On this LEARNZ field trip during Seaweek, your students will tackle a major New Zealand problem: the conflict between the many uses of our marine environment.

We are an island nation with very close ties to the marine environment. Our marine estate (New Zealand's exclusive economic zone or EEZ) is 20 times larger than our land mass. 75% of us live within 1 0km of the sea. We value the sea for its resources such as fisheries, tourism, oil and gas and shipping. We also value the sea for food, recreation and spiritual well being. Māori have long standing ancestral and other connections with the sea.

There is a growing conflict between these many uses of our marine environment. How can we manage these many uses? How can we meet the needs of Māori, local communities and industry? How do we make sure that our seas are understood, cared for and used wisely now and in the future?

On this field trip you will travel to Tasman Bay on the top of the South Island. Here you will join researchers who are developing a special tool to answer these questions. This tool is called ecosystem-based management (EBM). Your class will get involved in marine science activity and explore the different ways that Kiwis use and value our coast and seas.

To prepare for this field trip, LEARNZ content will support inquiry into:

  • our marine environment ecosystems
  • different types of marine ecosystems
  • what marine ecosystems do for humans and the environment (ecosystem services)
  • what's a stakeholder?
  • who are the stakeholders in the New Zealand marine environment?
  • cultural, spiritual, economic and environmental values
  • our marine environment under stress
  • ecosystem-based management (EBM)
  • our commitment to Te Tiriti o Waitangi
  • the Sustainable Seas National Science Challenge

During this field trip you will:

  • follow tweets from Shelley the LEARNZ field trip teacher
  • travel to Tasman Bay in the Tasman District
  • take a boat ride with researchers
  • work with scientists to design experiments
  • use instruments and technology to measure our marine environment
  • survey users of the marine environment
  • investigate marine ecosystem services such as providing food, and removing pollutants
  • meet and question researchers involved in the Sustainable Seas National Science Challenge
  • follow what's happening on the website and on twitter at #learnztrip

After the field trip, challenge yourself to:

  • investigate how your local marine environment benefits your community and region
  • get involved in helping make good decisions about our marine environment
  • consider what makes marine spaces important to other people
  • sign up for the Sustainable Seas newsletter to get news and updates about research and working with communities

Where you will go

You will travel to Tasman Bay in the Tasman District. Tasman Bay has both coastal and offshore waters, a variety of marine environments and many different uses, activities and interests - some of which are competing.

For further information, go to http://rata.learnz.org.nz/summary.php?vft=sustainableseas181 

Related content

Explore the Sustainable Seas Challenge and their ecosystem-based management (EBM) system in this article and activity.

This article is full of resources to help with your Seaweek planning.

Visit the topic Oceans and use the filters to find activities, activities and media for curriculum levels and strands. 

We also have two downloadable professional development webinars; Seaweek 2015 with a focus on the nature of science and teacher ideas and Seaweek 2016 with a focus on marine content and planning. This very useful article also lists selection of unit plans and other teacher support materials that we have grouped under possible teaching topics.

Useful link


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