Ocean Plastics

X-Curric | Ages 7 - 11

Ocean Plastics 7-11 is a cross-curricular unit of work encompassing science and geography which also develops skills in mathematics, citizenship and spoken language. The unit addresses four key questions; what are plastics, where are plastics, what impact can plastics have and what can I do? These questions are answered by developing students understanding of properties of materials, living things, habitats and human and physical geography. The unit explores the pros and cons of a variety of plastic products, investigates how plastic finds its way to the ocean and looks at what changes can be made on a local and global scale. Students understand the complex issues surrounding oceans plastics through this units optimistic and innovative approach to challenging attitudes and behaviour.

Download Unit Download Unit

Lesson 1: What are plastics? Part one

In this lesson students investigate the properties of materials and develop an understanding of why plastic is so widely used due to its versatility.

Lesson 2: What are plastics? Part two

Students continue to develop their knowledge of plastics, including the different types of plastic, and get a chance to make some slime.

Lesson 3: Where are plastics? Part one

Students follow the life cycle of a plastic bottle. Using Google Maps, students track the journey of a plastic bottle during its lifetime.

Lesson 4: Where are plastics? Part two

In this lesson students discover some of the incredible uses for plastic and reflect on why single-use plastics have become unpopular.

Lesson 5: What impact can plastic have? Part one

Students are introduced to microplastics and ocean plastics and begin to understand how and why it occurs through investigating case studies.

Lesson 6: What impact can plastic have? Part two

This lesson sees students investigate how plastics get into the oceans and affect marine life.

Lesson 7: What can I do? Part one

The last two lessons in this unit challenge students to work collaboratively to create a campaign based on the 6R’s.

Lesson 8: What can I do? Part two

Students review the success of their campaign and the impact it had on plastic consumption.

Lesson 9: Design Technology - The plastics problem

Students attempt to solve a problem by evaluating existing solutions and designing a more sustainable product.

Lesson 10: Design Technology - The plastics solution

Students review some alternatives to single-use plastics and plan, design and develop an idea for a sustainable alternative to single-use plastics.

Brought to you by

Teach the goals

activity age bookmark-fill icon bookmark boy-girl calendar chevron-down icon close icon compass cross icon download encounter-live external icon facebook gallery icon instagram icon Instagram icon linkedin links icon location mail icon map next play previous professional-development right-arrow icon search share single image social-media speaker spinner icon students subject-update teacher-resources tick icon time twitter user video-lesson video youtube