Sun 26: Kermadecs video

Follow us north, 1000 kilometres north to the Kermadecs Islands.

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Below are some talking points and activities to pass the time, all relating to today’s video.

Talking points

Discuss the ideas presented in the video with your family—at home or over video conferencing. Find ways to involve as many people as possible, especially those who you know are isolated by the lock-down.

  • The booby is a large oceangoing bird. It looks a bit like a gannet or an albatross. What similarities and differences did you notice between these three birds?
  • There were some unusual creatures shown in this episode—such as the sea hare which is like a slug with undulating “wings”, the lionfish with its impressive “mane” of fins and the coral-munching starfish. What did you think about these creatures? Were there any others you liked or found creepy or interesting?
  • The spotted black groper can grow as big as a person. Did you like the groper? How would you feel about seeing a groper if you were snorkelling or diving? Do you have any ideas about why this species has adapted to change colour when interested in mating?
  • The booby’s courtship rituals include pointing their beaks to the sky, beak clapping and synchronised preening. Why might the birds practice these behaviours? Did you think the boobies did a good job of sharing parenting duties?
  • The mother humpback whale and her calf were midway through a journey from Tonga to Antarctica. What were your favourite things about the footage of the whales? You might have noticed the songs, the close up of the mother’s eye, the baby frolicking, the mother giving the baby milk or the male coming to escort them on their journey, among other things.

Task—”Ocean in a box” Underwater diorama

This project is a diorama with a twist. Blue paper or cellophane in the lid gives the scene a mysterious glow.

    1. Take a shoebox or similar sized box. Cut a rectangular hole in the lid. (Get help with this—a Stanley knife will cut the hole easily but it’s a good job for an adult to do.) This hole lets the light into the box for viewing.
    2. Cut a peephole in one end of the shoebox. Make this hole circular; ideally it will be a bit bigger than a $2 coin. This hole is what you put your eye to view the scene when it is finished. (Get an adult to cut this.)
    3. Tape some blue or green cellophane over the rectangular hole in the lid. No cellophane? Try lightweight blue paper, paint some Glad-Wrap blue, use tissue paper, use a blue or green plastic bag, or just leave the hole open.
    4. Decorate the interior of the box to create an underwater scene.
    5. Here are some things you can do: Make rocks out of scrunched up paper; stick these in place and paint them.
    6. Make seaweed by drawing it, cutting around it and sticking it in place (make it stand up straight with an ice-block stick behind it.)
    7. Cover the base with glue and sprinkle sand onto it.
    8. Use old artwork to cover the interior sides of the box, or paint the inside.
    9. Place some fish in the scene. You can draw these and cut them out, or you may have some pictures of fish in magazines that you can cut out. Use a needle and thread to “hang” your fish from the inside of the lid.
    10. Make some clay creatures such as starfish for the seabed.
    11. Carefully place the lid on the scene. Point the box towards the light and look through the eye-hole. You should see a mysterious ocean scene!

Send us a picture of your underwater diorama!