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    The rocky shore is a popular topic in primary school science. Below are some Science Learning Hub resources for primary teachers related to the rocky shore in the Living World strand of the New Zealand Curriculum that might be helpful.

    Investigating life in the sea

    After reading the introductory article, check out some of the creatures you can find on the rocky shore.

    Cockles – Article

    Sea stars – Article

    Mussels – Article

    Build a marine food web – Activity

    The noisy reef

    After reading the introductory article, check out what lives on the reef - and makes noise!

    Noisy kina – Article

    Crabs finding home – Article

    Kina and the blue economy – Article from the Sustainable Seas National Science Challenge looking at if we can use kina as a new food source.

    Explore the various survey methods used by students, scientists and iwi in the Reef Life project in this Connected article.


    During 2009, several dogs died on Narrow Neck and Cheltenham beaches in Auckland. What killed them? Was it something from the rocky shore? Could it hurt humans, too? Find out more in the introductory article.

    Kaimoana in the Hauraki Gulf – Article

    Sea slugs and TTX – Article

    Solving the dog death mystery – Article

    Toxins and food webs – Article

    Grey side-gilled sea slugs – Article

    Monitoring shellfish – Article

    Tracking toxins – Activity

    Collaboration – Video

    Testing for toxins in kaimoana – Video

    Bioaccumulation in the sea – Interactive (Note – this is a Flash interactiuve, we are looking to replace)

    The harbour is a precious place for all things marine, and [obtaining] more information about what is in it or going into it is important to protect it.

    Alice Morrison

    Where land meets sea – the Rena disaster

    New Zealand is surrounded by sea. Our coastlines and marine resources need care and protection. What happens when disaster strikes? The introductory article follows what happened and the clean up.

    Habitats in the Bay of Plenty – Article

    Biodiversity in the Bay of Plenty – Article

    Iwi and kaimoana – Article

    Rena wrecked on reef: oil clean-up on-going – Article

    Where do I live? – Activity

    Introducing biodiversity – Activity

    Rapid response to the Rena – Video

    What now for the Rena? – Article about this Connected article.

    Citizen science

    Students and scientists teamed up to monitor Otago Harbour as part of their citizen science initiative:

    Sediment and seashores – monitoring Otago Harbour – Article

    Marine Metre Squared – Article

    Making and using a quadrat – Activity

    Building Science Concepts 

    Life between the tides is a partial replication of Building Science Concepts Book 21:

    Useful links

    NIWA have a range or identification guides, fact sheets, posters and more on New Zealand's marine flora and invertebrate fauna.

    The Marine Metre Squared website has numerous resources to help with monitoring, from ID guides (in te reo and English) to how-to videos.


      Published 2 July 2015, Updated 20 July 2021 Referencing Hub articles