Mangroves matter massively

Lesson overview

Visit the mangrove forests of Indonesia and learn about how different groups view the mangroves, before seeing how they can come together to protect this amazing ecosystem. This is the second of three lessons in this unit that look at an individual blue carbon habitat in more detail.

Learning outcomes
  • List the location of mangroves and their natural features
  • Understand the importance of mangroves
  • Explore the different views of coastal groups towards mangroves
  • Propose how groups can work together for a better future for mangroves

See the Fact Sheet All about mangroves for background information on mangroves.

Lesson steps

1. Introduction to mangroves and Indonesia (10 mins)

Use slides 2 to 5 to connect to the previous lesson’s learning if you have taught this, then introduce the learning objectives to the class. The focus for this lesson is on exploring the second of the blue carbon habitats, mangroves. Slides 8 to 10 give a basic overview of mangroves as well as its global range shown in the blue outline on the map. Slides 11 to 13 introduce the location for this lesson, Indonesia, and some teachers may wish to reinforce students’ use of geographical descriptions using compass points.

2. Mangrove journey (10 mins)

Using slide 14, outline that students are about to visit the mangrove forests of Indonesia. Hand out Student Sheet Mangrove journey for students to note what they see in the video. Alternatively, ask students to note down any interesting things they see or questions they have. This can be done individually or in pairs. Show the embedded video on slide 15 and have students make notes on the student sheet.

Review the activity as a whole class discussion. Students may note that they saw:

  • Muddy coast
  • Strange mangrove roots to allow these trees to grow in saltwater
  • Fish using the root system for shelter and as a nursery
  • The close forest around small channels
  • The strange mudskipper fish that has adapted to be able to skip across mud using their strong front fins, and their gills are adapted to absorb oxygen from the air
  • A mangrove viper poised on a branch
  • The proboscis monkey with its funny nose
  • Egrets in the top of the mangrove trees with a settlement in the distance

The video can be reviewed and paused to show any of these that students missed on first watch.

3. Mangrove facts (10 mins)

This is a simple comprehension exercise for students to learn some of the top facts about mangrove forests and specifically in Indonesia. Hand out Student Sheet Top 10 facts about Indonesia’s mangroves. You can read through the text as a class or allow students to work through the student sheet independently. An answer sheet is provided to allow for self or peer assessment, and the answers to the question are also provided on slide 19 to 20.

4. Mangroves matter activity (20 mins)

The heart of this lesson is the mangroves matter activity. This examines how different groups view the mangroves and how different views are held. An Activity Overview provides detailed instructions on how to run this lesson step. Groups of four students will work best.

Introduce students to the idea of stakeholders, before reviewing the content of the stakeholder cards as a class.

Placing of the stakeholder cards into the different groups may need modelling depending on the ability of the class. Students may feel that stakeholder cards can go into more than one category and this is fine. Life is not always simple!

Review student choices using slides 24 to 26. Probe student choices by asking for reasons for their choices.

This activity ends with an emphasis on working together. What conversations would improve the future of the mangroves in Indonesia? A model answer is given on slide 29. Choose whether you would like this to be a group discussion activity or whether students should write an answer in their books independently.

5. 3-2-1 mangroves (10 mins)

Conclude the lesson with this 3-2-1 reflection activity. Students can be asked to share their answers and thoughts in a plenary discussion.