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Take a deep dive into the ocean and find yourself surrounded by bright pink, purple, orange, yellow, and red coral. Learn all about the fascinating animals who call the reef home with our Coral Reef Lapbook.
Coral Reef Lapbook Lessons
Here are some sample lessons from the Coral Reef Lapbook:
What Is a Coral Reef?
Coral reefs are large underwater structures made up of millions of tiny animals called coral polyps. Coral polyps look like plants but are in fact simple animals. They have a soft tube like body with a mouth surrounded by long tentacles. The tentacles grab its food.
Coral reefs grow in warm tropical seas where the temperature of the water stays above 65 degrees F. Most reefs lie near the equator in shallow waters (usually 100 feet deep or less). Coral reefs are sometimes called the “rainforest of the sea” because of the enormous diversity of plants and animals.
Find the locations of coral reefs around the world by doing a quick internet search.
Hard Coral vs. Soft Corals
Hard corals are so named because they have a stony bases and/or hard outer skeletons. Hard corals live on the seafloor and on slopes. They feed only at night and are bright and colorful during feeding. Hard corals are reef building corals. See information below in How a Reef is Formed.
Soft corals do not have stony bases or outer skeletons; they are soft. They grow on overhangs and cliffs and feed during the day. They are very bright and colorful.
How a Reef Is Formed
When the hard coral polyps die, their skeletons are left behind. New polyps attach to the skeletons and when these new polyps die, their skeletons add another layer. So a reef is built over a long period of time and consists of layers and layers of coral polyp skeletons.
To access all of the lessons in this Coral Reef Lapbook, subscribe to Homeschool Share’s email list using the form in this post.
Coral Reef Lapbook Printables
In addition to the research lessons, the file includes these mini-books for your student to create a Coral Reef Lapbook:
- Coral Reef Creatures and Pocket
Cards include Butterfly Fish, Green Sea Turtle, Cowfish, Damselfish, Manta Ray, Eagle Ray, Lionfish, Triggerfish, Hawkfish, Goby, Sea Fan, Brain Coral, and more!
- Keeping It Clean Matchbook
- Giant Clam Shape Book
- Hard Coral Skeletons and My Skeleton Shutter Book
- What Is a Coral Reef Matchbook
- Coral Reef Blank Book (use as desired)
- Soft Coral vs. Hard Coral Venn Diagram Flap Book
- Coral Reef Fun Fact File Folder Mini-books
- The Parrotfish Story Mini-book
- Types of Coral Reefs Mini-book
- Coral Reef Map Shutter Book
- Why Are Reefs Important? Envelope Fold Book
- Something’s Fishy (Fish Characteristics) Twice Folded Book
- Fast Facts About the Great Barrier Reef Shape Book
- Coral Reef Food Chain
- Fish Defenses Flap Book
- And more!
Coral Reef Books
The file provides enough information to complete the mini-books, but it’s a good idea to read some books about coral reefs together, too. Here are our suggestions.
- Eyewitness Books: Fish by Steven Parker
- One Small Square Coral Reef by Donald M. Silver
- Explore My World: Coral Reefs by Jill Esbaum
- Coral Reefs by Gail Gibbons
How to Get Started with Your Coral Reef Lapbook
Follow these simple instructions to get started with the Coral Reef Lapbook.
- If you want, go to your local library and check out books about coral reefs and coral reef animals.
- Print the Coral Reef Lapbook.
- Choose and prepare the mini-books you want to use with your student.
- Enjoy a week of reading and learning all about coral reefs.