Año Nuevo SMR

Marine Protected Areas

  • Note: This course can be played via Flash or HTML5. If you would like to play the Flash version and don't currently have Flash installed, download the Flash Player here.



These modules, developed by California State Parks and California Department of Fish and Wildlife, teach students about what MPAs are, why they were created, and how they are being monitored for progress. The modules align with both Common Core State Standards and the Next Generation Science Standards. They are written at a 5th grade level, but are easily adaptable for students in grade 3-7. Start with the introduction module titled "Dive In." Next choose one, or all three, of the specific MPA modules (Año Nuevo, Crystal Cove, or Pyramid Point). Finish with the conclusion module titled "Resurface." Students may work independently, in groups, or led by the teacher.


Dive In

MPAs were created with six main goals in mind. This module will introduce students to some of those goals and explain why ocean habitats and habitat communities are important resources that humans should protect and sustain.


Año Nuevo SMR

Año Nuevo SMR is located along California's central coast right off Año Nuevo State Park, home to a large breeding colony of elephant seals. In this module, students will discover the ways in which this SMR could be protecting elephant seals and other organisms sharing this habitat.



Students will reflect on their learning about MPAs by interpreting MPA data and reviewing main points through a series of interactive videos.


For more information, questions or if you require special accommodations to access this content,
 please contact the Interpretation and Education Division at interp@parks.ca.gov or (916) 654-2249.