Week 5: The Plastic Ocean

Published by gyoung on

Most of us use plastic every day in some way or another. Some of us recycle the plastic, BUT some of us just throw it away. This week we will see just how devastating plastic in the ocean really is.

Watch the video below as an introduction to this eye opening topic.

A Plastic Ocean – Video

Myth VS Reality

WATCH – Plastic in the ocean: A graphic overview

In the graphic overview you will find several myths and the truths behind each these myths.

To Do – Make a list of the myth and describe its reality.


World Ocean Day

 Fact Sheet: Plastics in the Ocean

TRASH TALK: The Great Pacific Garbage Patch

How Much Trash Is In Our Ocean?

For Animals, Plastic Is Turning the Ocean Into a Minefield

BEST kit 2017

BEST Consumable Kit 2017

Become an expert, make a difference, do something about it……


The Oceans Are Drowning in Plastic — And No One’s Paying Attention

Click on this link and become the expert on how plastic is ruining our oceans.

There are several great, yet scary articles in this link that will show you what bad shape our oceans are in.  After reading some of these articles, make a poster that outlines the most devastating facts you can find. Take a picture of your poster and send it to bestology@bestinc.org.  The BEST posters will be displayed on the BEST Robotics website and at the regional championships.

Design and innovation

Can These Inventions Save Oceans From Our Plastic Habit?

Here are some very interesting innovations that we are trying in order to clean up the plastic in our oceans.

Go to this link, and learn about these inventions.

See if you can come up with an idea on how to collect plastics from the ocean. Brainstorm ideas and see if you can come up with a machine that can clean up plastic in the ocean. This is a great practice for brainstorming as you will be doing a lot of this during the BEST competition.

Foreign Help – Let’s bring it local

Click on this name, BOYAN SLAT, and read about this incredibly smart young engineer and see how he is participating in THE OCEAN CLEANUP

  1. What are we as Americans doing to contribute to the Great Garbage Patch in the Pacific Ocean?
  2. What can we do to help prevent this?

Discuss ways that you as an individual, you as a group of students at your school or in your community can work together to prevent this from getting worse.


Below is a poem that Brian Lieu wrote about the devastation of plastic

Brian Lieu

It never goes away…
It kills, but can’t be killed…
The albatross was full…
What’s stopping us from being full
one day…?
(We’re already fool…)
Our greatest phobia should be of it and of what it can do…
My greatest phobia should be of it and of the fact that I contributed…
Number 1 Polyethylene terephthalate Number 2 high-density polyethylene Number 3 polyvinyl chloride
Number 4 Low-density polyethylene Number 5 polypropylene Number 6 polystyrene
Number 7 Other…
What more lurks behind the darkness of Other…?
A new phobia in the development…
What more will be killed by Other…?
Fish are friends, not recycle bins…
Birds look better in the air than in the ground…
How much of the ocean will be inherited by Other…?
Underwater real estate is in demand…
How much more of Earth will be inherited by Other…?

Now it’s time for you to become the poet.

Write a small poem about the problem of plastic in the ocean.

BEST Connection

Look at your BEST kit, consumables and returnables and determine which of these could possibly land up as plastic garbage in our oceans. Once you have made your list then discuss how you can avoid this from happening.

Community Connection:  Making the difference

  1. What is the next step in plastic waste reduction? Do you think it starts with you? Us? Or does it need to come from higher up?
  2. What is your city, community, school district, neighborhood, or city doing to help with waste reduction?

Bloom’s Taxonomy: add, create, explore, evaluate, generate, include, identify, list, observe, reflect, review, subdivide, use, and write

Workforce Skills: critical thinking, materials evaluation, reading comprehension, science, writing

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