Curriculum Filter Results

How Long Does it take Water to Flow Through the Great Lakes Basin?

Water that is in a lake does not stay in that lake. Where does the water go? The length of time that it takes for the amount of water in a lake to be completely replaced (enter the lake) is called retention time. Each of the Great Lakes has a different retention time. Construct an appropriate model of the water flow of the Great Lakes learn about retention time and replacement time, and how how Lake Superior affects the dynamics of water flow, retention time and flushing rates for the Great Lakes system.

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How Does Water Move in the Great Lakes Basin?

You are familiar with the water cycle. The sun heats the surface of the earth, water evaporates, water vapor rises in the atmosphere cools and condenses, precipitation falls and then water flows in the streams, rivers, lakes and oceans. In this activity you will find out how water moves in the Great Lakes  system.

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When you complete this activity you will be able to:

  • Locate and identify the Great Lakes on a map.
  • Identify the connecting waters.
  • Define water basin.
  • Begin an analysis of the flow of water.

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How Does Stratification Affect Water Quality?

Some lakes have water quality problems related to the layering of the lake’s waters, which occurs in the summer months. During the summer, the warm surface layer of water does not mix with the colder bottom layer of water. If a lot of algae has grown in the lake, decay of the dead algae on the lake bottom may use up all of the oxygen in the cold bottom water layer. In the fall, the surface water cools and mixes with the bottom water, resupplying the bottom water with oxygen needed for life. Learn how stratification of lake waters influences water quality and phosphorus affects oxygen levels in lakes.

Objectives

When you complete the activity you will be able to:

  • Describe how stratification of lake waters influences water quality.
  • Explain how phosphorus affects oxygen levels in lakes.

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How Well Do You Know the Great Lakes?

Many people, including a large portion of those who live close to the Great Lakes, do not a have a basic understanding of the individual characteristics of and the differences between the lakes. Since it is difficult to understand many of the Great Lakes issues, such as global climate change, pollution, and water use without a basic understanding of the lakes, this activity is designed to help visualize the differences in volume, shoreline length, human population distribution, and fish populations of the Great Lakes.

After completing this activity, students will be able to:
  • Compare and contrast the differences between the Great Lakes in water volumes, length of shoreline, human population distribution, and the amount of fish harvested from each lake.

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The Incredible Shrinking Cup Lab

Learn how students can develop hypotheses to test the effects of depth and pressure on the volume of Styrofoam cups by deploying the cups off the US EPA’s R/V Lake Guardian in Lake Superior. A great lesson showing the integration of Boyle’s Law and ocean physics.

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Great Lakes Geology and the Necessity of Locks

These lesson plans are intended to integrate an understanding of the geologic processes that resulted in the formation of the Great Lakeswith lock technology that was developed to optimize the Great Lakes as a transportation waterway. The primary focus of the unit is to address technology as defined by the DOE as, ” The innovation, change, or modification of the natural environment to satisfy perceived human needs and wants.”

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Where Should I Relocate in the Great Lakes Region?

This activity will allow students to describe the Great Lakes region using a map and identify some of the resources the region has to offer. Also, by using maps and graphs students can demonstrate how they can provide information for decision making. Students will describe a decision making process by which people can evaluate a geographic area as a possible home site.

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Where Do All the Toxins Go? (Internal View)

When students have completed this activity, they will be able to demonstrate how chemicals accumulate in fish fat, the biopathways of the toxins in the fish’s body, and ways to prepare fish to avoid consuming the toxins.

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Trees on the Move

This activity set helps students examine the climate niches of the sugar maple Acer saccharum and the Ohio buckeye Aesculus glabra, and see how some global climate models predict those niches are likely to change. We will observe examples of how plants migrate, and predict some possible impacts on the North American economy and culture as maple and buckeye ranges shift. Finally, examination of research on tree seed germination offers insight on one way temperature affects trees.

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