Begin by asking children if they have ever gone fishing? Where did they go and what did they do? What do people use to catch fish? Where do fish live? Have they ever eaten fish? Create a mock fishing lake for children to go fishing in the classroom. Create paper or cardboard fish. Cut fish shapes out, allow children to color them, attach Velcro. Create fishing poles with sticks or dowels, attach line and attach Velcro to line to catch the fish with. Provide other fishing gear for children to become familiar with such as real fishing poles, lures (without hooks), fishing vests, tackles boxes, life jackets and fish measuring rulers. Allow each child time to go “fishing”.
Explore the wonderful world of fish as a class. Set up an aquarium or fish bowl so children can watch how fish move, eat and breathe. Look at pictures of different fish, read books about fish and if possible visit a local fish hatchery, pet store or aquarium.
Take children on a fishing trip to a local lake or pond. If possible have a fish fry with fish they caught (have back-up store bought or previously caught fish). Allow children to taste the fish they caught.
Have children go “fishing” for their snack! You will need goldfish crackers, pretzel sticks and dip or spread. Dip pretzel sticks (fishing pole) into dip or spread (bait) and use it to “catch” the goldfish crackers. See how many fish you can catch at a time!
For this and other great ideas use Growing Up WILD’s “Fishing Fun!”
- Iowa DNR Fishing page http://www.iowadnr.gov/Fishing
- Iowa Fish http://www.iowadnr.gov/Fishing/Iowa-Fish-Species
- Fishing tips and how-tos http://www.iowadnr.gov/Fishing/Fishing-Tips-How-Tos
- Iowa’s First Fish program http://www.iowadnr.gov/Fishing/Master-Angler-First-Fish