Our Ocean Portal Educators’ Corner provides you with activities, lessons and educational resources to bring the ocean to life for your students. We have collected top resources from our collaborators to provide you with teacher-tested, ocean science materials for your classroom. We hope these resources, along with the rich experience of the Ocean Portal, will help you inspire the next generation of ocean stewards.
Featured Lesson Plans
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Find lessons/activities by topic, title or grade levels. Sort by newest or alphabetically. Lessons were developed by ocean science and education organizations like NOAA, COSEE, and NMEA to help you bring the ocean to your classroom.
Students will demonstrate the different methods used to clean up after an oil spill and gain an understanding of the difficulties that are encountered.
Students use a variety of materials to construct various models of plankton to gain an understanding of neutral buoyancy.
The goal of this activity is to get students thinking about oil in the ocean, and in particular about the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill and the challenging cleanup efforts. Each pair of students will have a water-filled tray to represent the Gulf of Mexico and a set of materials to respond to the simulated oil spill.
This activity is useful for a wide range of ages and works well in a camp or classroom setting. This challenge, including introduction, hands-on activity, and discussion, takes about 1 hour.
The Adventures of Zack and Molly is a new, four-part video series about an unlikely duo exploring the deep ocean produced by ECOGIG in collaboration with Sherman's Lagoon creator and filmmaker Jim Toomey.
The Learning Guide provides discussion points, connections to Next Generation Science Standards, hands-on activities, and further resources. Spanish version available here.
National Museum of Natural History
Join Ocean Portal Editor-in-Chief Emily Frost and museum educators from the National Museum of Natural History as they guide you through the Ocean Portal website, exploring a multitude of digital assets including vetted scientific information, interactive content, and education resources.
Moorea Coral Reef LTER Education
This lesson is created to stress the idea of interrelationships among organisms and how this can effect the surrounding environment. This lesson also goes step by step through the scientific approach to developing and implementing a scientific research study. Students are expected to write their own ideas about the best way to investigate the scientific questions provided, and compare their ideas to those of the actual researcher.
In this activity, students will be able to compare and contrast at least three different groups of organisms that are included in ‘gelatinous zooplankton’, describe how gelatinous zooplankton fit into marine food webs, and explain how inadequate information about an organism may lead to that organism being perceived as insignificant.
The Ocean and You
A kit you can create to help your students understand the impacts of the Gulf Of Mexico oil spill. Easily contained in a box so clean up is easy...as compared to oil spills in real life!
California Academy of Sciences
Students will learn via experimentation that ice formations on land will cause a rise in sea level when they melt, whereas ice formations on water will not cause a rise in sea level when they melt. Students will learn that ice is less dense than water and that ice displaces water equal to the mass of the ice.
Students will use and describe how a variety of objects provide metaphors for why climate change is occurring and the impacts resulting from it. Students will demonstrate the ability to interpret metaphors, describe the factors contributing to climate change and make connections between human behavior and environmental changes.