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Fish swim through a coral reef in the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary, off the southern coast of the U.S. state of Florida. The Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary is about 9,600 square kilometers (2,800 square miles). About six percent of that habitat is completely protected, in areas known as ecological reserves, sanctuary preservation areas, and special-use zones.

Photograph by Angela Epperson, MyShot

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David Doubilet & Jennifer Hayes: Coral Kingdoms and Empires of Ice
Article
EDUCATION

David Doubilet & Jennifer Hayes: Coral Kingdoms and Empires of Ice

Use this collection of resources to engage students before and after a National Geographic student matinee. 

  • Best for: Grades 3-8 (ages 8-14)
  • Concepts: animals, antarctica, character education, conservation, coral reefs, david doubilet, geography, jennifer hayes, kimbe bay, marine biology, ng live, oceans, papua new guinea, role models, student matinees, underwater photography
School of Anthias
Article
EDUCATION

School of Anthias

It's a girls' school . . . until some of the girls become boys.

  • Best for: Grades 8+ (ages 13+)
  • Concepts: adaptation, anthias, hermaphrodites, sex
2011 The Great Barrier Reef
Image
EDUCATION

2011 The Great Barrier Reef

Zoom in and explore Australia's Great Barrier Reef.

  • Best for: Grades 2-12 (ages 7-18)
  • Concepts: australia, coral sea, great barrier reef, marine ecosystems, oceania, pacific ocean
Ecosystem Imbalance in the World
Lesson
EDUCATION

Ecosystem Imbalance in the World

Students build on their knowledge of individual impacts on the ocean to see how the whole system can react to threats and changes. They examine ways in which human actions throw marine ecosystems out of balance, explore the concept of how impacts can build, and review their understandings of ecosyst...

  • Best for: Grades 9-12 (ages 14-18)
Marine Ecosystems and Biodiversity
Lesson
EDUCATION

Marine Ecosystems and Biodiversity

Students explore major marine ecosystems by locating them on maps. Students use marine examples to learn about energy transfer through food chains and food webs. They discuss how food webs can illustrate the health and resilience of an ecosystem.

  • Best for: Grades 9-12 (ages 14-18)
Image
EDUCATION

1960 Hawaii

The Hawaii map of July 1960 was published less than a year after the group of islands and reefs became the 50th state in the union. This map shows the whole state, as well as a detailed map of the principal islands. Ocean bathymetry, reefs, and currents complete the picture of this region.

  • Best for: Grades 6+ (ages 11+)
  • Concepts: bathymetry, coral reefs, hawaii, islands, kauai, lanai, maui, mauna kea, mauna loa, molokai, oahu, united states
Ocean Explorer Michael Lombardi
Article
EDUCATION

Ocean Explorer Michael Lombardi

Michael Lombardi explains his deep-diving work and offers suggestions to students who hope to pursue a career in ocean exploration.

  • Best for: Grades 5+ (ages 10+)
  • Concepts: deep-water reefs, diving, explorers, michael lombardi
The Importance of Sharks: You Do the Math!
Activity
EDUCATION

The Importance of Sharks: You Do the Math!

Students learn about trophic levels in a marine food pyramid. Students play a game and complete mathematic equations to learn what happens to coral reef health when shark populations decrease.

  • Best for: Grades 3-5 (ages 8-11)
  • Concepts: coral reefs, ecosystems, food chains, marine protected areas (mpas), ocean, sharks
Scuba Diving
Photo
EDUCATION

Scuba Diving

Photo: Scuba divers study sea life

  • Best for: Grades K-12 (ages 5-18)
  • Concepts: borneo, celebes sea, coral reefs, marine protected areas (mpas), oceanography, parrotfish, scuba, tourism
Coral Reef Fish Survey Simulation
Activity
EDUCATION

Coral Reef Fish Survey Simulation

Students watch a video and discuss coral reef fish surveying methods. Then they conduct a simulated Belt Transect (BLT) survey. Students calculate their data and make estimates of fish populations for a designated area of the classroom.

  • Best for: Grades 3-5 (ages 8-11)
  • Concepts: coral reefs, ecosystems, fish surveying, marine scientists, ocean, transects
Coral Reefs: Ecosystems Full of Life
Activity
EDUCATION

Coral Reefs: Ecosystems Full of Life

Students learn about reef ecology with a focus on biodiversity and symbiotic relationships in the coral reef ecosystem. They play a matching game to identify reef organisms and roles and they discuss human threats to coral reef health.

  • Best for: Grades 3-5 (ages 8-11)
  • Concepts: biodiversity, coral reefs, ecosystems, human footprint, ocean, symbiotic relationships
The Aquarium Trade
Article
EDUCATION

The Aquarium Trade

Watch this brief, video picture of practice that captures everyday classroom life and provides real-life examples of how students learn and think about ocean topics.

  • Best for: Grades 3-8 (ages 8-14)
  • Concepts: aquarium trade, coral reefs, environmental literacy, marine organisms, ocean
Blacktip Reef Shark
Photo
EDUCATION

Blacktip Reef Shark

Photo: a black tip reef shark swimming in the ocean.

  • Concepts: animals, carnivores, coral reefs, fish, ocean, ocean animals, sharks, threatened species
Live Interview from Pitcairn with Enric Sala
Article
EDUCATION

Live Interview from Pitcairn with Enric Sala

Explorer-in-Residence checks in from the field.

  • Best for: Grades 6+ (ages 11+)
  • Concepts: conservation, coral reefs, enric sala, expeditions, explorers, interviews, marine protected areas (mpas), ng live, ocean, pitcairn
Bora Bora Keys
Photo
EDUCATION

Bora Bora Keys

Photo: Aerial view of Bora-Bora, its white beaches ringed by a coral reef.

  • Concepts: coral reefs, islands, keys, pacific ocean
Tahitian Coral Reef
Photo
EDUCATION

Tahitian Coral Reef

Photo: Gaps in encircling coral reef give access to a lagoon.

  • Concepts: coral reefs, islands, keys, pacific ocean, tahiti, tropics
Micronesian Nudibranchs
Photo
EDUCATION

Micronesian Nudibranchs

Photo: Brightly colored coral, brightly colored nudibranchs.

  • Concepts: coral reefs, micronesia, nudibranchs, pacific ocean, tropics
Mataiva Atoll
Photo
EDUCATION

Mataiva Atoll

Photo: Satellite image of a ring-shaped island with a bright blue central lagoon.

  • Concepts: atolls, coral reefs, lagoons, marine ecosystems
Atoll Formation
Photo
EDUCATION

Atoll Formation

Illustration: Formation of an atoll.

  • Best for: Grades 5+ (ages 10+)
  • Concepts: atolls, coral reefs, islands, ocean, volcanoes
St. David's Island
Photo
EDUCATION

St. David's Island

Photo: Aerial photograph of a shallow archipelago.

  • Concepts: archipelagos, bermuda, coral reefs
Bora Bora
Photo
EDUCATION

Bora Bora

Photo: Aerial view of an island.

  • Concepts: bora bora, coral reefs, islands, lagoons, pacific ocean, tropics
key
Article
EDUCATION

key

A key is a small, low island of ancient coral reef

  • Best for: Grades 5+ (ages 10+)
  • Concepts: coral reefs, islands, keys, ocean
Ocean Acidification and Coral Reefs
Article
EDUCATION

Ocean Acidification and Coral Reefs

The Philippines have invested in marine protected areas (MPAs) to conserve their coral reefs. But MPAs cannot protect against ocean acidification.

  • Best for: Grades 6-10 (ages 11-16)
  • Concepts: biodiversity, coral reefs, ecosystems, global warming, ocean acidification, philippines
Marine Communities
Article
EDUCATION

Marine Communities

Download and print these marine community illustrations to learn about the organisms that live in different ocean environments.

  • Best for: Grades 9+ (ages 14+)
  • Concepts: abyssal plain, antarctica, arctic, coral reefs, deep sea, ecosystems, hydrothermal vents, kelp forests, mangroves, mudflats, ocean, ocean animals, open ocean, rocky shore, salt marshes, sandy shore