Shark Week: Fun Learning Opportunity for Kids
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In honor of Shark Week, we decided to give you some fun scientific facts your kids can sink their teeth into (pun intended). Sharks often get a bad rap, but the fact is, they are important to our ecosystem. While movies like JAWS strike fear into most people, sharks aren’t the killing machines like the movies portray and actually have some similarities to humans.
If you and your kids are really into watching Shark Week, bring out your inner marine biologist and share these fun facts with your kids!
Getting “Deep” with your Child
A shark’s brain is similar to a human brain?
While human traits and brain functionality are more closely related to dolphins, there are some similarities between the human brain and a shark’s brain. As scientists make new discoveries about the sharks, it appears our brain similarities may be the key to prevent more shark attacks and could serve as a repellant to these majestic animals. So what do our brains have in common? Humans and sharks are similar when it comes to visual input and sensory systems. By studying sharks visual and sensory systems, scientists could find new technologies to prevent dangerous situations and keep sharks from humans on beaches and in the ocean.
Are you in touch with your inner shark?
Researchers found the human immune system is similar to that of a shark’s. Sharks have all four types of white blood cells found in mammals and we have 154 genes comparable to that of a shark. With advanced technologies, sharks potent immune systems can fight off many kinds of infections and cancerous tumors. Turns out, we can learn a lot from the evolution of our immune systems by getting closer to our jawless friends.
How do sharks help our planet?
There are more than 465 known species of sharks living in our oceans. Sharks help regulate our ecosystem because they are on top of the food chain in every part of the ocean and keep populations of other fish healthy by eating the sick and weak fish to prevents disease and outbreaks. If sharks were ever eliminated, the marine ecosystem would lose its balance and ultimately affect us humans on dry land. How so, you ask? Well, if you are a fish lover, removing sharks could mean the loss of important foods we depend on for survival. Commercially important fish, like tuna and other species of shellfish, would not be available if it weren’t for sharks. So lift that spicy tuna roll and propose a toast to our salt water life savers.
Sharks back in time
Sharks have been around for more than 400 million years, long before vertebrates populated the land. Today there are 370 species, many harmless to humans. While you might be scared of these large creatures, only 30 species of sharks are known to attack humans. To rest your fears even more, humans have a 1 in 300 million chance at being killed by a shark. So while at the beach, stay cautious and don’t get too cozy with these wild creatures, but let’s give our shark pals a break.
Want to learn more about our jagged toothed friends? This summer is great for taking the kids to your local aquarium. Wherever you are, there are always great options for you and your kids.
Integrated Learning Strategies is a Utah-based center dedicated to helping mainstream children and children with learning challenges achieve academic success. Our services provide kids with non-traditional tutoring programs within the Davis County, Kaysville, Layton, Syracuse, Farmington, and Centerville areas. Areas to find Integrated Learning Strategies include: Reading tutors in Kaysville, Math tutors in Kaysville, Common Core Tutors in Kaysville, Tutors in Utah, Utah Tutoring Programs