Want to engage your students in a series
of science and math based hands-on activities that really make a difference?
Then dive into SAVE OUR SEAS, a set of K-12 curriculum materials for
your classroom written in 1993 by the California Coastal Commission and
the Center for Marine Conservation (now know as
Save Our Seas is specifically
designed to implement the concepts and approaches embodied in the California Science
Framework as well as other teaching frameworks adopted by the California State Board
Save Our Seas is divided into four
units: grades K-3, 4-6, 7-8, and 9-12. Each unit addresses why we should care about the
marine environment, the ocean pollution problem and how individuals can be part of the
solution. (The 9-12 unit has been updated and is available as the
"Community Action" chapter in the
Waves, Wetlands, and
Watersheds science activity guide. You can download it in
PDF form, with related
The K-6 sections integrate multiple
subjects including science, math, geography, social science, language arts, and art. The
7-12 section is focused on science classes, yet still integrates social issues. Secondary
level students learn field methods and techniques while analyzing the marine debris
problem. Participation in a waterway or beach cleanup is encouraged in each unit with step
by step procedures provided.
The curriculum is designed to encourage
students to think about the complexity of environmental problems and assess the
information available before making decisions. The activities take a hands on approach to
current environmental issues and are designed to help students make personal choices and
realize the individuals potential to create positive and effective changes in society.
Each unit concludes with a success story about what students of all
ages are doing to protect our Earth.
The introduction to each activity
includes the recommended grade level, major subjects from which the concepts are drawn,
major concepts covered in the activity, skills, estimated duration, setting (indoors or outdoors),
and key vocabulary.
Each activity also includes the
objective(s) of the activity, the method employed, background information for the
instructor, materials needed, step-by-step procedures, suggested means of assessing the
students' comprehension of the material, at-home learning activities, extension
activities, and the original source of the activity or information.
The Appendices include handouts required
in multiple activities, a play about marine debris that can be used as an extension
activity, a list of resources that includes agencies and organizations referred to in one
or more of the activities, other available marine debris materials, and a glossary.