Stranded Along the Coast
Reflections on the Sea
After centuries of seafaring, we're only now beginning to plumb the workings
of our watery planet. The deeper we go, the clearer it becomes that no matter
who we are or where we live, we all have a hand and a stake in what happens
in the seas.
The Smithsonian Institution created the exhibition Ocean
Planet to share with the public what recent research has revealed about
the oceans and to encourage ocean conservation. This online
booklet of lessons and activities adapts several themes of the exhibition
for use in the middle and high school classroom.
Ocean Planet has six lesson plans. "Sea Secrets" explores ocean
geography; "Sea Connections" looks at the plants and animals that
live in different marine ecosystems. "Ocean Market" identifies
and values many products of the seas. "Pollution Solution" examines
the effects of an environmental crisis. "Stranded Along the Coast"
explores both natural and human causes of animal strandings. Finally, "Reflections
on the Sea" explores the influence of oceans on language and literature.
Each of the the six lesson plans has the same elements: background information;
statement of learning objectives; list of required materials; step-by-step
procedures; student handouts (in Adobe
Acrobat format); and a list of additional resources, including connections
to the online version of the Ocean
The instructional approaches in Ocean Planet are interdisciplinary. Lesson
plans will work in different classes, from biology and mathematics to geography
and social studies. Many activities employ students' writing skills.
We hope that the lessons in this online booklet may guide students to better
understand the diversity and importance of the seas.