EARTH 2015 – Day 5

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Friday – July 24, 2015

Location: Hatfield Marine Science Center Guin Library

0800 Breakfast—breakfast starts at 0630 and all teachers (including locals) are welcome to have breakfast at the hotel
900–1130 Presentations— (15 minutes each)


Bycatch Design Challenge

Adam Galen, Anna Rodgers, Chloe’ Ruffin

Students will be introduced to the issue of bycatch in the fishing industry by learning about albatrosses getting caught on fishermen’s hooks.  They will also learn about the methods that scientists and fisherman have developed to reduce albatross bycatch.  Next, students will be presented with the problem of designing a net that will reduce bycatch by catching adult salmon but not catching smaller fish.  They will test their design and record and analyze their data.

Lesson Plan Page

Where did you come from and how did you get here? (and why do I care?)

Chris Ampersand, Kara Allan, Dana Spink

The earthquake off the coast of Japan in March, 2011, and the subsequent tsunami, deposited nearly 5 million tons of debris (known as JTMD) into the ocean. This created a unique opportunity to study the dispersal of floating debris, and the organisms attached to it, by the surface ocean currents.

In Lesson 1 students will construct models of ocean surface currents to explain JTMD dispersal, and then use articles, videos, and satellite images of global air currents and surface ocean currents to adjust and revise their dispersal models. Finally, students will compare and contrast their model to a marine debris dispersal map created by NOAA to make observations about scientific models and determine ways to test their viability.

In a second lesson, students will use the Japanese Ministry of the Environment’s predictions of the amount of debris lost in 2011 and the landfill data from Long Beach, WA, collected in 2013, to calculate the amount of debris collected thus far. Students will create a data collection plan that could be implemented to generate more reliable data of JTMD dispersal or the dispersal of debris after a future event.

Lesson Plan Page

Don’t Be Trashy

Alia Thompson, Katrina Alegado, Olivia Swanson Jern

Overview Presentation

Hitchhiker’s Guide to Marine Debris
How does marine debris from a tsunami affect the ocean and shorelines?  Scientists are actively studying the affects of the earthquake that hit Japan in March 2011 and marine debris is continuing to wash ashore on the Pacific Coast of North America and Hawai`i. Students will be exploring the affects of a tsunami with marine debris and invasive species through article reviews, analyzing near-real-time data, engaging with Aurasma to explain their findings, evaluating their research, and elaborating their knowledge through extension and enrichment activities for all grade levels.

Lesson Plan Page

Don’t Be Trashy

Marine debris is defined as any persistent solid material that is manufactured or processed and directly or indirectly, intentionally or unintentionally, disposed of or abandoned into the marine environment or the Great Lakes.  This activity will serve as a catalyst for students to derive connections between their actions and the impact on the environment.  Students will observe marine debris from around the world, collect their own trash data around school, and use technology to further research.  Once the data can be compared, students will communicate their findings in a group setting.  Students will improve their inquiry, organizational, and higher order thinking skills by data and technology resources.

Lesson Plan Page

Aurasma Tutorial

Aurasma, available on a variety of mobile devices, is a free web-based app that is used to create augmented reality (AR) experiences on a computer as well as a mobile device.  Augmented reality differs from virtual reality in that it does not seek to simulate reality.  Instead, the goal of augmented reality is to add contextual data and layers to deepen a person’s understanding of a real object or location. As wireless computing devices become more accessible, it is projected that the use of augmented reality technology will also rise. Benefits to students include: creating richer learning environments, connecting formal and informal learning, combining technologies with objects/ locations that are familiar to students (EDUCAUSE, 2005).  The Aurasma tool can be easily integrated into any EARTH lesson to further prepare students for 21st learning.  Aurasma is a great tool for both teachers and students to create their own content and communicate information.

Lesson Plan Page

What’s Growing On?

Megan O’Neill, Kathy Couchon, Katie Sard, Katie Lodes, Slade Sapora, Kama Almasi

Unit Overview Presentation
This unit focuses on the importance of Nitrogen (N) and Phosphorous (P) in the environment, cycling of these elements in ecosystems, limiting factors for growth, population growth and carrying capacity. Students will explore how N and P move through the environment, calculate growth rates from data provided from authentic science conducted at Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI), predict how these nutrients will impact marine environments, and conduct algal growth experiments including observations and data collection.

It is important to note that these lessons were created in a way that allows them to be used on their own or in conjunction with one another as a “mini-unit.”

Where do the Nutrients go?

Nitrogen and Phosphorus are essential to life, but how do they travel through the environment? This activity will give students an opportunity to explore this question with a lesson on the cycles of these elements. The introductory video has a built in assessment that can be used to create a flipped classroom lesson and the fill in the blank cycles game can be used for a collaborative effort between students.

Lesson Plan Page

Making Air Out of Oceans

In this two-part lesson, students will create a graph using data collected by scientists (Dr. Alex Worden and Dr. Amy Zimmerman) to test their predictions about the effects of nutrients (nitrogen and phosphorous) on the abundance of phytoplankton (Ostreococcus) in the world’s oceans.  Students will then use a blank world and an interactive map database to make and analyze predictions about what parts of the world’s oceans are the most biologically productive. Throughout this activity, students will answer written prompts that ask them to think critically about the data they are working with and the larger processes they are analyzing.  This assignment can be done individually or in small groups.

Lesson Plan Page

Rating the growth of Pico-phytoplankton

In this lesson, students will use density data from a laboratory experiment conducted by researchers at MBARI to calculate growth rates of phytoplankton, graph the data, collaborate to look for patterns in the data and then communicate their conclusions.

Lesson Plan Page

Carrying Capacity in Pico-phytoplankton

In this lesson, students will use graphs from experiments conducted by researchers at MBARI to estimate carrying capacity.  They will compare their estimates to actual carrying capacities generated from a Logistic Growth Model and analyze the resulting trend of increasing nutrient concentration on population size. Students will communicate their analyses in writing and/or in a presentation to their peers.

Lesson Plan Page

Student Lab Experiment

This lesson provides students the opportunity to design an experiment to determine the effects of nitrogen and phosphorus in common garden fertilizers on the growth of a population of phytoplankton. Photosynthesis by phytoplankton plays a vital role in the transfer of carbon dioxide and oxygen in the global ecosystems. In this unit study of nutrient cycles, students investigate how variable amounts of nutrients affect the daily growth and carrying capacity of phytoplankton. Through the design of their own experiments students will gather data to share and communicate with their classmates. They will be developing experience in the planning and execution of experimental design as well as data analysis and communication.

Lesson Plan Page

Can You Hear Me Now?

Lindy McCulloch, Sean Bedell, PJ Collson

In this lesson students are going to compare sound data to the length of the animal making that sound. The students will try to make a correlation between the frequency and the length of the animal, which will lead to a discussion/exploration of the connection between frequency and wavelength. This lesson falls into the greater context of teaching principals of sound and waves. This lesson can be used to introduce the concepts of frequency and wavelength of sound waves or to help reinforce and build upon prior knowledge of properties of sound waves. The students will analyze data collected from hydrophones that are shown on spectrographs. Students will explore recordings of marine mammals to gain knowledge of waves and then apply that knowledge to analyze the link between frequency and wavelength. The students will be developing graphing skills, analyzing,

Lesson Plan Page

Seeing Sound

Darrin Matthies

In this lesson students will read about the properties of waves as the relate to sound.  Students will also experience demonstrations of how longitudinal and transverse waves move through a medium.  Students will also be introduced to spectrograms and how they allow for us to study sounds.  They will then apply this knowledge to try and match spectrograms to the correct source.

Lesson Plan Page

Who Fouled the Water?

Amie McShane, Faith Forshee

This lesson introduces students to the concept of harmful algae blooms in local water sources through the lens of human impact.  Students will be completing an experiment in which they compare two water samples from a local source: one contaminated with fertilizer and one without.  They will collect data, graph results, and compare two variable looking for any patterns and correlation.  Through critical thinking, students will explain the impact humans have on local water sources, as well as possible solutions to the problem.

Lesson Plan Page

Where Have All the Seabirds Gone?

Elizabeth Eubanks, Robyn Ehrlich, Susan Shepard, Helen Haskell, Handy Acosta Cuellar

This unit encompasses lessons and activities that involve multiple grade levels using seabirds as the unifying theme, starting with an overview on birds; why and how scientists study them. The first lesson, “What’s That Function?” guides students through the various adaptations of marine birds that allow them to survive in unique environments.  The second lesson,” Albatross Arithmetic”, uses real data to engage students in analyzing data to investigate if researcher’s hypotheses are supported. The final lesson “Seabird Populations” strengthens students’ science process skills by allowing them to make inferences and draw conclusions using real data.

What’s That Function?

Students will identify structures and traits of seabirds that make them successful survivors in their specific habitat.

Lesson Plan Page

Seabird Populations

The “Seabird Populations” activities provides students with a (guided) opportunity to explore data and use it to make inferences and draw conclusions about a specific seabird population.  The first of the three activities (murre studies) allows students to familiarize themselves with the specific study site and methods through exploration with Google Earth, photos, and tracking data.  The second activity (can I have some murre data?) guides students through analysis of population, food source, and reproductive success data.  And the third activity (murre or less?) can be used as an assessment, requiring students to put it all together to draw conclusions and make suggestions about the seabird population.

Lesson Plan Page

Albatross Arithmetic

Using data collected from research on short tailed albatross, students will observe, infer from, question and analyze data to learn if actual research hypotheses were supported.  Students will become exposed to marine bird research techniques including satellite tracking and the use of Google Earth as a scientific tool.   Students will be engaged in mathematical practice, including sense making, reasoning and precision.

Lesson Plan Page

Tag, You’re It!

Miriam Sutton, Carrie Lee

This lesson provides a guideline for students to become Citizen Scientists as they explore relationships between migratory patterns in marine organisms with short and long-term changes in Sea Surface Temperature (SST). This lesson simulates a LTER (Long Term Ecological Research) study by allowing students to track shark migratory patterns over time using the OCEARCH Shark Tracker software and applications and NANOOS Visualization System (NVS) Climatology data sets. Students will compare OCEARCH’s satellite tracking data for pelagic apex predators (sharks) with NVS’s SST maps to observe for patterns and trends in migratory behaviour.

Lesson Plan Page

1130–1200 Final Evaluation—
1200–1300 Lunch—Box lunches
1200 Safe Travels home!

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