A Bit of Engineering

A Bit of Engineering Activity Source: Adapted with permission by JOI Learning. Background Courtesy Earth Science World Image Bank; Copyright © Noblecorp The JOIDES Resolution is an amazing ship that contains all the equipment necessary to drill into the ocean floor for samples of rock and sediment: a derrick, drill pipe, drilling tools, and drill bits. Once the cylindrical core sample arrives on the rig floor, the drill crew passes the 10 m core to technicians. [Read More]

Cracked Plates & Tectonics

Cracked Plates & Tectonics Activity Source: Adapted with permission by Esri. In this activity, you’ll investigate dynamics in Earth’s crust that explain multiple Earth science phenomena. For the full activity, go to http://esriurl.com/ESW2016. Materials A computer/projector with internet connection Take these “tech tips.” Measure: At the top of the map, click the Measure button. Hover and click the Distance button. Click continuously along what you want to measure. Double-click to finish. [Read More]

Deep-Sea Drilling

Deep-Sea Drilling Activity Source: Adapted with permission by Deep Earth Academy. The JOIDES Resolution (JR) has physical dimensions unlike most oceangoing vessels. Why? So that scientists can sail nearly anywhere in the world to drill for samples of rocks and sediment from below the seafloor — in hopes of discovering clues about Earth’s history and structure, life in the deep biosphere, past climate change, earthquakes, and natural resources. Note for teachers: The JR has a flat bottom, a 6. [Read More]

Drill Site Dilemma

Drill Site Dilemma Activity Source: Consortium for Ocean Leadership. Adapted with permission. For teacher: The Integrated Ocean Drilling Program (IODP) is an international research program that explores the history and structure of Earth as recorded in seafloor sediments and rocks. It seeks to expand the reach of several previous programs by a collaborative union between the United States, Japan, and the European Union. The JOIDES Resolution is the research vessel that is operated by the United States. [Read More]

Earth's Hydrologic Cycle

Earth’s Hydrologic Cycle Activity Source: Adapted from the Ocean Institute Curriculum Series Overview The ocean is the key element in Earth’s hydrologic cycle (water cycle). Students will construct a simple model of the hydrologic cycle to help them visualize and understand the movement of liquid water and heat. Concepts The hydrologic cycle is the continual movement of water from one place to another and from one state of matter to another. [Read More]

Exploring Climate Change with GIS

Exploring Climate Change with GIS Activity Source: ESRI. Adapted with permission. Earth’s climate is a product of and is affected by many things—and it’s changing. Long-term and short-term processes, such as plate tectonics and volcanism, contribute to climate. Likewise, human influences, such as rising CO2 levels from fossil fuel burning and deforestation, play active roles. The expression of climate change is seen in a variety of forms: Erratic weather patterns and rising sea levels are among the most discussed. [Read More]

How Dangerous Are Tsunamis?

How Dangerous Are Tsunamis? Activity Source: Adapted with permission by Geological Society of America. Imagine playing beside the ocean, when suddenly, the water drops. Where the water used to be, there are wriggling fish and ribbons of seaweed. What do you do? You could be seeing the first sign of a tsunami ─ a long wave formed in the ocean when the sea floor moves suddenly. Most tsunamis happen because of large earthquakes on the ocean floor. [Read More]

Measure for Measure

Measure for Measure Activity Source: Adapted from Joint Oceanographic Institutions in the Classroom, 2005. Background Geoscientists use special boats to conduct research at sea. One of these boats is named the JOIDES Resolution (JR). Unlike most oceangoing vessels, the JR has a flat bottom, a 6.4-meter hole in the middle, 12 laboratories, and a derrick towering 67 meters above the waterline! Why? So scientists can sail nearly anywhere in the world to drill for samples of rocks and sediment from below the seafloor. [Read More]

Measuring Glacial Retreat

Measuring Glacial Retreat Activity Source: Adapted with permission by U.S. Geological Survey. The USGS has been studying glaciers in Glacier National Park since 1850. It is estimated that there were 150 glaciers in the park back then, and when the national park was established in 1910. Today only 25 glaciers remain. Scientists go back every year to repeat photographs, as well as to examine the ice and the ecology of the landscape to see how glacial retreat is affecting plant and animal species that live there. [Read More]

Ocean Acidification

Ocean Acidification Activity Source: Adapted with permission by National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. The ocean is a “carbon sink,” which means that it removes CO2 (carbon dioxide) from the atmosphere. The ocean currently absorbs about one-third of the CO2 released by the burning of fossil fuels. However, beyond a certain level of atmospheric CO2, the ocean can no longer act as a carbon sink without it having a negative impact on marine life. [Read More]