Partnerships for Reform through Investigative Science and Math - PRISM

Hawaiʻi's Sandy Shorelines

On this page:

A Hands-on Guide to Hawaiʻi’s Sandy Shore Habitat

Download curriculum in individual sections at the bottom of this page. Also see some more examples of student work. Some of the files are large. Read on for a description of the sandy shores unit or download the unit overview for a complete description of the lesson format, assessment, and content.

Grade Level: 2nd Grade

Purpose: This curriculum is designed to communicate:

  • How the sandy shores of Hawaiʻi are physically and biologically structured.
  • What the major natural and human induced impacts to the sandy shore habitat are.
  • How science and conservation are working together to study the sandy shore habitat and manage the people and resource within the habitat.

Green Sea turtleA green sea turtle on the beach. Rationale: The sandy shore makes up a large portion of Hawaiʻi’s coastal habitats and ranges in color from white, black, green, and red. It provides a habitat for many of the plants and animals that support the lifestyle and culture of island residents, as well as, a place where recreational activities can be enjoyed by all. This curriculum promotes an enhanced understanding within Hawaiʻi’s youth on how the sandy shore habitat functions, how we use and study it, and how that use impacts the habitat. It uses hands-on, inquiry-based activities to promote an enhanced learning about Hawaii’s sandy shore habitat.

A sandy shore dioramaA sandy shore diorama that shows the habitat

A waikoloa sandy shores class field trip to the beachA Waikoloa class field trip

Waikoloa second graders go on a virtual field tripWaikoloa 2nd graders go on a virtual field trip

Hawaiʻi Content and Performance Standards (HCPSIII) Addressed:

Standard 2.1: The Scientific Process. Standard 2.3: Life and Environmental Sciences:Standard 2.4: Life and Environmental Sciences: Standard 2.5: Life and Environmental Sciences

Unit Concept Map

Sandy shores concept mapSandy shores concept map

Downloadable Lessons


This unit was created and piloted by Colby Kearns & Sylvie Bright.