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 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
Science Objects are two hour learning experiences teachers can use to enhance their understanding of a particular scientific concept. Teachers can access any topic “on demand” from the Internet. Topics are based on the science literacy goals in the national standards (NSES, Science for All Americans, Benchmarks, and the Atlas of Scientific Literacy) and tied to state standards.
Each Science Object provides an understanding of the science content by providing a structured set of learning experiences through simulations and practice assessments. Science Objects challenge teachers to explore and explain real world phenomena and are founded on the principle that learners must be challenged with a problem, observation, data, etc., in order to develop scientific understanding. Science Objects utilize the five phases of inquiry-based learning: Engage, Explore, Explain, Elaborate, and Evaluate.
Oceans Effect on Weather and Climate: Global Climate Patterns
- Explain why the temperature of the ocean does not generally fluctuate as dramatically as the temperature of the land.
- Describe the relationship between density of liquids and gases and their temperature.
- Explain how a difference in density of different layers/portions of a fluid will cause internal currents (rising and falling of the fluid).
- Explain the cause of predictable wind patterns along the coastal regions of large land masses.
- Describe how the Coriolis Effect helps determine the direction of movement of air and water currents.
- List the major variables that affect the transfer of energy through the atmosphere.
- Provide an example showing how the transfer of energy affects weather and climate.
- Explain how convection relates to weather, including its role in the development of circulation patterns.
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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:||application/x-shockwave-flash, audio/mp3, image/gif, image/jpeg, text/html, video/quicktime
|Installation Remarks:||Run the Science Objects System Check to ensure that your system is capable of viewing the simulations: http://ecommerce2.nsta.org/system_check/
|Requirements:||Requires Macromedia Flash Player and Apple Quicktime Player
State Standards Correlation
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