of time to write at least one adjective for each shell they have. When they are done, have them share. You can also have them talk about which one is their favorite, which one is their least favorite, and so on.
Safety is important at any age at the beach. Present some of the more common safety rules, such as listening to the lifeguards and staying within the buoys or ropes that define where swimming is allowed. After presenting and discussing these rules, have students choose their favorite rule and make a poster illustrating it. Have each student share their poster.
Who in the Sea Am I?
This activity will work best for students who have some writing ability, as they will compose some simple sentences. You will need a set of flashcards with all the sea creatures you are going to talk about. Start by reviewing or introducing a variety of sea creatures, especially any that the students are likely to see at a local beach. Afterwards, hand out a flashcard to each student. Explain to them that they need to compose a riddle for the class to guess their creature. It will consist of three simple “I statements,” and one question of “Who am I?” at the end. For example: “I am long. I slither. I look like a snake. Who am I?” In that case, the answer would be an eel. Students enjoy composing and guessing these riddles.
Charades at the Beach
The game of charades is always a fun one when reviewing vocabulary. You will need cards with the vocabulary and/or phrases you want to use in this game. You may need to model the game of charades for your students. After doing so, divide them into two teams. Have students take turns choosing a card and acting it out for their team. If the team gets the word in the allotted time, they get a point. The one with the most points at the end is the winner. To make it less competitive, do not divide the class into teams. Have one person pick a card and have the whole class guess together.
At the Boardwalk
This activity would be a great culminating one for a beach unit, or for a celebration. Some beaches have a boardwalk where games of chance are played and food, beverages and souvenirs are sold, and where there are carnival type rides. Your students may not be familiar with this, so you may want to show them a video about it just to introduce the idea the lesson before this one. For this activity, you will need to set up some simple typical boardwalk games, such as “knock over the cans” or “ring toss,” for example. You will need several volunteers to help you run these games. It would be fun to have the classroom set up to look like a boardwalk, and even to have some typical food there, such as pizza or ice cream. You will also want some appropriate beach type music playing. Your students will interact as if it were a real boardwalk, needing to ask how to play or ask to obtain their food. This can be a lot of fun for all!
Going to the beach is a fun activity for many. It may also be a totally new experience for others.
Either way, these activities will help you teach your students all about the beach.
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