Educational activities for children – with a diving focus!

Self isolation definitely isn’t fun. While I don’t have any any young children of my own, I know of the challenges of finding fun, exciting and educational activities to occupy the kids during this Covid-19 crisis, and we at STEPDive want to help!

Below you’ll find a fantastic list of resources about our amazing underwater world, all that can be accessed from your living room. We’ve included reading and visual materials to inspire, documentaries that share environmental challenges, but also potential solutions for ocean preservation, coloring in materials and much more!

Monterey Bay Aquarium Live Stream

Take a (virtual) field trip to the Monterey Bay Aquarium! This Californian aquarium has setup livestreams so students can observe ocean creatures in real time. Play with the sea otters, check out the jellyfish, or even swim with sharks! The aquarium also has fact sheets about its inhabitantscurriculum plans, and lots of other activities.

National Geographic’s Ocean Education Collection

National Geographic has designed a range of cool activities for young learners (K through 12). Create your own living room adventures to understand the parts and sizes of waves, demystify the Mariana Trench, explore why people live near the coast, or even size yourself up against a blue whale!

STEPDive Coloring In Drawings

Feel free to download these great coloring in activities! There’s 3 to choose from:

Where Wild Microbes Grow by Kevin Kurtz

These freely downloadable eBooks are part of the International Ocean Discovery Program, funded by the US National Science Foundation. Where the Wild Microbes Grow: The Search for Life Under the Seafloor is just one of the freebooks created by Kevin Kurtz, an award-winning children’s author, and Alice Feagan, an award-winning illustrator.

Netflix Documentaries

Chasing Coral (YouTube Trailer): A team of divers, photographers and scientists set out on a thrilling adventure to document the disappearance of the world’s coral reefs.

Mission Blue (YouTube Trailer): Follows world renowned oceanographer Sylvia Earle on her personal mission to save the ocean.

Journey to the Bottom of the Ocean

This interactive site lets visitors dive deeper than any human has before! As you scroll down the page, the ocean “depth” increases; the blues turn to black and an array of deep water animals appear. Start on the surface and work your way towards the wreck of the Titanic!

US NOAA Educational Resources for Children

Visit the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) educational resources for a range of fun activities. Kids can learn about the Sea Level Rising, or even play a whale migration e-board game found in the NOAA’s game center. There are also plenty of worksheets using NOAA data to keep students occupied!

Amazon Prime Video Documentaries

Beneath the Sea (YouTube Trailer): a celebration of marine life from around the world by Emmy Award Winning Cinematographer, Howard Hall.

Galapagos: Realm of Giant Sharks (Vimeo Trailer): the whale shark is the largest fish in existence, yet so little is known about them.

Secrets of the Ocean Realm Activities by PBS

These fantastic exercises will help your children learn all about the ocean environment, from coral reef preservation to diver decompression. Designed for 10-14 year olds, these classroom activities include background information, activity plans and discussion topics – helping to build our ocean advocates of the future!

Our hearts and wishes are with everyone right now, so please stay safe and healthy.

See you underwater (after the crisis)!

:: Darren

Discover a world of night diving

Underwater Cleanup World Record

A record-setting 633 divers came from across the world to participate in a huge underwater cleanup, resulting in at least 1,626 pounds (737.5 kgs) being removed from Deerfield Beach, Florida!

Whilst the official weight of the marine debris removed is still being tallied, ocean conservation group Project Aware estimates that the result could be twice as much!

Supported by the Deerfield Beach Women’s Club and Dixie Divers, it was the 15th time this event has been held and lasted for approximately 2 hours.

According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), about 8 million metric tons of plastic enter the ocean annually. Hopefully events like this will continue to raise awareness for the prevention of plastic and other human produced waste!

For the full article, please visit CNN. Pictures courtesy of CNN – no copyright infringement intended.

See you underwater!

:: Darren

DIWA Partnership

Coral Reef Ecology for Kids – Join the adventure to Towabonga!

Meet the mightiest builders on Earth and get to know why corals need our help through the new educational kids comic, ‘Coral Heroes’. Illustrated by Bernhard Speh and published by SECORE International, readers join the coral kids ‘Al’, ‘Samy’, ‘Jo’ and ‘Bran’, as well as the unique ‘Doc Kraken’ through two lovingly drawn tales – one of reef ecology and the other of a mystic night dive.

The comic’s aim is to equip children and teenagers with knowledge about coral reefs and why they are threatened, potentially setting the premise and foundation for a future generation of decision makers, practitioners, conservationists and environmentally conscientious citizens. “We want to spread the word how precious coral reefs are, what a wonderful underwater world they thrive in and how fragile their status is these days,” says Dirk Petersen, founder and Executive Director of SECORE. “Giving coral reefs a future, the claim of our organisation, includes reaching out to the young generation; the ones that will see if our joint efforts will eventually be successful.” The comic magazine Coral Heroes aims at educating kids on coral reef ecology, mainly addressing ages 8 to 12 years, whilst having fun!

The award winning illustrator, Bernhard Speh, who brilliantly brought Coral Heroes into life has explored many coral reefs as a diver himself: “I am enthralled by the colorful and often bizarre inhabitants of the diverse coral community. They are alive with inspirations and stories, which we just have to marvel at. The more I get to know about this spectacular and also fragile underwater world, the more fascinated I am.”

Coral Heroes can be downloaded at and is freely available for any institutional education purposes, or just for fun. So far, an English and a German version of the comic has been produced. Both can be downloaded via the links below:

All kinds of teachers, zoo or aquarium tutors, scoutmasters and others are invited to use Coral Heroes. An additional presentation about coral reef ecology can also be provided as a helpful background resource for compiling a lively lecture about coral reefs.

I hope you enjoy reading and learning from this comic as much as I did.

See you underwater!

:: Darren

STEPDive: A new discovery experience

Learning to dive is a thrilling yet somewhat daunting experience. After all, resisting our basic survival instincts to complete entry-level skills such as breathing underwater, mask removal/replacement and basic buoyancy can be quite challenging.

Predicting whether or not student’s will conquer initial fears or even enjoy diving thereafter is difficult, and often part of the reason for them not committing to a full scuba course. Of course, time, money or perceived complexity of the equipment also play a factor. But all of this can change!

Imagine not having to complete so much pre-dive theory or wear such heavy equipment. You simply strap on a harness and go snorkelling – but with a SCUBA regulator! Almost the same experience is offered, but without the complexities, weight or stress and in a completely safe and secure environment. Perfect right?

Depending on the dive center and surrounding water conditions, STEPDive can be offered in many cases as an excellent intermediary program; especially for families who want a shared underwater experience. With STEPDive’s unique and patent pending Variable Depth Control, instructors and students can have full confidence knowing that:

  • Everyone begins on the surface and as divers grow in confidence, can progressively go deeper;
  • Divers practice the same introductory dive skills (signals, breathing rules, equalisation techniques, regulator and mask clearing, etc);
  • Students are depth limited (STEPDive is fully adjustable between 0 – 5m); and
  • Even students younger than 8 can give it a try (but only at the surface – see Children and Diving: Are they ready? for more information).

So whether you’re a potential diver wishing to make an informed decision about a full certification course, or a business owner who is keen to streamline their shop’s discover experience, see how STEPDive could work for you.

See you underwater!

:: Darren


STEPDive at the DEMA Trade Show 2018

The annual DEMA Show is the largest trade-only event in the world for companies doing business in the scuba diving, ocean water sports and adventure/dive travel industries. It attracts hundreds of exhibitors and thousands of dive and travel industry professionals from around the world each year.

STEPDive was proud to be an exhibitor this year, with much interest generated by our product.

Several articles have since been written and if you’d like to check them out, please visit the following links: