Investigating El Niño: Teacher Resources
Interested in engaging your students with real-time NOAA data? In this module, designed for 6-12th grade classrooms, students evaluate changes in sea surface temperature over space and time and investigate how El Niño affects phytoplankton & species distribution in the eastern Pacific Ocean. There are many ways to integrate some or all of the lessons in this module into your course. One example, aimed at middle school teachers, is provided below.
The digital module offers lessons at five different levels, beginning with basic graph interpretation (Levels 1 & 2) and building towards activities that challenge students to ask questions and develop their own data investigations (Levels 4 & 5). Student worksheets complement each of the five lessons.
- Teacher Guide: Investigating El Niño
- Level 1: There is no worksheet for Level 1
- Level 2: Student worksheet
- Level 3: Student worksheet
- Level 4: Student worksheet
- Level 5: Student worksheet
Online data visualizations and user-friendly tools for accessing and exploring NOAA data are integrated throughout each of the five levels. Through this module, students can access graphs and data maps from two NOAA datasets - sea surface temperature and chlorophyll concentrations. Need help using the data tools? Contact us for assistance.
The activities in this module can be incorporated into an existing curriculum or unit of study to support the three dimensional learning (principles, core ideas, and concepts) introduced in the K-12 Framework for Science Education.