Right Under Your Nose: FOUNDATION - Science- Elaborate

When the power goes off, Big Cuz, Nanna, Little J and Old Dog go to the beach. They use bread to catch hermit crabs, which in turn are used to catch a ‘bluebone’ fish. Big Cuz learns how to fish, Nanna makes a fire to cook the fish, and Little J finds a large clam shell to take to school the next day.

Elaborate - Participate in guided investigations and make observations using the senses


Revisit the Little J & Big Cuz, Episode 4 ‘Right Under Your Nose’, and ask students to recall how Nanna enticed the Hermit crabs to the surface of the beach (using bread).

. Ask students to identify the information provided about the ‘needs’ of Hermit crabs. Have students list two facts they recall from the clips, such as:

Hermit crabs require:

  • a shell: They find and share shells with other hermit crabs as they grow. Without a shell, they will die in the heat of the sun.
  • large open areas and deep sand: They need to forage and dig.
  • a humid environment: Their special gills need to stay moist, and the crabs carry around a small amount of water in their shells.
  • salt water and sea water: The hermit crab can tolerate both.
  • food: The hermit crab is an omnivorous and eats plants and meats.

Hermit crabs:

  • regenerate: they can regrow lost/broken limbs.
  • like to live in pairs or more: they like company and are usually found in groups.
  • are nocturnal: they are active at night.
  • live in mangrove and beach areas: they are active in their preferred habitat
  • hibernate: in winter (between late April and late August) Hermit crabs move inland from the coast and hibernate underground.

Reference: Crazy Crabs (land hermit crabs)

Introduce students to the life cycle of a hermit crab and have students pose and respond to questions about how the hermit crab reproduces and what the animal needs to survive.

Suggested resources:

Using a lifecycle template, have students draw the life cycle of the hermit crab. Ask students to start a Science Journal and save their images and diagrams into it.

A Science Journal is a record of a student’s observations, experiences and reflections. Each entry is dated and annotated by the student. Annotations may include written labels, drawings, diagrams, charts, small specimens, photographs, and graphs. Student engagement and learning is evident in the science journal.

Have students design and construct their own shell house for a hermit crab. Using playdough, modelling clay, plasticine or a discarded cone shells, have students decorate their shell house for display.

Suggested teacher resources: