Classroom lessons and learning tools relevant to the expedition are listed below by grade level. Although some of these resources may have been developed for past expeditions conducted in other regions of the world ocean, the Focus Questions and Student Learning Objectives are applicable to the current expedition.
Grade Level: 5-6
Focus: Structural complexity in coral reef communities (Life Science/Mathematics)
Students describe the importance of structural features that increase surface area in coral reef habitats; quantify the relative impact of various structural modifications on surface area in model habitats; and give examples of organisms that increase the structural complexity of their communities.
Grade Level: 7-8
Focus: Characteristics of biological communities on deep-water reef habitats (Life Science)
Students recognize and identify some of the fauna groups found in deep-sea coral reef communities; infer possible reasons for observed distribution of groups of animals in deep-sea coral reef communities; discuss the meaning of “biological diversity”; and compare and contrast the concepts of “variety” and “relative abundance” as they relate to biological diversity. Given abundance and distribution data of species, students calculate an appropriate numeric indicator that describes the biological diversity of a community.
Grade Level: 9-12
Focus: Marine Protected Areas (Life Sciences)
Students analyze threats to coral ecosystems, and specify qualitative and quantitative criteria and constraints for marine protected areas that account for perceived tradeoffs between conservation and fishery goals. Students also discuss evidence that demonstrates how marine protected areas can enhance use as well as protection of marine resources.
Grade Level: 9-12
Focus: Biology and ecology of Lophelia corals (Life Science)
Students describe the basic morphology of Lophelia corals and explain the significance of these organisms; interpret preliminary observations on behavior of Lophelia polyps, and infer possible explanations for these observations; and explain why biological communities associated with Lophelia corals are the focus of major worldwide conservation efforts.