+ Oceanography WWW Resources



Selected Oceanography Web Sites

Carolina Coastal Science

Carolina Coastal Science is an innovative, inquiry-based, science resource that utilizes the interactive technologies of the World Wide Web to explore science in coastal Carolina. Carolina Coastal Science has been created based on the goals stated in the National Science Education Standards. While this web site has been designed specifically for an Environmental Science component of a primary and secondary science curricula, it may be used in different curriculum areas.

Teachers and students can use this web site independently or as a class using a number of different teaching strategies including open-ended inquiries, guided inquiries, independent research, and cooperative group learning. Carolina Coastal Science contains an interactive photojournal that students can use to construct their own set of inquiry questions to explore; an inquiry simulation in which students investigate the issues concerning the fate of the Shell Island Resort and then debate the future of this and other oceanfront structures threatened by coastal erosion; a section of "Inquiry Images" which can be used as whole class guided inquiry activities; and a Coastal Research Technology section that students can use to identify the scientific instruments used by oceanographers and coastal geologists to collect data.

An educators guide is provided with a variety of teaching suggestions to incorporate this site into primary and secondary school classrooms.

Estuary-Net Project

Estuary-Net is an excellent website for teachers to use guided inquiry learning activities in their classroom. Estuary-Net was developed by the National Estuarine Research Reserve System in response to water quality issues arising in coastal areas. This project strives to develop collaborations among high schools, community volunteer water quality monitoring groups, local officials, state Coastal Zone Management (CZM) programs and National Estuarine Research Reserves (NERRS) to solve non-point source pollution problems in estuaries and their watersheds. This website provides comprehensive information about characteristics of estuaries, estuarine ecology, water quality monitoring, and quality assurance, quality control, and standard operating procedures of a water quality monitoring program.

This web site contains a database of monitoring data from National Estuarine Research Reserve sites and volunteer sites. Data includes water temperature, water level, salinity, pH, dissolved oxygen, turbidity, and stream flow. Biological variables and bioassment techniques are also included in the dataset. These include water quality, habitat, benthic macroinvertebrates,intertidal organisms, aquatic vegetation, chlorophyll/plankton, and fecal coliform bacteria. In addition to the datasets, the secondary school volunteer sites contain metadata. The metadata includes research descriptors, entry verification, experimental design, research methods, site location and character, data collection period, associated researchers and projects, data table descriptors, and remarks.

This web site provides many classroom activities from the Estuary-Net curriculum. The classroom activities are divided into three levels in order to provide various degrees of involvement in the subject, ranging from lab experiments to single field experiences to long-term monitoring. The benefit of this scaffolding is that schools which do not have easy access to watershed areas can still participate in the Estuary-Net activities by engaging in hands-on/minds-on laboratory activities. All Estuary-Net activities contain objectives, assessments, time needed, materials, procedures, and hypotheses.

Adapting to a Changing Sea - Homepage


The JASON VII expedition was conducted in 1996. This JASON Project investigated marine life and living conditions, including habitats and food sources at the edge of the sea. During JASON VII, researchers, students and teachers investigated several interconnected shallow water habitats in Southern Florida including the Everglades, Florida Bay, Florida Keys and relic reefs. The JASON VII Homepage contains many good learning activities that can be easily incorporated into K-12 science curricula. Detailed descriptions of the entire expedition is provided online, including an in-depth look at the equipment used by the research team.

Oceans Instructional Materials - Athena Project

The Athena Project has put together two wonderful interactive, guided inquiry learning activities that take advantage of oceanographic data placed on the WWW.

In "Tracking Drifer Buoys," students "experience" how oceanographers use devices called drifter buoys to track ocean currents. Students also learn about satellite imagery of ocean topography. Students are presented with a dataset of information to plot on a map. After this practice activity, students must use information from spreadsheet files to locate the Gulf Stream. Science journal activities are also included. This activity is appropriate for both middle and high school students.

"Ocean Color" is an activity that can be used in any K-12 science classroom. This activity examines how scientists interpret satellite imagery. Students create a map which identifies different productivity levels in the ocean and identify areas of continental vegetation.


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