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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.

    Rights: The University of Waikato Te Whare Wānanga o Waikato

    Reef zones

    As you go deeper into reef water, the animals and plant life change, from molluscs and cockles to seaweed then bacteria.

    Investigating life in the sea

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

    The noisy reef

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

    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.

    Finding the dog killer

    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 with the Rena disaster and the clean up.

    Rights: Nikki Webb, photo by Nicole Hancock

    Nikki Webb collects marine samples

    Nikki Webb fossicks for unarmoured marine specimens in a rock pool.

    Citizen science

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

    Building Science Concepts

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

    Building Science Concepts: Tidal communities is a partial replication of Building Science Concepts Book 22:

    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 13 January 2023 Referencing Hub articles
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