Grades 4 through 6
Students will create an oil-spill simulation, and observe the characteristics and effects of an oil spill. Observations will be recorded by keeping track of how the oil spill changes in size and appearance.
Students will investigate how temperature differences in the ocean can cause currents. Students will participate in an experiment that will help them to visualize what happens when water with different temperatures interact. A demonstration of the way in which salt water sinks will be performed as part of a discussion of currents. The experiment and demonstration may touch on density, evaporation, water cycle, tides, gravity, the moon, and the sun.
Grades 7 and 8
Students will use tide charts as a tool for decision making. Decision about when a large tanker can enter or leave a harbor will depend on many factors including the depth of the channel, the draft of the tanker, and the height of the tide. Utilizing tide chart information, students will determine when the tanker will be able to safely leave. They will also record high and low tides on a grid. Each high tide will be connected to the next low tide and, from there, to the next low tide, and so on. The beginning and end of a safe period of time in which the tanker can set sail will be marked.
This activity will focus on density as students investigate the relationship between a ship's capacity and the type of cargo being transported. Exploration of the carrying capacity of ships for different materials will be investigated. Data on the mass and volume of the oil, sand, and water will be collected. Information will be plotted. By examining the slope of the line, students will demonstrate the characteristic of each material. The steeper the slope, the denser the material.
Internet Activity-Density Lab