Marine sciences to be introduced as a school subject in SA

Posted by Imogen Searra on 17 January 2019

The Two Oceans Aquarium has established itself as an institution that imparts knowledge about the oceans that surround our country in an engaging manner. Those fascinated by oceanlife and keen to protect this important part of the environment may be happy to learn that marine science will be rolled out as a high school subject across South Africa from 2020.


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Yesterday was #WildlifeWednesday 🌴Here on Naifaru, we spent the day snorkeling on our beautiful reef 😍 🐚 Did you know that coral reefs are home to around 1/4 of all ocean species but only take up less than 1% of the ocean? 🌊 This means that coral reefs are incredibly important ecosystems for the health of our oceans! 💙 . Without coral reefs, many species would lose their homes and would die, others would lose their breeding grounds and nurseries 🦈🐠🐟🦐 . With rising ocean temperatures and increasing ocean acidification, coral reefs are suffering now more than ever🌡️😖 When the ocean becomes too hot, corals will expel the zooxanthellae algae, causing the coral to bleach white and either succumb to diseases or starve to death 💔 . The only way corals will survive is if humans stop emitting the huge quantities of carbon dioxide that we currently pump into the atmosphere every day ☣️ You can help by putting pressure on your government to divest from fossil fuels! Consumers have the power to change policies! 💪💚 . #AtollVolunteers #AtollMarineCenter #FunFact #ClimateChange #CoralReefs #Reef #MarineBiology #MarineConservation #Volunteer #ChangeTheWorld #TravelGram #Travel #Turtle #CoralReef #Nature #Naifaru #LhaviyaniAtoll #Maldives #WanderMore #MarineEcology #OceanLife

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Three schools in the Western Cape have been selected to be the pilot group of Grade 10 learners who, if successful, will receive a Grade 12 marine science certificate from the Two Oceans Aquarium upon matriculation.

The Two Oceans Aquarium has partnered with Gaansbaai Academy, Simon’s Town High and South Peninsula High. These schools will launch the Marine Science program this month with the pilot group of Grade 10s. The pilot will ultimately assist teachers with learning about the marine science subject and curriculum before it is introduced as an official Matric subject for the Grade 10 learners of 2020.

The Two Oceans Aquarium Environmental Education Team can be thanked for spearheading the introduction of marine science as an official school subject. The pilot curriculum was created by Russell Stevens (Head of Education at Two Oceans Aquarium), Xavier Zylstra, Kirshia Koumbatis, and Anzio Abels.

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MAJESTIC · AS · HECK 🐢🐢🐢 Bob is just – wow! Be sure to say hi to this gorgeous animal on your next visit. ••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••• 💙 Thanks for the awesome photo @kara_berkow 📸 ••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••• #2oceansaquarium #twooceansaquarium #aquarium #animals #capetown #southafrica #cityofcapetown #capetownvibes #meetsouthafrica #capetownbound #thisisafrica #weheartsa #amazingcapetown #underwater #sea #ocean #bob #turtle #seaturtle #greenturtle #blue #gentle #love #loveanimals

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The Two Oceans Aquarium’s education department is well-known for the incredible work done at its base, the Aquarium, each year. An estimated 70,000 learners are exposed to teachings of the marine world and another 30,000 learners make up the two outreach programs that the Aquarium offers. The Environmental Education Centre of the Aquarium has been also been offering enrichment courses for Grade 6 to Matric since 2005. This is what prompted the national Department of Education to approach the Aquarium’s education team about creating this curriculum.


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MEET · A · SUPERSTAR 🌟🌊🌟 August is a great month to make a new friend – and the Skretting Touch Pool is the perfect place for your little ones to meet ours! ••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••• 💙 Thanks for the photo Karin Schermbrucker 📸 ••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••••• #2oceansaquarium #twooceansaquarium #aquarium #animals #capetown #southafrica #cityofcapetown #capetownvibes #meetsouthafrica #capetownbound #thisisafrica #weheartsa #amazingcapetown #underwater #sea #ocean #sea #underwater #orange #starfish #seastar #motivation #fishgram #instafish #august

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The curriculum will cover five sub-disciplines: marine geography and geology, marine chemistry, marine physics, marine biology, and humans and the ocean. The last sub-discipline is imperative for learners to gain an in-depth understanding of the effects of human activity on our oceans and on environmental issues such as ocean acidification and climate change.

By introducing a subject as relevant and versatile as marine sciences, learners and, perhaps later, the environment, will benefit hugely. Sharing such knowledge at school level will hopefully see the future South African marine scientists making proverbial waves in this field.

Gaining an understanding of marine science is of paramount importance to the future of our oceans, which makes teaching it to school learners all the more valuable.

If your child is interested in enrolling in this class as a extra subject but does not attend any of the three node schools, it is still possible for them to apply; visit the Two Ocean’s Aquarium’s website here for more information.


Image source: Pixabay


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