in the classroom
Here are some suggestions for bringing the Ocean Awareness Student Contest into the classroom, brought to you by the Bow Seat team and teachers who have sponsored students in years past. We hope our resources help you and your students explore ocean pollution topics in a fun, engaging, and creative way!
- Play our original Ocean Pollution Jeopardy (PowerPoint) game. Don’t forget the Answer/Resource Sheet (Word)!
- Play our original Ocean Pollution Pictionary (PDF) game.
- Assign the Contest as a final project for a unit. You can even invite another teacher to collaborate! You could combine Science + Art, or History + Creative Writing, or Chemistry + English, or Environmental Science + Social Studies, etc.
- Take your students on a tour of the recycling bins in your school or the greenspaces and storm drains outside your school. Have them take a look at which kinds of materials get recycled (and which don’t!), and what kinds of litter they find. Have your students create a submission that communicates what they saw.
- Have your students explore the nearest stream, creek, pond, lake, or beach to their house and report back to the classroom with a work of art, poetry, prose, or film that explains what they found and what they think.
- Organize a local beach clean-up using Ocean Conservancy’s DIY Cleanup Tool Kit. The cleanup (including found materials) could be used as an inspiration for a Contest submission.
How have you brought the contest into your classroom? We’d love to hear from you at email@example.com.
resources for educators
- National Geographic Society: One Ocean Educator Guide
- Smithsonian’s Oil Spill Kit Lesson Plan (Grades 3-12)
- NOAA Ocean Service Education: Invasive Species Lesson Plan (Grades 9-12)
- Understanding Ocean Acidification: Hands-On Activities
- Noise Pollution and Whale Behavior: A Game
- NOAA Ocean Service Education: Polluted Runoff Lesson Plan (Grades 9-12)
- Scripps Classroom Connection: Ocean Pollution Unit (Grade 9)
- NOAA Marine Debris: Turning the Tide on Trash – A Learning Guide on Marine Debris (PDF)
- North American Marine Environment Protection Association: Educator’s Guide to Marine Debris (PDF)
- Ocean Conservancy & NOAA Marine Debris: Talking Trash & Taking Action Curriculum (PDF)
- NOAA Marine Debris: Posters and Brochures
- Jean-Michel Cousteau’s Ocean Adventures: Debris Dilemmas (PDF)
- Oregon Sea Grant: Mitigating Microplastics Curriculum (Grades 6-8)
- Stow It - Don’t Throw It: Marine Debris Prevention Presentation
- TeachWild: Marine Debris Education Kit (PDF)
- National Geographic Society: Marine Debris – A Legacy of Litter
- Oregon Sea Grant: Marine Debris STEAMSS Curriculum (Grades 4-12)
- Monterey Bay Aquarium: Ocean Plastic Pollution Classroom Activities
- Anderson, H. (2000). A river runs through it: Art education and a river environment. Art Education, 53(6), 13-18.
- Ainsworth, S., Prain, V., & Tytler, R. (2011). Drawing to learn in science. Science, 333(6046), 1096-1097.
- Disinger, J. F. (1990). Teaching Creative Thinking through Environmental Education. ERIC/SMEAC Environmental Education Digest No. 3.
- Hall, N. (2013). Merging Science and Art: The Bigger Picture. The STEAM Journal, 1(1), 9.
- Holmes, S. A. (2002). Creative by nature: Integrating the arts into environmental science education. Green teacher, (69), 23.
- Inwood, H. (2010). Shades of green: Growing environmentalism through art education. Art Education, 63(6), 33-38.
- Rosenthal, A. T. (2003). Teaching systems thinking and practice through environmental art. Ethics & the Environment, 8(1), 153-168.
- Song, K., Imm, Y., & Gammel, J. A. (2011). Ecological mural as community reconnection. International Journal of Art & Design Education, 30(2), 266-278.
- Song, Y. I. K. (2008). Exploring connections between environmental education and ecological public art. Childhood Education, 85(1), 13-19.
As we develop our programs and initiatives, we are very interested in working with teachers and informal educators in any discipline who want to bring ocean literacy + creative arts into the classroom (or beyond!). Please connect with us at firstname.lastname@example.org with your suggestions, questions, or ideas for collaborating!
In the summer of 2014, Bow Seat piloted our first high school and middle school education program through the MIT Educational Studies Program and their summer course, HSSP. We had 15 seventh through twelfth graders for seven weeks. Together, we explored essay and poetry writing, painting, sculpting, and film critique, all in the name of ocean advocacy and awareness.