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F 75P The Wet Paper legacy 1970 - 2020

This product is proudly Australian Made


Published Date : 07 May 2021

Product Code : F 75P

Format : Free PDF for download

First draft 

The early years 

University of Queensland and Dip Ed (1968 - 1971)

Paula and Bob met at a Uni party in 1969 and they married in Bob's final year.  At that time there was only ONE university in Queensland.  Lectures were at St Lucia and field work at the Dunwich research station in Moreton Bay.  

With no jobs in marine science at the time and a child on the way, Bob ended up doing a Dip Ed while Paula continued her Secondary teaching.  

Kingaroy SHS (1973 - 1975)

Marine education began with 4 students in senior zoology and a yearly field trip to Coolum in one of the parents holiday home.  When Biology was introduced in 1974, the program expanded with longer excursions to Coolum surf club. 

After 3 years of hard work and a second child, Bob was transferred to Gladstone where he took up a position as Science subject master. 

Gladstone SHS (1976 - 1981)

Gladstone Oceanography Studies Program (GOSP).

The science of snorkelling

Bob came up with the idea of combining Navigation and Snorkelling with the new Qld Multistrand Science Syllabus as well as Navigation, Marine Biology and Oceanography.   Paula typed many of the notes at home on here old typewriter or onto wax masters that would be run on a gestner machine (you will have to google that).

Project reef ed

The program was extended to reef trips to North West Island involving the newly formed Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority where Bob intruded a snorkelling unit and the science staff trialled many of the units in their Project Reef Ed.

School reef trips

The experiences of over 10 school camping trips to the reef are summarised in the North West Island reef trip booklets and we are sure that we have left a lasting legacy in this area of education.

Benowa SHS 1982 - 1989

Science Teachers Association of Queensland Marine notes (1980 - 1984)

STAQ published a series of Marine Science classroom notes written by Bob and published at the Brisbane Education Centre.  MTAQ put all the profits towards marine science inservice.

Coastal and Estuarine Biology

Coastal physics

Estuarine chemistry

Navigation and Geology

Boating and field methods

First Marine Studies Syllabus (1984 - 1989)

In 1984, Bob was asked by Education Qld to write the first marine studies syllabus and sample work program.

With help from the Brisbane South Education Office, he founded the Brisbane South Marine Studies Program in 1985 and with a dedicated staff in Gold Coast schools, began networking schools from around Queensland.  The programs developed by teachers of this era laid the foundations for Marine Education in Queensland as it stands today.  You can read how they did it at:

Brisbane South Marine Studies Project (1985 - 1989)  

Between 1983 and 1987, the teachers in the program wrote, distributed and trialled a range of marine studies and marine science curriculum materials in monthy workshops.  The enthusiasm was infectous from Director General to Lab Assistant, Year 12 to Year 8 and marine communities from Beenleigh  to the border.  In 1986, the Board of Secondary School Studies agreed to form a committee to turn the Ed Qld Marine Studies syllabus into a University entry BSSS subject using the books listed below as a template.


Marine sampling methods - for which a boat was required

Fisheries biology

Estuarine chemistry
Coastal physics
Outdoor education  

Funds raised from these sales and numberous grants from Education Queensland allowed teachers to run workshops, and network each other on new ideas and evaluation methods and a State Association was proposed early 1985.

The Marine Education Society of Australia (1985 - c2017)

Supported by the Victorian Institute of Marine Science, Queensland In-service Education committee and the newly formed Brisbane South Marine Education project, about 70 delegates from around Australia were invited to present a series of papers and workshop ideas from around Australia at the Broadbeach International hotel on Queensland's Gold Coast.

Since 1985 MESA has had a remarkable number of achievements including State and National conferences, Seaweek celebrated each year, coordination role in national marine centres and an archival web site with thousands of resources hosted now by AAEE.

The Queensland branch of MESA soon formed and local and regional workshops began.  Boats and equipment were purchased and a series of marine sheds and buildings sprung up in coastal schools.

Wet Paper (1988 - 2020)

Funding for a commercial marine publishing operation was beyond the scope of Education Queensland so Bob was given the blessing of the Benowa SHS P&C and granted 5 years leave without pay from Education Queensland to follow his dream.  Supported by John Pitman from the Board of Secondary School studies, he wrote a series of books the content of which, was incorporated into the trail and later pilot Marine Studies Syllabus.

First books (1988 - 1992)

Classroom navigation

The barrier reef world 



Commercial printing (1993 - 2012)

 MTAQ forms

  WaterWise and WaterWatch influenced syllabus devlopment and content




E publishing (2013 - 2020)



The birth of the Marine Teachers Association of Queensland (MTAQ 1994-1995)

Marine Vocational education - influence on MAP (See ASTF reports additional information below)

How AUSMEPA started and MTAQ's role 

Primary Marine Studies in Australia - The Kids and Water project 2002 - 2005


The birth of Surfrider Foundation and the role of activism in marine studies and marine science (1992 - 2020)

The birth of BSSS Marine Education Syllabus, then change to Marine and Aquatic Practices (2004 MAP), then Aquatic Practices.

The 1992, 2002, 2010 Marine Studies Syllabus

The role of Wet Paper, Marine Studies and Marine Science

The birth of the 2018 Marine Science Syllabus

Teachers Information

Written by Bob Moffatt

Founder Education Queensland Marine Studies Syllabus, Brisbane South Marine Education Program and Wet Paper Publications.  Co-founder Gladstone Oceanographic Studies Program, Marine Education Society of Australia, Marine Teachers Association of Queensland, Surfrider Foundation and the first Board of Senior Secondary School Studies Marine Studies Syllabus.  Life member MTAQ, Life member Surfrider Foundation, winner 1985 STAQ medal, author, co-author or publisher of the books on this web site.

Grandfather to six wonderful grandchildren; husband to an absolutely fabulous wife and business partner for over 50 years.

Additional Documents

ASTF Voc Ed project reports 1996 - 1998

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