Teaching Ideas for Walk of the Whales by Nick Bland

The picture book Walk of the Whales is another exceptional delivery from Nick Bland.

The Blurb: When all of the whales in the ocean leave their home to walk around on land, people don’t quite know what to think. But soon shopkeepers go out of business, farms are flooded with water and salt, and people shout horrible, anti-whale words. That is, until, a smart little girl decides to ask the whales what everyone can do to help.

This book is a must for any classroom library as it seeks to explain how humanity and our lifestyle have impacted the natural environment in a way that young audiences can make connections.

Teaching ideas:

  • Explore the effects of whales in the ocean versus on land as a teaching concept: This involves examining the impact that whales have on their environment, both as marine animals and as ancestors of land mammals. It could include exploring the ecosystem roles that whales play in the ocean, their importance for regulating the food chain, and the ecological benefits of whale carcasses for other marine life. Comparing this to the impact of land-dwelling ancestors of whales could involve examining the effects of early mammal evolution on the land, and the role that early whales played in shaping the marine environment.
  • Evaluate the pros and cons of reintroducing whales to the ocean and construct a persuasive text using the OREO format: This involves researching and analyzing arguments for and against reintroducing whales to the ocean, and using the OREO format (Opinion, Reason, Example, Opinion) to construct a persuasive text arguing for or against the idea. Some arguments for reintroduction might include the restoration of ecosystems and biodiversity, the potential for scientific research, and the ethical responsibility to care for endangered species. Arguments against might include concerns about the impact on existing marine life, the cost and feasibility of reintroduction efforts, and the potential risks to human populations.
  • Design opinion posters on whether whales should remain on land or return to the ocean: This involves creating visual materials to communicate opinions about the issue of whale reintroduction. Students could create posters expressing their own viewpoints, or they could research and present arguments from different perspectives. This activity can be a fun and engaging way to encourage critical thinking and debate.
  • Devise and compose a newspaper article chronicling the day whales emerged from the ocean: This involves writing a fictional news story – the day when whales first walked out of the ocean and onto the land. This activity can be a creative way to explore the concept of evolution and the ways in which ancient animals might have interacted with their environment. Students could research the physical characteristics and behavior of early whales to create a plausible story, or they could take a more imaginative approach and create a fantastical tale.

Try it Out

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