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Do you speak whale?

Author Information

  • Name: Dr. Regina A. Guazzo
  • Position and Institution: Oceanographer, U.S. Navy
  • Contact:
  • Available for contact for questions and classroom visits: Yes
  • Year contributed: 2020


  • Grade Level: K-5
  • Science Domain: Physical Sciences, Life Sciences
  • PE Code: 4-PS4-1, 3-LS2-1


Light does not travel well underwater and so whales rely on sound as their primary way to communicate with each other and sense their environment. Each whale species produces unique sounds. These sounds may help the whale find a mate, capture prey, or navigate through their ocean habitat.

In this lesson, students will get to hear the sounds of 9 different whale species. As they observe the differences between different species, they will formulate hypotheses about why the whales make different sounds. They will apply this new knowledge to guess the sound of a different species that they haven’t heard yet and also have the option of inventing a new species and its calls.


  • Whales
  • sound
  • animal behavior
  • oceanography
  • marine biology
  • marine mammals


sandiego/do_you_speak_whale.txt · Last modified: 2020/10/27 13:29 (external edit)