Lesson Plans

Each year OACIS fellows and teachers contribute some of their most successful lessons to our curriculur archive.  We encourage educators to use and adapt these lessons to their science classroom needs.

Carbon Cycle

This 50 minute lesson teaches students about the carbon cycle, how it works, and why it’s important.

Carbon Cycle Lesson Plan | Carbon Cycle Handout | Carbon Cycle Powerpoint
Jessica Lundin, 2010

Cells Lab

This dynamic, multi-part lab teaches students about cells and particular structures that underlie their functions.  Lecture includes a discussion about cells, cell components, and component functions.  Students look at cells from marine and terrestrial examples under microscopes.  They use what they learn to design their own specialized cells.

Cell Lab Lesson Plan | Cell Lab Handouts
Kevin Turner, 2010

Dark Ocean

This 80-minute, interactive lesson teaches students about how light wavelengths penetrate different depths of the ocean and how marine animals adapt to different light conditions.

Dark Ocean Lesson Plan | Dark Ocean Presentation
Amanda Bruner, 2010

Hydrothermal Vents

This 50-minute lesson introduces students to the connection between ocean geology and biology, and reinforces concepts taught in plate tectonics. Students learn about causes for hydrothermal vents, their rich communities of animals, and seafloor features.

Hydrothermal Vents Lesson Plan | Hydrothermal Vents Handouts
Amanda Bruner, 2010

The Ocean from Space Lab

This two-day lesson and lab teaches students about NASA’s SeaWiFS Project, which uses satellites to look at changes in ocean color to monitor types and abundances of phytoplankton.  The project provides critical information about primary production in the ocean and the role of the ocean in the global carbon cycle. Students participate in an interactive lecture and lab that illustrates the SeaWiFS Project.

The Ocean from Space Lesson Plan
Elizabeth Tobin, 2010

Olympia Oyster Library Research Project

This one to two-day lesson teaches students about native and non-native marine species, by exploring ecology and conservation the Olympia oyster, an oyster native to Puget Sound.

Olympia Oyster Lesson Plan | Olympia Oyster Handouts
Dan Evans, 2010

Water Density and Marine Organisms

This two-day lesson and lab connects concepts of seawater density, ocean stratification, and density driven circulation to marine life.  Students look at how these affect the distribution of marine organisms in a lab that simulates estuarian environments.

Water Density Lesson Plan | Water Density Presentation | Water Density Video Clips
Elizabeth Tobin, 2010

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