Use this resource to learn how to protect our unique marine environment.

This resource links to the New Zealand Curriculum at levels 1-4, but can be adapted for use at various levels. The unit is based on an integrated, inquiry learning process.

It contains teaching and learning material to support a unit of work that is grounded in Environmental Education for Sustainability (EEfS) / Conservation education themes, and incorporates aspects of Te Ao Māori (a Māori worldview). 

    Learning objectives

    Overall vision:

    To provide students, teachers and their communities with opportunities to grow their knowledge, skills and understandings about marine conservation, so that they can help resolve environmental challenges for the marine environment in their local area and beyond.

    The exact pathways of learning and associated outcomes are up to students and teachers. Activities and suggestions in the resource enable the following learning opportunities:

    Connecting to the marine environment (Te Taha Wairua)

    Students can:

    • form significant personal connections to their local marine environment
    • have awareness and sensitivity about local species and environments and start to care for them.

    Knowledge, skills and understandings (Te Taha Hinengaro, Te Taha Tinana)

    Students can:

    • grow their understandings of no-take marine reserves in New Zealand
    • recognise the role of tangata whenua in marine conservation
    • learn skills to help address marine conservation issues.

    Taking collective action and working with community (Te Taha Whānau)

    Students can:

    • act alongside the wider community to contribute to a healthy marine environment
    • participate in active sharing with the community to celebrate success and action.

    Learning levels

    • Primary
    • Secondary


    • Marine and coastal
    • Animals
    • Plants

    Curriculum learning areas

    • Science
    • Social science
    • Health and physical education
    • English
    • Mathematics
    • Technology


    Teaching approach

    Use our inquiry learning cycle to guide student-directed learning in a conservation context.

    Download integrated learning inquiry cycle (PDF, 1,396K)

    Download this resource

    All activities (ZIP, 8,455K)

    Related resources

    Resources developed for Protecting our marine world:

    Others resources referenced in Protecting our marine world:

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