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Mission Blue


6th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th, 12th


Science, Social Studies, Biology, Earth and Space Sciences

Resource Type

  • Videos, 2 minutes, 24 seconds, CC, Subtitles

Regional Focus


Mission Blue: Film Trailer

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  • This video introduces students to Sylvia Earle, a marine biologist and oceanographer who spent her life studying and fighting for the ocean.
  • Students will also learn about her organization, Mission Blue, which is working to help restore and conserve marine environments.
Teaching Tips


  • The video includes interesting footage of the ocean, sea life, and researchers.
  • The tone of the video is hopeful but urgent.
  • It provides young girls with a female role model who made a career in the sciences and started her own nonprofit organization to support her passions.

Additional Prerequisites

  • The full documentary is available to stream on Netflix.
  • Have students check out the map of Hope Spots located all over the planet to see what Mission Blue has accomplished.


  • This video can be a great introduction to lessons about ocean ecosystems, the impacts of climate change on the ocean, and ocean conservation.
  • Use this video to discuss climate activism and career paths, like oceanography, that can help save our planet.
  • Dr. Sylvia Earle describes how growing up near the Gulf of Mexico fostered her love for the ocean. Have students write about how nature has affected their life in a positive way.
  • Social studies classes can discuss why Dr. Earle felt it was necessary to quit her job with the NOAA in order to fight to protect the ocean more effectively.
  • Biology classes can use this video as a hook for lessons about biodiversity, ecosystems, and conservation. 
Scientist Notes
This documentary trailer introduces Dr. Sylvia Earle and her efforts to protect our oceans. The video includes some of her thoughts about the ocean, how it is related to climate change, and how important the ocean is. This video is encouraging and inspiring, especially for girls interested in science. It also briefly introduces activism work and the idea that sometimes you have to make your own path, outside of work, to make a difference. This would be a great introduction to discussing ocean conservation, the importance of the ocean in our environments, and activism. Not many specific scientific concepts are presented. The information that is presented is accurate, and this resource is recommended for teaching.
  • Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS)
    • ESS3: Earth and Human Activity
      • MS-ESS3-4 Construct an argument supported by evidence for how increases in human population and per-capita consumption of natural resources impact Earth's systems.
      • HS-ESS3-3 Create a computational simulation to illustrate the relationships among management of natural resources, the sustainability of human populations, and biodiversity.
  • Common Core English Language Arts Standards (CCSS.ELA)
    • Speaking & Listening (K-12)
      • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.6.2 Interpret information presented in diverse media and formats (e.g., visually, quantitatively, orally) and explain how it contributes to a topic, text, or issue under study.
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