learn & share

Check out these downloadable resources to help you share the ReefLove!

Activities for Children

Printable Placemats: These place mats feature pictures of reef animals that your kids (or you – if you are a crafty colorer!) can decorate. They also feature fun facts about coral reefs and reef-friendly options for sun protection. We like to use the place mats as  templates for water color resist projects. Just trace the lines in brightly colored crayon and fill in the shapes with beautiful watercolors to make your own reef. Cover the finished project with contact paper for a low-cost lamination so you can wipe and enjoy your new place mat each morning.

Lesson Plan: How Well are You Protected? In this activity, students use sun-sensitive paper to compare the effectiveness of different materials and types of sunscreen. Through this activity, they determine if alternatives that are less harmful to marine life are as effective as chemical-based sunscreens.

Download lesson plan here.

Web Sites and Online Articles

Check out these web sites and articles for more information on…

Impact of personal care products on coral and other marine life:

  • Haereticus Environmental Laboratory A non-profit scientific organization dedicated to increasing the scientific, social and economic knowledge of natural environmental habitats in order to better conserve and restore threatened environmental habitats and resources. 
  • Lathering Up With Sunscreen May Protect Against Cancer – Killing Coral Reefs Worldwide” 2015 article on the University of Central Florida Today website describing the impact of sunscreen on coral reefs.
  • “Sunscreen Pollution” Article by Dr. Craig Downs on AlertDiverOnline, the online magazine of Divers Alert Network, which is the largest association of recreational scuba divers in the world.
  • Why Hawaii Is Trying To Ban A Common Sunscreen” Online Popular Science article about pending legislation in Hawaii to ban sunscreens containing oxybenzone. 
  • Looking for a Reef-Safe Sunscreen? Ask a Surfer” Online Conde Nast Traveler article about impact of sunscreen on marine life and reef-friendly alternatives.
  • Danovaro, Roberto et al. “Sunscreens Cause Coral Bleaching by Promoting Viral Infections.” Environmental Health Perspectives; 16.4, Apr 2008, pp. 441-7. Journal article describing the relationship between sunscreen and coral bleaching.

U.S. coral reefs:

  • NOAA Coral Reef Conservation Program Website containing scientific and educational information about coral reefs and reef threats, health, and monitoring programs as well as current news related to the coral reefs and lesson plans for teachers.
  • U.S. National Park Service: Underwater Website containing information and multimedia about the underwater resources protected by the U.S. National Park Service, including coral reefs as well as other ocean and freshwater sites. This website also includes a downloadable Underwater Explorer Jr. Ranger booklet.

Coral reefs around the world:

Have a suggestion for a great website? Send it to us?