How to Make an Ocean Zones Poster

poster pin

We made our ocean zones poster while studying our Ocean Unit Study for Preschoolers. It was a great way for the kids to visually grasp the concept of ocean zones and how different animals live in different zones. The kids were impressed at how many animals live in the top zone (90% of the ocean’s animals). Using different paint colors helped the kids understand how much (or how little) light reaches each zone as you go deeper.


The first thing we did was gather the supplies we needed. We wanted a roll of paper big enough to paint the five ocean zones: the sunlight zone, the twilight zone, the midnight zone, the abyssal zone, and the trench. We planned each zone to be about 8 inches long, so we used our paper roll dispenser and measured and cut about 40 inches of paper. There wasn’t a reason for this specific size other than the amount of wall space we had, so size can be adjusted depending on wall size as long as there is room on the paper for all five zones.

Once we had our paper, we chose what colors of paint we wanted for our poster. We chose a regular blue for the zone closest to the sun (the sunlight zone), a darker blue for the twilight zone, a deep dark midnight blue for the midnight zone, and black for the abyssal and trench zones. We also chose a sand-colored paint for the trenches at the bottom of the ocean, and a bit of yellow paint to make a sun at the very top of our paper to visually see that the dark parts of the ocean are furthest from the sun. (Plus, what kids’ painting project is complete without a cheerful sun in the top corner?)

1 gather supplies.jpg


I used a pencil and ruler to divide the paper into five even sections. I also outlined and painted the trench and the sun myself. Then the kids each picked what color/section they wanted to paint.

2- paint

3 paint

After the painting was finished, we let it sit several hours to make sure it was nice and dry. Once it was dry I used some markers to label the zones.

4 poster.jpg

Gluing the ocean animals

While the paint was drying I looked up various animals from different ocean zones on the computer, printed, and cut them out. When the poster was completely dry, the kids used glue to glue the ocean animals on. I had the animals sorted into different piles for each zone and the kids worked in different zones, working towards the middle one zone at a time. 5 sea creatures


After the glue dried, we modeled and hung our finished ocean zones poster!

7 modeling the poster

The finished project!




If you like our ocean poster, share and pin!

Check out our Ocean Unit Study for preschoolers!


2 thoughts on “How to Make an Ocean Zones Poster

  1. Pingback: Coral Reef Art Project (using scraps!) | these good old days

  2. Pingback: Ocean Unit Study for Preschoolers | these good old days

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