General resources for all grades

Marine Debris Program, Educational Materials - NOAA,
the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 

A valuable set of materials which include puzzles, brain-teasers, coloring activities, and formal curricula for Grades 1-12.  All materials are available for download and to print.

An Educator’s Guide to Marine Debris 
  • Designed as a stand-alone teaching tool or to supplement lessons for educators in both formal and informal settings. Appropriate for students grades K-12, with a focus on STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) objectives.  Also available in Spanish.
Ocean Pollution Tutorial 
  • Learn about non-point source pollution – what it is, history and types, methods used to detect pollutants and assess and reduce their damaging effects on the environment.

What We Know 
  • How is Plastic Pollution different than NOAA’s definition of Marine Debris? Find out about Types and Sources of Marine Debris, how it moves in the oceans, Impacts and Solutions to the problem.
What’s Being Done? 
  • The problem is immense. The work that is being done is important, but it is resolving the problem? Learn about NOAA’s efforts at Prevention, Removal, Research, Emergency Response and Outreach






Materials also available in Spanish











Ocean_Guardian_School_resized.jpgOcean Guardian Schools

An Ocean Guardian School makes a commitment to the protection and conservation of its local watersheds, the world's ocean, and special ocean areas, like national marine sanctuaries. The school makes this commitment by proposing and then implementing a school- or community-based conservation project.






PBS_Learning_media_logo_resized.pngEngineering for Good - PBS LearningMedia ™ California - The Plastic Problem  - Ten Lesson plans based on Project Based Learning for developing solutions to the plastic issue.  
Grades 5 - 12+






Smog_of_the_Sea_resized.jpgSmog of the Sea for Educators 

Educators and their students can search for a variety of resources to dive deeper into the topic of plastic ocean pollution and solutions. Resources types include lessons plans, pledges, programs, events, toolkits and more, and are organized under the main categories of Science, Solutions and Art in Action.








Turning the Tide on Trash - A Learning Guide on Marine Debris - US Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Oceans and Coastal Protection Division and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) Marine Debris Program

This interdisciplinary guide was designed to provide maximum flexibility in the classroom and includes lessons for
Grades 1 - 12.

Lessons by Grade Level UNIT ONE: The Definition, Characteristics, and Sources of Marine Debris Coming to Terms with Grades 1-6 Marine Debris Trash Traits Grades 1-6 A Degrading Experience Grades 5-8 Marine Debris – Grades 6-8 Data Mining Waste Inventory Grades 3-9 Sources of Marine Debris – Grades 5-9 From Street to Surf, From Hand to Sand UNIT TWO: The Effects of Marine Debris Marine Animals and Grades 2-4 Harmful Debris All Tangled Up Grades 1-4 How Harmful Is Grades 3-7 Marine Debris? UNIT THREE: Working Towards Solutions Nations and Neighbors Grades 4-7 A Scientific Cleanup Grades 9-12 Communicating for Grades 8-12 a Clean Future Taking Action Grades 5-12