Resource Detail: Science Object

Resource Image Ocean's Effect on Weather and Climate: Global Climate Patterns
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Type of Resource: Science Object
Average Rating: Rating
 based on 12 reviews
Publication Title: None
Grade Level: Elementary School, Middle School


Science Objects are two hour on-line interactive inquiry-based content modules that help teachers better understand the science content they teach. This Science Object, co-developed between NOAA and NSTA, is the first of four Science Objects in the Ocean’s Effect on Weather and Climate SciPack. It explores global weather and climate patterns, focusing on why different conditions exist in specific areas. Earth’s weather patterns, which consist of different conditions of temperature, precipitation, humidity, wind, air pressure, and other atmospheric phenomena, result in various climate zones across the globe. Weather and climate are the result of the transfer of energy from the Sun at and near the surface of Earth. Solar radiation heats land masses, oceans, and air differently, resulting in the constant transfer of energy as energy is “balanced” across the globe. Transfer of thermal energy at the boundaries between the atmosphere, land masses, and the oceans—influenced by dynamic processes such as cloud cover and relatively static conditions such as the position of mountain ranges and oceans—results in layers of different temperatures and densities in both the ocean and atmosphere. The action of gravitational force on regions of different densities causes them to rise or fall, forming convection currents (cells). This circulation, influenced by the rotation of the earth, produces winds and ocean currents.

Ideas For Use


Coral Reef Ecosystems
Posted in Life Science by Kendra Young on Tue Jul 03, 2012 10:08 AM

I see Ronaldo has already shared his experience about the Coral Reef SciPack - thanks, Ronaldo! Did you also know you...
Lesson Plans on Weather
Posted in Earth and Space Science by Carolyn Mohr on Wed Feb 01, 2012 9:55 PM

Hi William! Welcome to the Learning Center discussion threads! Another idea for weather-related lessons is to integrate...

Additional Info

Science Discipline: (mouse over for full classification)
Global climate change
Intended User Role:Elementary-Level Educator, Middle-Level Educator, Teacher
Educational Issues:Inquiry learning, Professional development, Teacher content knowledge, Teaching strategies


Resource Format:
Size: KB
Installation Remarks:

National Standards Correlation

This resource has 3 correlations with the National Standards.  

This resource has 3 correlations with the National Standards.  

  • Earth Science
    • Changes in earth and sky
      • The surface of the earth changes.
      • Weather changes from day to day and over the seasons.
      • Weather can be described by measurable quantities, such as temperature, wind direction and speed, and precipitation.

State Standards Correlation

Use the form below to view which of your state standards this resource addresses.

User Reviews

I Wonder, Weather...
  Duane Little (Washington, DC) on December 16, 2011
  This Science Object is a great resource for teachers, not only to help educate their students about weather and climate, but also to speak intelligently about critical issues like climate change and the possible effects it may have on weather. The NSTA resources I now have access to continue to amaze me!

  Jessica on December 31, 2011
  This was easy to read and understand. I really appreciate the interactives and visuals, they added a better understanding to the lesson, especially for a visual learner.

The Oceans Have It!
  Lorrie Armfield (Laurel, MD) on December 27, 2011
  Oceans cover 70% of the Earth's surface and as such, they play a critical role in climate change. This resource does an amazing job describing short and long term climate changes caused/forced by oceans and atmospheric conditions. From warm fronts to humidity to precipitation, this science object does a great job describing the role our oceans play in the transfer of energy around the globe. The animations are great and work synergistically with the text to help viewers analyze global climate patterns.

Excellent Resource
  Robert Gilmore (Milford, MA) on September 6, 2010
  Once I allowed “pop ups” from NSTA on my computer, I had no problem accessing this resource. I liked having the option to read the material myself and/or have the material read to me by the online narrator. I appreciated the “check your thinking” and the “questions to check understanding” buttons that were spread throughout the resource. I liked the way the information was “chunked” into well-organized and intuitive sections. The inclusion of “common student misconceptions” and “hands-on activities” sidebars made the resource directly applicable to my middle school science classroom, which I appreciated. I liked the high-quality production value that went into the design of figures, animation, and particularly the interactive support features. Although I did not make use of the feature, I was comforted to know that email help from a Science Content Mentor was just an “Ask the Mentor” click away. I also welcomed the supplemental resources such as the companion Sci-Guide and the online glossary of all highlighted vocabulary. I found the resource to be highly engaging and was surprised at how quickly the time passed. I highly recommend this resource.

  James Johnson (Custer City, PA) on October 27, 2012
  I thought the content matter connecting the physical oceanography and the atmospheric science was outstanding. This resource is a must for the teacher at the middle school level, especially!

I was challenged...
  Stacey on April 3, 2013
  Great review of solar energy's effect on the water cycle.

I Love Science Objects!
  Naomi Beverly (Marietta, GA) on September 3, 2014
  I really enjoy Science Objects. In 1-3 hours, the Ocean's Effect on Weather and Climate: Global Climate Patterns Science Object will help me re-learn, refresh, or learn for the first time some critical science concepts I will have to know to obtain my Science Educator credentials. I appreciate that I can complete them at my own pace, and that, if used as park of a SciPack, I have access to a content expert to go to for help. The NSTA Learning Center Science Objects are very beneficial! Not only will they enrich my teaching, the knowledge will enrich my life.

Global Climate depends on energy
  Jennifer Rahn (Delafield, WI) on November 11, 2010
  This resource examines the role the oceans and atmosphere play in creating the Earth's climate. This depends on a transfer of solar energy to the Earth's surface, including the ocean; climate and daily weather are based on solar energy radiating and distributed on Earth. Liberal use of sims and built on physical science concepts. Well-organized.

Great Visuals
  Jessica on January 2, 2012
  I found the information to be very informative. The visuals and interactives were great.

Weather and Climate
  Janet Drueschler on August 6, 2013
  This is a great resource to explain the difference between weather and climate.

  Tammy Smith on June 11, 2015
  Will continue to review with greater interest.

Check the Weather
  Duane Little (Washington, DC) on December 16, 2011
  I read Robert's review (which is totally on point). However, I was reminded that in my experiences the "CHECK YOUR READING" pop-ups do not reveall all of the information on the page; can anyone tell me how this can be corrected?