Starfish Lesson for Kids

Instructor: Heather Pier

Heather has taught high school and college science courses, and has a master's degree in geography-climatology.

In this lesson, you will learn about starfish, like where they live, how they look and what they eat. You will also learn some cool facts about them.

What is a Starfish?

Can you imagine what your life would be like if you had five arms and no legs? If you can, then you might have some idea of what life is like for a starfish. Starfish are a type of salt water animal that has five arms. Salt water is the kind of water found in the world's oceans.

There are many different colors of starfish.

Starfish are invertebrates, which means they are an animal that does not have a backbone. Humans, on the other hand, have backbones and are called vertebrates. Starfish can come in many different colors and patterns. They can also live in many different places.

Where do Starfish Live?

Many sea creatures, like coral, are very sensitive to temperature and can only live in warm water. Starfish are different. They can live almost anywhere in the world as long as they are in salt water.

This starfish is not blue because he is cold. Starfish can live in both cold and warm water.

They can live in cold water areas, like near the north and south poles. They can also live in warm areas, like coral reefs in tropical places. Starfish that live in warm places can't live in cold places, and starfish that live in cold places can't live in warm places. But there are some types of starfish that can be found almost everywhere in the world's oceans.

Some animals only like to live in places with lots of light, like near the ocean surface. But starfish can live at almost any depth of water, from shorelines to the deep ocean floor.

Starfish Features

Starfish are part of a group of animals called echinoderms. Echinoderm (pronounced e-kine-o-derm) is a word that means spiny skin. If you look closely, you can see that starfish have bumpy skin. Some species are spinier looking than others, but all will have bumpy skin instead of smooth skin.

Starfish have bumpy skin like all echinoderms do.

Starfish have more to their bodies than just their five arms and no backbone. They also have an area called the central disc, which is what their arms are attached to.

The top of their body is the part that you could see if you were looking down at one on the ocean floor. On the bottom of the central disc part of their body is their mouth. They don't use it to talk like we do, but they do use it to eat with.

The area in the red circle is the mouth of the starfish.

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