The National Aquarium runs an extensive range of education programmes for early childhood, primary, secondary and tertiary students. Via the tabs below you can find out more about our programmes, associated activities and worksheets, along with additional educational information relevant to the New Zealand Curriculum
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Have you ever seen a living fossil? How much do you really know about New Zealand's national icon, the Kiwi? Take a journey to the Australian outback and touch a Blue Tongue Skink! In this unit students explore animal life histories, food chains, adaptations and the survival techniques of animals from New Zealand and around the world.
Discover how marine biologists and scientists classified the animals at the National Aquarium. Learn how both vertebrates and invertebrates are organised into different phyla and classes by their common characteristics. Students will get to develop their own classification systems based on careful observation and creative thinking.
Planet Earth and Beyond: AO: 5.4. This programme explores the positive and negative impact humans have on aquatic environments. Marine reserves, extinction, Māori beliefs, the interdependence of living things, food chains and pollution are covered and examined during this unit.
- Environmental Issues Worksheet for Year 9 - 10
- Environmental Issues Worksheet - Shark Focus
- Environmental Issues Post Activities Workbook
- Environmental Issues Pre Activities Booklet Part 1
- Environmental Issues Pre Activities Booklet Part 2
- Environmental Issues Pre Activities Booklet, Activity Sheets
- How Ocean Pollution Affects Humans Infographic
In this programme, students use evidence from landforms, rocks and fossils to describe geological history. They'll discover how fossils are formed and how they're actually remnants of an ancient and very much different life on Earth. Students will investigate and describe processes, which change the Earth's surface over time at local and global levels.
- Fossils and Dinosaurs
- Useful Websites
- How did the Dinosaur Become Extinct
- Dinosaur Worksheet 1
- Dinosaur Worksheet 2
- Diving into Dinosaurs Worksheet
What made the Kiwi endangered and the Moa extinct? What makes them birds when they can't even fly? Close observation of Moa bones and a taxidermied Kiwi engages students with the aquarium's New Zealand birds of the past and present, their adaptations and the influences that have caused their endangered to extinct statuses.
How have evolutionary forces affected New Zealand's fauna? Students observe many examples of evolutionary outcomes to further understand how the processes of evolution have shaped New Zealand’s unique fauna. They examine how different forms of natural selection and speciation act on the National Aquarium's animals.
How can so many species of fish live in the same habitat? Adaptation and diversity. Explore the different habitats in the National Aquarium and discover how a diverse range of aquatic animals adapts to survive in their environment.
Students will observe examples of fish defences including camouflage, schooling, fish communication and toxins.