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## Earth System Topics: Oceans

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# Resource Type: Activities

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Observing Salinity Patterns
Stephanie Jaeger, Green River Community College
Part 1: Students measure the salinity of samples using a refractometer, and consider the units and density of these values. Part 2: Students apply concepts and reinforce what they've learned about salinity and ...

Estimating Exchange Rates of Water in Embayments using Simple Budget Equations.
Keith Sverdrup, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
Simple budgets may be used to estimate the exchange of water in embayments that capitalize on the concept of steady state and conservation principals. This is especially true for bays that experience a significant exchange of freshwater. This exchange of freshwater may reduce the average salt concentration in the bay compared to seawater if it involves addition of freshwater from rivers, R, and/or precipitation, P. Alternatively, it may increase the average salt concentration in the bay compared to seawater if there is relatively little river input and high evaporation, E. Since freshwater input changes the salt concentration in the bay, and salt is a conservative material, it is possible to combine two steady state budgets for a bay, one for salt and one for water, to solve for the magnitude of the water flows that enter and exit the bay mouth. Students will make actual calculations for the inflow and outflow of water to Puget Sound, Washington and the Mediterranean Sea and compare them to actual measured values.

Seasonal variation in light, mixing depth and primary productivity in temperate northern hemisphere waters
In this exercise students work with light, temperature, and phytoplankton biomass proxy (chlorophyll a concentration) data to; Become more skilled in reading and interpreting semi log graphs, temperature profiles, ...

Getting a Grip on Hydrogen Bonds
The purpose of this brief (~15 minutes) activity is for students to directly observe some of the unique properties of water that are the result of hydrogen bonds, such as capillary action, adhesion, cohesion, and ...

Temperature/Salinity/Density activity
Petra Dekens, San Francisco State University
This is an in-class activity designed to improve the students' understanding of the relationships between temperature and density, salinity and density, and density differences in driving vertical water ...

Seawater composition: an introduction
In this activity, students collaboratively "build" the hydrologic cycle and use it as a starting point for thinking about the composition of seawater.

Deep water circulation and chemistry jigsaw
Michele LaVigne, Bowdoin College
This activity is designed to introduce students to the way in which thermohaline circulation and the biological pump influence the distribution of nutrients, oxygen, carbon, and radiocarbon in the Atlantic vs. ...

Changing With the Tide
Rebecca Teed, Wright State University-Main Campus
This lesson plan is written around a brief role-play in which students learn about and act out plants and animals in a salt marsh habitat as the tides change. -

Water Quality-Total Dissolved Solids
Bob Mackay, Clark College
Students use a microcomputer connected to a conductivity probe to measure the total dissolved solids in local area water samples. -

ConcepTest: Drivers of Ocean Salinity Variations
Imagine ocean circulation stopped suddenly, with half of the world's salts in the northern hemisphere and half in the southern hemisphere. Assuming no net difference between evaporation and precipitation ...