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Living a Life Less Plastic

Investigating the plastic pollution problem


Suitable For: Stages 3 -6 Science/Geography

Note: This program can be extended to a whole day program for more intensive studies in Stages 5 and 6. Please speak to the Education Manager for further information.


Activity a: Beach Detectives

Location: Clifton Gardens Beach

A life without plastic? Unthinkable! Plastic is present in every aspect of our lives, where we often we throw it away after having used it only once! Plastic, in its various forms, is now the number one item littering our beaches and the ocean. In this session, students will learn and apply scientific sampling methods to investigate the pathways for plastic pollution in Chowder Bay, and quantify the amount of macro- and microplastic on the beach.


Activity b: Managing the Invisible Threat

Unlike natural materials, plastic never completely disappears! Plastic is not biodegradable, instead it degrades into smaller and smaller fragments called micro plastic pieces, which persist in the environment for a very long time. They can be found everywhere – in parks, gardens, the ocean and of course Sydney Harbour. Microplastics in the harbour settle down on the harbour floor and are washed on our beaches. Some of these pieces are so tiny that they cannot be seen with the naked eye. We know only very little about their impact on the environment, wild animals and human health. We also have no idea how much is lurking in the harbour. In this activity students analyse their collected sand samples from Clifton Gardens Beach for micro plastics using a range of scientific techniques. 


For program details and bookings please contact education@sims.org.au