Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute

EARTH Workshop 2003

EARTH Workshop Home | Schedule
Climate | Iron Story | Immersion | Mooring Data | TOPP | Sardine/Anchovy
Design Challenge | VARS | C.O.O.L. Classroom | MBARI Data | Citizen Science

Climatic Cycles | Back to top

  • Are we currently experiencing an El Ni—o or La Ni—a/El Viejo or La Vieja?
  • Look at Pacific Decadal Oscillations (PDO) graphs (ocean temp)
  • Look at historical data
  • Predict when next oscillation will occur
  • Global warming discussion

Iron Story | Back to top

  • Long term study to go with study of online results (possibly coupled with population study of planktivores)
  • What happens to the excess biomass (environmental consequences)?
  • Students become various members of decision makers (scientists, policy makers, naturalists, etc.) and discuss the issue of iron fertilization based on research and collaboration
  • Food chain dynamics—if we increase one level, how will another level be affected?
  • What triggers ice ages (inquiry project)?
  • Investigate the CO2 and ocean interaction with increasing CO2 from human activities

Immersion Experience | Back to top

  • Create a video game that simulates the Immersion experience using video clips from MBARI’s database

Mooring Data | Back to top

  • Small student groups interpreting same data sets—compare results, interpretations; question why similar/different
  • Graph data (ex. depth, temp, sal) and calculate speed of sound; graph on excel or plot on paper
  • Explore seasonal cycles in ocean
  • Compare above/below surface condition and cycles
  • Choose a specific organism(s), research their range of tolerances, then use buoy data to predict where they might be
  • Graph wind speed vs. wave height

TOPP—Tagging of Pacific Pelagics | Back to top

  • Movement of pelagic organisms vs. high pollution areas
  • Movement of pelagics with respect to temp/salinity data to correlate with currents or ocean H2O masses
  • After data has been mapped/plotted, students research what human influences exist in these areas (MPAs, long-line fishing, etc.)
  • Correlate data for individual animals w/satellite imagery telling SST or productivity (observatory or mooring data)
  • Follow elephant seals out into the Pacific and hypothesize why they go there; look for data to support idea
  • Develop bingo-type approach using 4-5 phylum groups, animal characteristic, name, etc.
  • Use the animal tracking to examine gene flow in a population (i.e., habitat overlap vs. isolation)
  • Use fish tracks to calculate longitude of fish’s location using time data (introduce chronometer)
  • Use tuna data to teach homeothermy, life history; discussion of fishery management
  • Have each student choose an organisms to track and develop life history
  • Relate biological tracking to physical environment (look for patterns)
  • Are patterns of pelagic movement related to location of marine sanctuaries (i.e., are they where they need to be)?

Sardine/Anchovy Story | Back to top

  • Easily implemented data that gives complex results that are easy to discuss
  • Use graphing directions/excel with other types of data
  • Very useful to illustrate decadal change in local waters—helps to understand the more complex issues of understanding and measuring global warming
  • Data analysis—causal vs. correlative relationships
  • Using data sets to teach fundamentals of Excel, graphing and forming conclusions
  • Have students investigate data to determine lifecycles of marine life along CA coast

Tech Museum Design Challenge | Back to top

  • Exercises to teach how temp and sal affect density
  • Document each group’s work with many digital pics, students use pics in class to take a more analytical look at their process of problem solving and to connect their solution to the concepts being studied
  • Week long lesson:
    • Monday—float/sink buoyancy
    • Tuesday—density activity using different materials and flotation
    • Wednesday—discuss design of an ROV/item pick up challenge
    • Thursday—finalize design
    • Friday—MBA ROV-in-a-box; design, build and test
    • Extensions—Citizen Scientist data
  • After the activity, use only one variable (i.e., just temp or sal); put in story problem-solving format
  • Have students use a field journal to sketch their design, write hypothesis regarding why design will work/why it did or didn’t

Marine Observatories | Back to top

  • Students design a marine observatory of their own that samples temp at different depths
  • Design your own observatories (e.g., Tech Design Challenge) and then look at relationships to real observatories (design and function)
  • Correlation of different data sets to predict/understand marine events
  • Show PowerPoint presentation and have students create their own commercial for why we should study the ocean
  • Do instruments alter phenomena (Schrœdinger's Cat)?
  • Use Web sites for students to develop understanding of how ocean is studied; develop into poster projects/career ideas

VIMS/VARS | Back to top

  • Research a particular animal from the annotations and determine what ranges it occupies (depth, salinity, temp, etc.)
  • Bingo-like board with 5 phyla as headings and 25 frame grabs; using knowledge of the phyla, students can drag organisms under correct phyla; immediate feedback given; time limit —clock; that runs to avoid students guessing
  • The pictures are just the beginning of the story—use frame grabs that illustrate behaviors (ex. octopus and blenny sharing nesting area) and find physical, chemical, biological (etc.) factors that the nesting sites share
  • Give groups of students different lists of organisms; students use VARS to find out where the organisms are found and what their environment is like (behavior, too); students could compile information in a cross-sectional map of ocean

C.O.O.L. Classroom | Back to top

  • Good vector illustrator to show resulting motion
  • Use data collection to predict quality of fishing/surfing, etc. (using current, temp, winds, etc.)
  • Create links to compare to other observatories or data collection instruments
  • Produce a daily forecast from the science class
  • Use MB data to look for fish
  • Use ‘Gone Fishing’ as intro or finale to further study of ocean upwelling patterns

MBARI Data | Back to top

  • Plot patterns over time (physical) and study relative to biological
  • Develop scenarios (El Ni—o, oil spills, etc.) in which students can problem solve to determine causes/effects using the data
  • Have students investigate how we are studying the CA coast and who is doing it, why, what are we looking for
  • When students see a strange occurrence (e.g., lots of jellies), they can look through the data and see what might trigger such an event
  • Use physical parameters to predict where similar organisms may be likely to be found in a different region

MBARI Citizen Scientist | Back to top

  • Offer several different views of organisms so students can make detailed observations and speculate about function of structures, adaptations, etc.
  • Examine morphology/anatomical features vs. depth
  • Develop field guide, accessible from Web site
  • Taxonomy—use of dichotomous key
  • Collaborate (or compete) with other students/schools
  • Bingo-type naming game
  • Have a way for students/participants to be able to check their work
  • Create levels of achievement for varying abilities
  • After successfully ID-ing stills, further challenge by providing video clips to find the species they have gotten familiar with
  • Have students investigate organisms’ shapes, characteristics, adaptations
  • Students/groups create their own field guides for a specific phylum

EARTH Workshop Home | Schedule
Climate | Iron Story | Immersion | Mooring Data | TOPP | Sardine/Anchovy
Design Challenge | VARS | C.O.O.L. Classroom | MBARI Data | Citizen Science

Last updated: Sep. 24, 2009

Full-hemisphere views of the Earth from GOES (Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellites).
GOES satellites are built by NASA and operated by NOAA.

EARTH logo designed by Jennifer Trask, 2003