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Exploring salinity patterns is a great way to better understand the relationships between the water cycle, ocean circulation, and climate. Explore sea surface salinity mapped plots created from the Earth System Data Explorer, paired with questions (and answers) from the Aquarius Mission. Credit: Aquarius Education

In this activity, students make a claim about the cause of ocean currents and then develop a model to explain the role of temperature and density in deep ocean currents.  This lesson is modified from "Visit to an Ocean Planet" Caltech and NASA/Jet Propulsion Laboratory.

Students observe images of daily average sea surface temperatures taken during 2017, as they analyze the plots for evidence of changes that are occurring throughout the year.


facet arrow Supported NGSS Performance Expectations

facet arrow Supported Common Core Math