sea turtle blowing water from nose

Turtle Ideas: Experiences, Adoptions & Crafts

“Turtles, Turtles, Rah, Rah Rah… Turtles, Turtles, Ha, Ha Ha…But Mmm, I love Turtles!” Yes, that catchphrase is for candy, but we can say the same about real turtles! Are you looking for some unique turtle ideas for your budding herpetologist?

One of our favorite characters from the movie Nemo was, you guessed it – the sea turtle Squirt! Sea turtles really do seem like cool, laid-back surfers, hanging around coral reefs and groovin’ to the ocean currents. They have such an important role in the ocean ecosystem but are endangered. How can kids help? Adopt a sea turtle!

Did you know you join your own turtle’s adventure as it travels across the ocean? See below!

Adopt your turtle and see where it travels!

  • You learn your turtle’s name and get a picture
  • You discover their individual story
  • Have access to your live turtle tracker (it’s as cool as it sounds)
  • And you get to choose a beautiful turtle bracelet too!
turtle adoption bracelet

Here is the official website for the Wildlife Collection bracelet, which works in partnership with the Sea Turtle Conservatory. Note: please be cautious about purchasing these bracelets from other sources. Apparently, this is the only genuine bracelet officially partnered with the conservatory.

FREE FUN: You can also see a list of current active sea turtles being tracked across the ocean on the Sea Turtle Conservatory Website

Get Involved with Live Turtle Experiences

Yes, you are seeing this correctly. This is a photo of a jaguar and green turtle, a combined experience available in Costa Rica.

Photo Credit:

Through the Sea Turtle Conservatory, you can join various turtle experiences like live release events and in-person interaction with responsible conservation programs.

TURTLE Migration Project

As you receive updates about your turtle, pin the location (or use dry-erase markers) on a fun map. You can learn about geography and migration and simultaneously follow your new friend’s travels.

There’s also this type of large peel-and-stick animal wall map. You could track them using small removable stickers like these inexpensive ones. Or use stickie-notes and write the date when they’re spotted.

Turtle Craft Ideas for Kids

turtle ideas for kids paper mache turtle

Make your own Paper Mache turtle!

See this post for free, detailed instructions on how to make a paper mache turtle.

We include a free paper mache paste recipe that’s easy to clean.

You can make it as crazy colorful as your heart desires!

Local TURTLE Spotting Adventure

turtle ideas for kids go turtle spotting giant freshwater snapping turtle
Big Snapper Ontario Lake

Not near the ocean? Turtles are everywhere! Take a family outing near your home to spot freshwater turtles in their habitat. Bring your camera!

Look along the banks of small ponds, lakes, and slow-moving streams. They like damp areas with rocks, stumps, and hiding spots. You will sometimes see them sunning themselves on rocks or logs.

A good place to spot them is from a canoe as you slowly meander up a lazy river (if you have never canoed before or are apprehensive about it, see our article about Canoeing with Kids).

Did you know that many turtles are threatened or endangered? Your local area will likely have a website similar to this one here in Ontario about spotting your local turtles and which ones are at risk.

Guidebooks are helpful in your spotting adventures. We still have ours (pictured), and it’s got lots of wrinkles from all the use!

If you would like your kids to enjoy the same fun, here is an example of Peterson Field Guide to Eastern & Central North America or Western North America Reptiles and Amphibians

Turtles as Pets

Turtle Puzzles

Best for ages 3 months and up: Wooden turtle puzzle

Ages 6+: Eco-Friendly 3D turtle puzzle

For ages 8+: Paintable wooden 3-D dolphin (and sea creature set)

Good for ages 6+: 1000 pieces, educational with 25 different turtle and tortoise species, made in the USA

Turtle Books

Ages 10+: National Geographic Kids Mission: Sea Turtle Rescue: All About Sea Turtles and How to Save Them. Proceeds help National Geographic conservation efforts.

Coloring Books

The World of Turtles: color turtles from around the world in their natural habitat. Fun and educational.

For younger kids, try this one

Please don’t take a wild one home as a pet! If your kid really wants a turtle, we have been there. We had a turtle named Max. See this article about Turtles as Pets for housing, food, handling, and local adoptions too!

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