What’s Deep in the Ocean?


The ocean’s surface really is just the tip of the iceberg! Oceanographers have found amazing creatures that adapt to drastic underwater conditions.


1. How much of the ocean is unexplored? 98%! Oceanographers study the ocean’s size, biology, resources, and so much more. Scientists have labeled different depth zones. Each zone has unique characteristics such as water temperature, amount of light, and creatures who live there. Discover all you can about the depths of the ocean. Then make this wallhanging to show what you’ve learned.

2. Divide wax paper (a bit longer than three sheets of construction paper) into zones with Crayola Markers. At the top is the sunlight zone, followed by the twilight, and then the midnight zones.

3. Leave a little blank space at the top. Write information about each zone, such as depth from the surface or water pressure (which is 100 times greater in the Twilight Zone than on the Earth’s surface).

4. On the back of each zone, attach paper with a Crayola Glue Stick (for example, place light blue paper behind the sunlight zone). Illustrate sea animals and plants found within each zone. Capture their colors and any bioluminescence.

5. Shape Crayola Model Magic into small sea creatures. You might make a jellyfish’s tentacles or a snipe eel’s tail. Sculpt an oceanographer’s boat from Model Magic. Air-dry the sculptures. Decorate them with washable markers if you wish. Use Crayola School Glue to attach the creatures to the correct zones. Air-dry the glue.

6. Color a cardboard roll. Wrap and glue the blank top of the wax paper around the tube. Glue the boat to the tube as if it were floating on the ocean surface. Air-dry the glue.

7. Punch a hole at either end of the tube and attach a chenille stem through each hole. Join them to form a hanger. Or thread a ribbon through the tube.

Safety Guidelines

Adult supervision is required for any arts & crafts project. Observe children closely and intervene as necessary to prevent potential safety problems and ensure appropriate use of arts and crafts materials. Some craft items, particularly beads and buttons, are potential choking hazards for young children. Avoid use of such small parts with children younger than 3 years. Craft items such as scissors, push pins and chenille sticks may have sharp points or edges. Avoid use of materials with sharp points by children younger than 4 years. Read all manufacturers' safety warnings before using arts and craft supplies.

Crayola Modeling Materials including Crayola Model Magic®, and Model Magic Fusion™, Crayola Air-Dry Clay, and Crayola Dough—

  • Keep away from open flames. Do not use to make candleholders, hot plates, trivets, or other similar objects that will be used or placed near fire and other heat sources.
  • Do not put in an oven, microwave, or kiln.
  • Do not make into vessels/containers that will hold unpackaged food.
  • The use of modeling material to make items that look like food is discouraged for children younger than age 5 to avoid their confusion with real food.
  • Unless sealed with a water-resistant glaze, do not make projects exposed to or immersed in water, such as boats or outdoor bird feeders. They would disintegrate when exposed to moisture.
  • Crayola Dough—contains gluten (wheat flour) as an ingredient.
  • Crayola Air-Dry Clay, Crayola Model Magic and Model Magic Fusion are gluten-free. However, they are produced on the same machinery as Crayola Dough which does contain gluten. Although the machines are cleaned prior to the start of each production run, there is a slight possibility that trace amounts of gluten from Crayola Dough may be present in the other modeling compound products. For information regarding specific ingredients or allergic concerns, please call our Consumer Affairs department at 1-800-272-9652 weekdays between 9 AM and 4 PM Eastern Standard Time.

Recycled Cardboard Tubes—Use paper towel tubes, gift-wrap tubes, or long cardboard tubes that can be cut to any length. Health professionals caution against using recycled toilet paper tubes for arts & crafts projects because of the potential fecal contamination.

Scissors—ATTENTION: The cutting edges of scissors are sharp and care should be taken whenever cutting or handling. Blunt-tip scissors should be used only by children 4 years and older. Pointed-tip scissors should be used only by children 6 years and older.

String-Like Materials—Includes string, raffia, lacing, yarn, ribbon, and other similar material. Children 3 years and younger should not be given any string-like material that is longer than 12 inches. Close adult supervision is essential whenever children use string-like material. When crafts are to be worn around the necks of children 8 years and younger, attach the ends of the “string-like material” with clear adhesive tape, which allows easy release of the bond if the craft becomes entangled or caught on equipment. For children older than 8 years, the ends of the “string-like material” may be tied and knotted.


  • Research the different ways oceanographers have studied the ocean. What were the earliest submersibles like? Now they can descend at a rate of 30.5 m (100 ft) per minute.
  • Make a list of the adaptations that appear in living things as one descends deeper into the ocean (jaws get larger, stomachs expand, and bioluminescent features dominate). Explain the reasons behind each adaptation.
  • Write a play or radio drama about life in the abyss, the zone past 3,900 m (13,000 ft). Include historical and literary references.
  • Assessment: Evaluate the accuracy of the information presented. How fully is the topic covered?

Related Lesson Plans

Lesson Plans

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crayola supplies
  • Model Magic®
  • Glue Sticks
  • No-Run School Glue
  • Pointed Tip Scissors
  • Construction Paper
household supplies
  • hole punch
  • wax paper
  • chenille sticks
  • recycled gift wrap or paper towel roll



  • Grades 1 to 3
  • Grades 4 to 6


  • Science
  • Visual Arts


  • 30 to 60 minutes
  • Multiple Sessions


  • Students learn about the different ocean zones and the various aspects that characterize each zone including flora and fauna as well as the chemical and physical sciences.

  • Students reproduce the features of each zone graphically.

  • Students unify their understanding in a hanging display.


Research Canada Standards
Research UK Standards
Research U.S. Standards