science education resource

For K-12 Students • Educators • Homeschool Families • Naturalists

Finding Solutions to Humans Damaging Coral Reefs (6-8th Grade NGSS)

To view these resources with no ads please Login or Subscribe (and help support our site).

Though changes in ecosystems are normal and natural over time, humans can cause significant changes that can be devastating and long lasting. Coming up with possible solutions to counter these negative effects is an important exercise. In this performance task, students will come up with solutions to the problem of boats anchoring on and injuring live coral.

Students will do research, come up with potential solutions, build models, and evaluate them for their effectiveness.

1. Discuss the problem. Why do people anchor on coral? Why does it affect the coral?
2. Also discuss what makes a solution practical. For instance, we can suggest that making it illegal to boat near coral reefs would solve the problem, but it cannot be enforced, so doesn’t solve the problem.
3. Their solutions should try to meet the criteria (what they want), but also address the constraints (the needs of the solution) of the problem.
4. They should start by researching the problem.
5. Then brainstorm as many potential solutions as they can.
6. Then do some model building - this can be drawings of possible solution designs.
7. The next step is testing, which will not be easy to do in the scope of this activity, but should be discussed. They can also research how certain solutions have worked in real life and discuss how to improve them.

Boats are anchoring on coral, when they bring tourists out to snorkel. Anchors can injure and even kill delicate coral. Over time, more and more of the coral is damaged making the reef ecosystem unstable and vulnerable.

Come up with a solution that will protect this fragile and important ecosystem.

Finding Solutions to Humans Damaging Coral Reefs (6-8th Grade NGSS)

To view these resources with no ads, please Login or Subscribe (and help support our site).

Citing Research References

When you research information you must cite the reference. Citing for websites is different from citing from books, magazines and periodicals. The style of citing shown here is from the MLA Style Citations (Modern Language Association).

When citing a WEBSITE the general format is as follows.
Author Last Name, First Name(s). "Title: Subtitle of Part of Web Page, if appropriate." Title: Subtitle: Section of Page if appropriate. Sponsoring/Publishing Agency, If Given. Additional significant descriptive information. Date of Electronic Publication or other Date, such as Last Updated. Day Month Year of access < URL >.

Here is an example of citing this page:

Amsel, Sheri. "Finding Solutions to Humans Damaging Coral Reefs (6-8th Grade NGSS)" Exploring Nature Educational Resource ©2005-2023. March 21, 2023
< > has more than 2,000 illustrated animals. Read about them, color them, label them, learn to draw them.