Mrs. Hirner's Third Grade Class
Norwood Avenue Elementary School
Port Jefferson Station, New York

The students of Mrs. Hirner's class have been busy learning about whales and ocean life.

We began our study by exploring and writing about different sea creatures such as starfish, sea urchins, sea turtles, sponges, etc.  Afterwards we brainstormed to compare and contrast the differences between fish and mammals using Venn diagrams.  Out class learned so much we didn't know before when writing to compare and contrast. 

Next, onto our whales.  After browsing the Internet to discover different kinds of whales, we chose our favorite and wrote Haiku poetry about them which we illustrated with Kid Pix.

Next, onto the blubber glove experiment we found linked on this project's web site.  The kids loved seeing how much blubber acts as an insulator for our whale friends. Here is a Kidspiration template that you can use if you have the program.

Finally, partners wrote an informative essay using facts learned from the point of view of their favorite whale.  These are being displayed on a water colored mural background we painted.  All of us had a whale of a time.

Jeffrey the Humpback Whale

Hello, my name is Jeffrey the Humpback Whale.  Let me tell you about myself.

I inhabit cold northern waters in the summer.  Then I migrate to warmer waters in tropical and subtropical areas for mating.

I can grow up to 50-62 feet in length.  I may weigh as much as 45 tons!  I have a life span of 60-90 years.  Isn't that cool?

I eat krill, plankton, and schooling fish such as capelin herring and mackerel.

My dad Philip, the humpback is known for singing songs for my mom, Stephanie.  We Humpbacks swim very slowly.  We are endangered because men hunted us.

My baby sister Melanie is a calf.  When my sister was born she drank milk from slits near my mom's tail.  All of my family are mammals which means we drink milk from our moms (Like Melanie does) when we are young.  We have well developed brains and have a backbone.  That makes us vertebrates!

Finally, we are baleen whales that means that we have special plates growing from our upper jaw.  They work like strips hanging down in our mouth.  I filter food out of the water.  I mainly enjoy eating plankton, small schooling fish and krill.  I can eat several thousand pounds a day!  I hope you liked our story.  Bye-Bye

Jeffrey, Stephanie, Melanie and Philip
The Humpback Pod

Deanna and Cassidy

© Patricia Knox, Linda Brandon & Susan Silverman - Whale Tales 2004