Key Stage 2 - Classify That!
Explore the Sea Floor - Classify this PDFs.

Lesson aims

To introduce pupils to how and why environmental studies are undertaken.
To make pupils more aware of the marine environment and the sustainable use of resources.

Learning objectives

  • to give reasons why scientists study the marine environment.
  • to sort marine animals into groups.
  • to describe how people use marine resources and how people can help make this more sustainable.

Curriculum links

Science - Habitats, interdependence and adaptation, Scientific enquiry, Variation and classification, Living things in their environment
Geography - Geographical enquiry, Sustainable development
Citizenship - Preparing to play an active role as citizens, working together, communication skills

Brief outline

Using the introductory powerpoint (from the CD-ROM or on the web pages) to give an overview of how and why scientists have been studying the sea floor. Show the sampling video clip.

Split the pupils into 4 groups and give each group a set of the animal images and 4 coloured hoops (it can be done without the need for hoops). Ask the pupils to sort the pictures into the four hoops (or just into 4 piles if not using hoops) according to how they look (e.g. all those with legs in one hoop, all those with shells in one hoop). Ask each group to report back to the rest of the class on how they sorted the animals into the hoops. You should find that there are differences in ideas between groups. Discuss the need for a system for all scientists to follow to identify animals and introduce the identification key*. Ask pupils to try and identify the animals in the pictures using the key.

*For lower Key Stage 2 groups use the classify clue cards instead of the key (Fold each card in half and laminate so that on side has the clue, the other the name of the animal). One pupil can read the clue and the other group members find the animal that matches.

Themes covered

  • How and why do scientists study the sea floor?
  • Classifying animals into groups
  • Sustainability
  • Group work
  • Variation
  • Adaptation
  • Looking after the environment
  • Marine animals


Marine animals could be compared to land animals - what are the similarities and differences?