Sunday, 23 February 2014

"One of the hermit crabs changed shells!"

With the event of the ice storm causing power outages across the GTA, our beloved hermit crabs: Crusty, Shelley, and Crabby passed away.  We discussed with the students the impact that the lack of heat had on the hermit crabs, and through their previous observations and research, understood that if the temperature in the terrarium went below 80 degrees, they could not survive.  This event allowed the students to gain further knowledge in the importance of making sure that the terrarium reflects the hermit crabs' natural habitat for survival.

Our terrarium remained empty for a while and we were quite sad.  But then, one day, we were given three new hermit crabs!  The students cheered with excitement and huddled around the terrarium to see their new friends!  

The students decided they needed names.  They rushed to make their own surveys, and asked their peers to pick which names they liked for the new hermit crabs.  Once the surveys were complete, we came together and jotted down all the name choices and voted again for our top three names.  The names chosen were: Ocean, Star, and Dottie!  Once again, the students wanted to place coloured dots on their shell in order to identify each of the hermit crabs. 

Surprisingly, the students then observed an unexpected special moment, "One of the hermit crabs changed shells!" A.M.  

"It got out of the striped shell and into the dotted one!" B.S.

Wow!  Why did that happen? Mrs. Ralph

"I think that shell was too small and he wanted a bigger one!" D.S.

"Maybe he didn't like it?" C.D.

The students continued to observe, think, and wonder about the hermit crabs.  To support their knowledge and questions, we had group discussions, looked in some of the non fiction books, and used various art mediums (e.g. drawing, writing, and creating using different materials) to further their learning.

 Hermit crab terrarium (side view) E.H. and N.S.

 Hermit crab terrarium (top view) E.H. and N.S.

Looking at our Hermit Crab Inquiry Binder 

One day at lunch, Ms. Powell and the students noticed something in the terrarium.  

We removed the object and placed it under a magnifying glass.  We were all puzzled!  

We placed the object and magnifying glass on the light table to get a better look.  The students had lots of questions and theories.  Paper and sketch pens were placed at the light table to support their observations, thoughts, or wonders.

What observations, explorations, and investigations will follow?  Stay tuned!

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