The Great Barrier Reef threatened

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The Great Barrier Reef of Australia is threatened by a development project in a port area. Indeed, entrepreneurs want to use the port to dump their rubble and waste. Let's take a closer look at how the 8th wonder of the world is threatened by this project.

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“Unesco recently condemned the green light from the Australian authorities to the dumping of dredged rubble in the waters of the Great Barrier Reef, threatening to place it on the list of World Heritage sites in danger. "
Source: La Presse
The following activities will allow students to learn more about what a barrier reef is, how it is made up, its usefulness and the reasons why they are essential to the survival of many organisms.


At the end of the activities, the student will be able to:
- Explain the usefulness of a coral reef;
- Name the species of fish that shelter there;
- Explain the dangers threatening coral reefs;
- Identify countries with coral reefs;

Suggested Activities

ACTIVITY 1: The Great Threat

Introduce students to this cuff in order to facilitate a discussion on the usefulness and the reasons for which the great coral reefs are classified as being essential heritages to be preserved according to Unesco.
Lead a discussion with the students to find out what they know about this barrier reef. What, in their opinion, are the arguments of environmentalists for its preservation and those of entrepreneurs who wish to dump their rubble and waste in the waters of this sea which is home to the largest reservoir of biodiversity on the planet?

ACTIVITY 2: The Great Barrier Reef

Present this documentary so that the pupils are able to appreciate this 8e world's wonder. Give them the following grid of questions to complete so that they can keep track of them while viewing the report.
On this blank question grid, ask the students to write about ten questions, as well as answer choices, in order to develop a questionnaire for other students who might be interested in the same topic.

Click on the image to enlarge.
Download the file in PDF format (.pdf)

The following are examples of questions that students could write:
- What are corals used for?
- Why do fish swim in schools?
- How do the dynamics of the reef change dramatically during the day and night?
- What is the spawning period?
- What happens during the magnetic field of the moon?
Invite students to write their questions inside the platform Didacti. They can easily create an interactive questionnaire for which they will have to indicate the choice of answers for the students who wish to answer their questionnaire. Suggest that they use a single keyword to keep all the questionnaires developed in one place for everyone's benefit.

ACTIVITY 3: Corals, issues and dangers

Distribute a copy of the package Corals: challenges and dangers to the students and then read it as a large group.
Continue by viewing the file below so that you can complete the missing information and answer the questions asked.

Click on the image to enlarge.
Download the file in PDF format (.pdf)
Download the file in SMART Notebook (.notebook) format
No BIT? Download the SMART Notebook version and open it using
of the online application SMART Notebook Express.


For further

Watch videos professional divers who shot striking images for the Catlin Seaview Survey organization, which is in a way the counterpart of Google maps but for the oceans.
Have students become specialists in one of the types of fauna found, in particular, in the Great Barrier Reef.
Learn more by consulting a folder on sustainable development.
Develop a tourist guide in which one of the barriers of endangered world coral would be enhanced. You could even attach an audio recording of the location and post it on Google Maps or a travel blog.

More about the magazine

A sperm bank to save the Great Barrier Reef
Tribune de Genève, January 30, 2012ère_de_corail
Australia: progress in protecting the Great Barrier Reef
La Presse, February 2, 2014
The Great Barrier
Corals in danger
Futur-science, November 24, 2003

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Designed to fill short periods or inspire larger projects, the activities offered in the SCOOP! allow the teacher to approach the subject matter in the program in addition to developing the information literacy and digital skills of the students.

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