Gulf of Mexico 2012

OE Education

This expedition education module focuses on the Okeanos Explorer's Gulf of Mexico Expedition 2012.

Gulf of Mexico 2012 Expedition: Expedition Education Module

Diamond Icon Expedition Purpose

Diamond Icon Lesson Plans and Supplemental Datasheets

Diamond Icon Okeanos Explorer Education Materials Collection

Diamond Icon Lessons from the Deep: Exploring the Gulf of Mexico's Deep-Sea Ecosystems Education Materials Collection

Diamond Icon Watch LIVE

Diamond Icon Okeanos Explorer Atlas

Diamond Icon Multimedia Discovery Missions

Diamond Icon OceanAGE Career Connections

Diamond Icon Other Resources and Links

Diamond Icon Contact

As "America’s Ship for Ocean Exploration," the NOAA Ship Okeanos Explorer’s sole assignment is to systematically explore Earth’s largely unknown ocean. A major task for this mission is to reach out to teachers, students, and the general public so that they may become engaged with expeditions dedicated to purposes of discovery and the advancement of knowledge. Okeanos Explorer Expedition Education Modules (EEM) are designed to help accomplish this task. The Gulf of Mexico 2012 Expedition offers a unique opportunity for explorers of all ages to investigate the unknown and poorly-known deep-sea ecosystems of the northern Gulf of Mexico.

This EEM contains the following components:

Expedition Purpose
A summary of the reasons for this Okeanos Explorer expedition, and what we might learn from our efforts to further understand the 95% of Earth’s ocean that is unexplored.


Lesson Plans and Supplemental Datasheets
Lesson plans for students in Grades 5-12 have been specifically designed for this expedition and have been correlated to:

Diamond Icon A Framework for K-12 Science Education External Link (in preparation for the Next Generation Science Standards External Link);

Diamond Icon Ocean Literacy Essential Principles and Fundamental Concepts External Link; and

Diamond Icon Common Core State Standards External Link for English Language Arts and Mathematics where appropriate.

You will also find links to other lesson plans residing on the Ocean Explorer website that have been developed for previous NOAA expeditions and have content that relates to the Gulf of Mexico 2012 Expedition. Supplemental Datasheets for selected lessons provide data that can be analyzed using the same techniques developed in the lesson to reveal additional information or discoveries.


Okeanos Explorer Education Materials Collection
A collection of lesson plans and other resources developed to encourage educators and students to become personally involved with the voyages and discoveries of the Okeanos Explorer— America’s first Federal ship dedicated to ocean exploration. The Education Materials Collection is currently presented in two volumes: Volume 1: Why Do We Explore? (reasons for ocean exploration), and Volume 2: How Do We Explore? (exploration methods).


Lessons from the Deep: Exploring the Gulf of Mexico's Deep-Sea Ecosystems Education Materials Collection
Includes 16 lesson plans about deep-sea organisms and ecosystems in the Gulf of Mexico. Lessons include selections from education materials developed for eleven expeditions sponsored by NOAA’s Office of Exploration and Research, as well as new lessons and additional background information about the Deepwater Horizon blowout event.


Watch LIVE
Live video feeds are provided from the NOAA Ship Okeanos Explorer as it explores sites of interest during the Okeanos Explorer 2012 Expeditions. The feeds include ROV video from the seafloor, audio narration by scientists on and off the ship, real-time sonar, and navigation displays that assist the scientists in their work.


Okeanos Explorer Atlas
A map-based display of the navigational track and data collected during ocean exploration expeditions conducted aboard the NOAA Ship Okeanos Explorer. The Atlas provides a picture of where data were collected, and of the kinds of activities necessary to collect those data. Information may be posted from the ship to the map almost as soon as it is collected, unless additional processing is needed before the data can be understood. Additional information about the area being explored can be selected for through a list of available data layers.


Multimedia Discovery Missions
Click on the links to Lessons 3, 5, 6, and 12 for interactive multimedia presentations and Learning Activities on Deep-Sea Corals, Chemosynthesis and Hydrothermal Vent Life, Deep-Sea Benthos, and Food, Water, and Medicine from the Sea.


OceanAGE Ocean Career Connections
To see archived video and online Web chats between students and scientists highlighting some of the careers that will be represented during this expedition, click on the links below.
Diamond Icon Deep-sea Biologist
Diamond Icon Marine Ecologist
Diamond Icon Associate Scientist
Diamond Icon Marine Taxonomist


Other Resources and Links
A list of other resources and links related to this expedition for you to explore.

For More Information Contact:

Paula Keener
Director, Education Programs
NOAA Office of Ocean Exploration and Research

Other lesson plans developed for this website are available in the Education Section.

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