Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Little Corona Beach

Location:  Poppy and Pacific Coast Highway
    Corona Del Mar, Ca 92625

Hours of Operation:  6am to 10 pm

Tide Hours and Weather Forecast:  Reference weather for you.com

Admission:  Free

Parking:  Free parking is available in the residential area

Activities:  Designated protected marine life area, hiking, swimming, and boating

For more information call (949) 644-3151

The Intertidal Zone

"The intertidal zone extends from the wave-splashed rocks down to the low tide zone. There are many different kinds of animals in each of the different zones. Some animals that can't stay out of the water for long are found in the low tide zone. Other animals like limpets and snails live by the splash zone because they can stay out of the water longer."

Low Tide Zone - crabs, sculpins, sea urchins, abalones, barnacles, and anemones

Mid Tide Zone - goose barnacles, mussels, chitons, sea sacks, and ochre stars

High Tide Zone - periwinkles, limpets, shore crabs, and turban snails

Splash Zone- periwinkles and limpets


*pictures courtesy of yelp.com

Pictures and Insights

Corona Del Mar is a lovely beach surrounded by a wonderful atmosphere.  The air is warm combined with a nice breeze making the weather inviting.  The scenery is beautiful abundant in rocks, greenery, and sea life.  The beach is not overcrowded and almost seems secluded making it easy to escape to relaxation.

The End of the Fieldtrip

When the fieldtrip has come to an end and we enter back into the classroom the class will engage in a mini discussion.  Students will talk about their thoughts, reactions, and feelings about their trip to the Corona Del Mar Tidepools.  We will also discuss the mini handout and their noted observations. Students will then choose from one of the following as an assessment of their observations:  
  1. Create a poem of any style that incorporates important facts and/or the names of the animals of the tidepools.
  2. Write a short story that tells about life in the tidepools.
  3. Draw a picture of the tidepool and the animals that live there.

Resource Materials

There are many resource materials available for teachers to utilize concerning the subject and purpose of tidepools.  The resources listed below will provide examples of activities and give information to incorporate before, during, and after the fieldtrip exploration.

Cody's Science Education Zone

Monterey Bay Rocky Shore Activities

Life On the Rocky Shore

Preparation for the Exploration

There are several items that should be addressed to prepare the students before they explore the tidepools:

  1. Safety issues and rules.  There are safety rules for the students and for the tidepool animals.  Students must make sure that they have a teacher, parent volunteer, or buddy with them as they explore the area.  Students should watch out for slippery rocks that are in and out of the water and for crumbling cliffs.  Students may not step on any of the animals as they explore the tidepool, especially sea urchins and jellyfish.  Students need to keep a close eye on the tides.  Students should handle tidal pool creatures gently and always put them back where they were found.  No animal should be collected and taken home because they are for observation only.  Lastly, students will not litter  and be responsible to clean up their trash.  
  2. Food and Sunscreen.  Students will be in the sun for several hours.  They should bring the proper gear such as hats, sunglasses, and sunscreen to protect their body from the sun.  Also, a secure pair of sandals or shoes (water shoes) would be the most appropriate type of foot gear for this fieldtrip.  Students will be climbing on and around rocks which may be slippery when wet.  Students will provide their personal lunch along with plenty of fluids to keep them hydrated and full of energy.
  3. Life in the Tidepools.  Students will need to know the sea life that resides in the tidepool area.  Students will be provided with a mini handout which will consist of two pages for the students to complete.  The first sheet will list the name and picture of the animals that may be seen in the tidepool area.  The second sheet will provide students with space to write down the name of the animal they spotted along with its physical characteristics.  They will also be responsible for plants and rocks that they observed in the area.  This will give students the opportunity to be little scientists and actively engage them in the exploration.

Special Benefits From Visiting the Tidepools

Visiting the Corona Del Mar tidepools offers many special benefits that will allow students to gain valuable knowledge, explore a part of the ocean world, and understand the sea life that inhabit this area. Students will have the opportunity to walk along the beach, climb large rocks, and visit a designated marine life area to indulge their senses.  They will listen to the sounds of the ocean as the waves spill along the shore and splash against the rocks;  smell the saltiness of the water in the air; and feel the tiny grains of sand between their fingers, the smooth ocean breeze around their body, and the cool water on their feet.  They will see the beautiful scenery of the ocean, birds, and small creatures that walk the shore and live in the water.  This fieldtrip site will adhere to the multiple learning styles of each student as they engage in a constructivist approach learning about the aquatic life.

Welcome to the Tidepools

"Tide pools are a unique and brutal habitat where the ocean meets the land. This tidal zone is continually shaped by the actions of sun, wind, water, and rock. The sun bears down, heating exposed surfaces and organisms. Winds blow and contribute to the wave action, erosion, and drying of exposed plants and animals. Water in the form of waves endlessly pound at the rocks, constantly reshaping the coastline. Rocks are pounded by the waves and loose stones and sand grind into the shoreline."


"Life is tough for plants and animals that live in tide pools. Here portions of the shoreline are regularly covered and uncovered by the advance and retreat of the tides. In order to survive, tide pool life forms must avoid being washed away by the tidal waves, keep from drying out in the sunlight of low tide, and avoid being eaten.  Tide pools are subdivided in four zones. They are the splash zone and high tide, mid-tide, low tide areas."