Who is ready for shark week? While we think the Narwhal takes the cake for most fascinating sea creatures…the shark is close behind. Let’s explore cool shark facts for kids and combine them with STEAM-inspired Narwhal activities. The shark is a fantastic ocean animal to learn about during any ocean theme lesson plan!
Shark Week July 11-18, 2023
Let’s take the time to learn more about these unique ocean creatures. Kids and adults, too, have always been fascinated by sharks. I am sure some of it concerns the movie Jaws and what we read about attacks. However, there is so much more to sharks than attacks!
There are many species of sharks, and you might even be surprised that the biggest shark is often called a gentle giant. Make shark week an educational week full of learning about these marine animals. Check out AZ Animals to learn more about the history behind shark week.
You Might Also Like: Narwhal Fun Facts for Kids
Common Shark Facts Questions
Everyone has questions about sharks; you can add this information to your vault of fun facts about sharks. Plus, you can try out some simple hands-on learning activities to back up these shark facts.
What is the world’s largest shark?
The world’s largest shark is the Whale Shark. The largest reported one measured 62 feet long, longer than a school bus!
Do sharks ever stop swimming?
Yes and no! Some sharks must constantly move in the water to keep oxygenated water passing over their gills, and if they were to stop swimming, they would not take in oxygen. However, some sharks, such as Nurse Sharks and Tiger Sharks, can rest on the seafloor. Do sharks have lungs?
Do sharks have lungs?
This shark fact question relates to the swimming question! Do sharks have lungs? No, they do not. Similar to how fish breathe, sharks use gils to pull oxygen out of the water and force it through their bloodstream.
Do sharks have a swim bladder?
While sharks do not have a swim bladder, they also do not float on their own! How do sharks float without a swim bladder? Their liver!
How does a shark float?
A shark’s liver is what helps a shark float. The liver contains a large amount of oil. Oil is lighter than water, keeping them from sinking in water. Try this simple experiment to demonstrate “How do shark float?”
Shark facts, shark games, and more shark fun in a free shark activity printable pack.
Fun Facts About Sharks
Our fun shark facts for kids resource include science activities, cool YouTube videos to check out different species, shark math activities, and a free printable pack to research and learn about your favorite shark! You can even build LEGO sharks! How cool is that! Let’s get started with 10 Fun Facts About Sharks.
1. Sharks have existed for 4 million years, long before dinosaurs. A shark dinosaur was called a Megalodon.
2. There are over 400 kinds of sharks!
3. The shortest shark is about 7 inches, and the longest is about 45 feet! The shortest shark is a Spined Pygmy. The Whale Shark is the longest. A Great White Shark is in-between. Most are the size of a human adult, 5-7 feet!
4. Sharks have rows and rows of teeth. When one falls out, a new one comes forward. They can have more than 20,000 teeth in their lifetime!
5. The most harmless shark is the most giant, whale shark.
6. Some sharks have babies called pups. Some sharks have eggs that are either laid or are hatched inside their mom before they are born.
7. Sharks have super nose and can smell their prey from far away. Two-thirds of a shark’s brain is dedicated to its sense of smell.
8. Sharks have no bones. They are made of cartilage.
9. Sharks have eyes on the sides of their heads, allowing them to see in front and in back of them quickly.
10. Sharks are at the top of the ocean food chain.
Shark Week Activities
Find various shark activities for kids to add to your “fun shark facts for kids “packed week! Explore science, art, math, engineering, literacy, and sensory play!
SHARK VIDEOS FOR KIDS
We have enjoyed many of Jonathon Bird’s Blue World Shark Academy Videos. Learn about sharks’ sensory systems, including their great nose, plus much more. Bird also has a great collection of videos on individual sharks that we have been watching together.
Learn a little bit more about each shark, and make sure to find your favorite shark! (We have viewed many of these videos but not all, so use your best judgment.)
Shark Water Sensory Bin
Create a hands-on shark-themed sensory bin for your youngest shark fans, and you can share simple shark facts with them as they play. First, grab a bin and add play sand, glass gems (vase filler), and aquarium plastic plants (seaweed). Next, add water! Then, add plastic sharks. You can usually find these in the dollar store unless you have LEGO sharks.
You might also like: Ocean Animals Sensory Bin
Shark Theme Pudding Slime
Hands-on fun with this easy edible slime recipe with a shark theme. A simple introduction to the world of sharks through sensory play!
Shark Theme STEAM Activities
What is STEAM? Science, technology, engineering, art, and math all come together to combine forces and make STEAM! It’s a multi-tasking activity that encourages kids to take a hands-on, critical thinking and problem-solving approach with creativity and fun!
Try a torn paper collage for this shark paper craft and create a watercolor background for this quick and fun shark art project that various ages can enjoy.
Do Sharks Have Lungs?
Try this hands-on activity to explore this shark fun fact and learn how gills work! How do sharks breathe underwater if they don’t have lungs?
Here you can answer the question, how does a shark float? Try our fun buoyancy experiment, watch a video, and learn more about how the sharks’ anatomy helps to keep them afloat!
OCEAN ZONES IN A JAR
Where do sharks live in the ocean levels? Make ocean zones in a jar for a fun shark week activity for kids. Make sure to research which sharks live where in the ocean zones.
BUILD A CAGE TO PROTECT A DIVER
When divers and scientists need to get a closer look, they will often stay inside a shark-proof cage to stay safe! Can you build a cage for a diver? Make sure it holds up underwater! You can check out this YouTube video here to see what a shark cage looks like, how it is used, and why it is used.
Get out your LEGO bricks and start building. Which LEGO shark will you make first? Also, check out some cool LEGO shark sets and our favorite LEGO shark minifig!
MEASURE THE LENGTH OF A SHARK
Get ready to take this math outside or try it in a room with plenty of space. What is the longest shark? The shortest shark? How about your favorite shark? Take a measuring tape and chalk outdoors and see how big or small sharks are!
SHARK COLOR BY NUMBER PACK (FREE)
These quick and easy shark color by number sheets are a fun way to add early math practice with a fun theme.
SHARK RESEARCH WORKSHEETS (FREE)
Do you know there are tons of different types of sharks? We are most familiar with the Great White Shark, the Hammerhead Shark, the Mako Shark, and the Whale Shark. Do you have a favorite? Grab this free shark research pack here.
Learn More About Ocean Animals
Do you have kids who love to learn about the ocean and all the ocean animals in it? Check out these ocean animal activities for more fantastic learning ideas for jellyfish, starfish, narwhals, and more!
Printable Ocean Activities Pack
If you want to have all of your printable ocean activities in one convenient place, plus exclusive worksheets with an ocean theme, our 100+ page Ocean STEM Project Pack is what you need!