A 60-minute lesson in which students will investigate sustainable fishing practices.
This lesson plan includes the following resources:
This lesson contains a link to an external video. Please watch the video prior to presenting this lesson to ensure that the content is appropriate for your students.
Review the problems associated with human fishing practices in the 21st century, e.g., depleted fish populations, excessive waste, damage to marine environments. Explain to the students that, in order to reduce the problem, action must be taken to encourage more sustainable fishing use around the globe. Action can take place at:
a global level (international organizations, such as the Marine Stewardship Council)
a national level (governments)
an individual level (people).
Explain to the students that the decrease in fish stocks in recent years has prompted international organizations and governments across the world to take action against unsustainable commercial fishing practices. Consumers, or people who eat seafood, have also become more proactive about knowing where their seafood comes from and how it was caught.
What is the purpose of the Marine Stewardship Council?
How might the MSC label help people make responsible choices when buying seafood?
Explain to the students that individuals can be very powerful drivers of positive change when it comes to issues such as sustainable fishing. By only buying seafood from sustainable sources, consumers can send a strong message to commercial fisheries that unsustainable practices are no longer acceptable.
Using the MSC label for inspiration, ask the students to design their own sustainable seafood label. The label should be simple, clear, and easily identifiable by a consumer, e.g., the MSC label has one image, only a few words, and a distinct blue background.
Monitor and support the students as they design and create their sustainable seafood labels. Encourage the students to experiment with various ideas first before drawing and coloring their design on a blank piece of paper.
Once the students have finished, ask them to share their sustainable seafood labels with the class. Encourage each student to briefly explain the reasoning behind their design choices. Display the students’ work in the classroom for the remainder of the unit.
Encourage fast finishers to write a paragraph describing the imagery used in their sustainable seafood label.
Allow less confident students to verbalize their ideas for their sustainable seafood label before beginning the task.
Suggested Assessment Strategies
used strategic whole class or individual questioning
observed student participation during learning activities