Ocean Sensory Tub



This was so much fun it deserves it own post. After watching the first part of David Attenborough’s THE BLUE PLANET I set up an ocean sensory tub for my littlest homeschooler. (click link for where to buy DVD)

Who are sensory tubs great for? Children with visual processing difficulties. Children with speech delay/difficulties. Anyone who wants to have bit of fun. Younger children. Older children (see my note at the end about what my grade 5 boy used the tub for.

Because of his tough start in life, Darius has some learning difficulties and delays including visual processing difficulties. Basically, Daz finds interpreting visual information challenging. Darius needs his whole body to be involved in his learning in order to retain learning and make links between prior knowledge and new information. He is what you might call a kinaesthetic learner. He learns best by involving his whole body with as many sense as possible to experience his world. (Click link for more information about kinaesthetic and tactile learners)

What you need: 

  • blue jelly (we used five boxes
  • large shallow plastic container
  • sand, shells, plastic ocean animals etc.
  • rocks big enough to divide the sand area from the blue jelly ocean

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What to do? This is open ended play. Darius enjoyed getting his hands stained blue from the jelly and moving the animals all about. To add to the experience I asked his to use the animals to show me some of what he had seen in the Blue Planet DVD. Darius also made up stories about the animals to tell me.

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The surprise for me: Cyrus, my grade 5 student, also loved this. He used the tub to create a little mini documentary of what he had seen on the DVD. I filmed the documentary on my iPhone, which was a giggle in itself. I could see the gaps in his knowledge about the animals, but we have only just started learning about the oceans, and this also gave me great insight into what he does and doesn’t understand yet. He also had a lot more questions about the oceans after creating his own little doc and is keen to go and research these for himself.

IMG_4558 (1).jpgAlso. This is just plain fun. And fun is an end in itself. No further educational aims required. Enjoy. If you try this I’d love to know what your kids got out of it. Other than blue hands. Warning; they will get blue hands. It washes off in the shower 🙂

Have fun! Love Gone Wild Homeschool. xx


Go Wild With Us- Rock Pooling

Gone Wild Homeschool has officially gone wild! This term the boys decided they want to learn about all things OCEAN. So today we got wet, windblown, sandy and completely off the beaten path.  And today they learnt that school has no walls and no ceiling. Our classroom was the rock pools of Currumbin (Gold Coast, Queensland). And when we were all said and done with sand in our hair and in our…well, you know where sand gets…my boys informed me that his blue planet we live on is, in their words, “Fully lit!” I’ve been told that means awesome.

IMG_2896.jpg Have you been ROCK POOLING? Go! I had no idea they would be so keen to explore. To learn. To ask questions and to wonder why.

“There are no seven wonders of the world in the eyes of a child. There are seven million. ~Walt Streightiff

Cy, armed with his magnifying glass, pen and chart of rock pool sea life could not contain himself. And the joy of this open air classroom is he does not HAVE to contain himself. He looked in every rock pool, between the crevasses and under seaweed.

“Mummy, come look at this! Mummy, did you see that? Whoah! What is that thing?”

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But not Dazzy.

Darius, our littlest marine explorer, started out shy and fearful. “Are the waves going to get me? Will there be sea snakes? Will they bite me? I don’t want to stand on the shells! They might bite me too!” So we went slowly. There were no lunch time bells or end of period time-is-up, clock is ticking, hurry ups down here today. The world was blue and warm and, we respected, that for him it was also full of unknown things that he thought were waiting to snack on him.

Big brother pointed out the small, the tiny, the little moving shells, the way the water trickled over the barnacles and back to the sea.


We held his hand, steadied his steps, steadied his heart.

And before long we heard our little Dazzy’s brave voice. “Mummy, I saw it! Look, it’s moving it’s legs! What is that? Can we see another one? What’s down there?”

Today dazzy learnt to place his feet where he felt safe, that going slow was okay and that his pace is just fine with us.

“The world is full of magic things patiently waiting for our senses to grow sharper.” ~ W.B. Yeats



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And Isaiah, our son of a thousand things he knows, even he found a few that he did not.”I did not know all this was here. How did I not know this was here? What the heck is that?”

And oh, the things we saw.

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We spent hours. And I thought about that. Spending. Today was some of the best spending we have done in a long time.

IMG_2958.jpg Not only shells and crabs and molluscs and other yet to be identified sea creatures, but we saw each other. The way we learn. The questions we ask. The fears we have. Even little fears. Even silly ones. Because it’s not silly to them this learning and thinking and musing and being afraid over things big and small. None of it is little. To them it is all big. An ocean of big.



And I have to say, I enjoyed every minute of this with them.







We hope you come and join us again for more homeschool adventures. It’s a big , small, wonderful world out there folks. Go find your wonder 🙂