The Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority's Reef Beat education series encourages teachers and students to explore the amazing Great Barrier Reef, threats to the Reef, ways to protect the health and resilience of the Reef, and the people who are working together today to help protect the Reef for tomorrow.

The themes and links to the  Reef Beat education series since 2003 are provided below:

Reef Beat 2016: threats to the Reef

This Reef Beat education series, threats to the Reef, encourages teachers and students to explore the Great Barrier Reef, threats to the Reef and ways to protect its health and improve its resilience.

The series complements our educational resources and includes five short videos and an activity book.

Students explore the greatest threats to the health and resilience Great Barrier Reef:

  • climate change: sea temperature increase, altered weather patterns, ocean acidification and sea level rise
  • coastal development and catchment modification: clearing and modifying coastal habitats, artificial barriers to flow, and disposal and resuspension of dredge material
  • land-based run-off: nutrients from run-off (including its links to crown-of-thorns starfish outbreaks), sediments and pesticide run-off
  • remaining impacts of fishing: illegal fishing, collecting and poaching, incidental catch of species of conservation concern, effects on discarded catch, retained take (extraction) of predators, and retained take (extraction) from unidentified or unprotected spawning aggregations
  • marine debris: land and sea sources.

All actions — big or small — are vital for the Reef’s future. Students can help the Reef recover from the legacy of past actions and be better able to withstand those predicted to threaten its future. This series aims to encourage students to learn about and care for their local environment, in turn contributing to the health of the Great Barrier Reef.

Reef Beat 2013

The 2013 Reef Beat education series, the amazing Great Barrier Reef, let’s keep it great, takes teachers and students on a journey of why the Great Barrier Reef is amazing, both in beauty and scale, and highlights its importance as a national and international icon.

The Great Barrier Reef was declared a World Heritage Area in 1981 because of its outstanding universal value, the first coral reef ecosystem in the world to receive this international recognition. No other World Heritage property contains such biodiversity.

The 2013 Reef Beat education series includes a poster (best viewed and printed in A0 size) and a curriculum-linked activity book. The poster, showing a map of the Great Barrier Reef Region, complements the activity book and they are designed to be used together in the classroom as a valuable learning resource.

Students can explore the amazing Great Barrier Reef around the following topics discussed in the poster and activity book:

  • Multiple-use Great Barrier Reef Marine Park and zoning of the Marine Park
  • The Great Barrier Reef’s outstanding biodiversity
  • Traditional Owners of the Great Barrier Reef
  • Ongoing geomorphological processes
  • Protected species
  • The Reef’s social and economic values and attributes
  • Heritage of the Great Barrier Reef
  • It’s all connected
  • Visit the amazing Great Barrier Reef

This resource is designed to be used as a teaching tool in the classroom. We have provided an indication of the relevant year levels (Early Years to Year 12) for each activity in the book based on curriculum outcomes however the activities can be modified to suit any year level.

The activities in the book are linked to the Australian Curriculum Science and History (version 4.2) and Geography (May 2013). There is also a Year 11–12 Marine Science activity included in the activity book linked to the Marine Science Senior Syllabus 2013. The cross-curriculum priorities, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories and sustainability, feature in the poster and activity book, as does building student investigation skills.

The curriculum content was correct at the time of production (May 2013) however, for the latest curriculum content descriptions please see the Australian Curriculum.

We appreciate your feedback, so if you have comments or questions about the 2013 Reef Beat education series please contact us via email.