Examining Sea Level Rise and Differential Shoreline Response

In this activity, students make and manipulate physical shoreline models to discover the features of resilient shorelines and to critically evaluate the impacts of rising seas. Students will use NOAA's Sea Level Rise Viewer to observe a coastal area of interest and predict the consequences of sea level rise on people, the environment, and the economy. Though the curriculum references North Carolina, this lesson will work for all coastal areas.

Go To:

Dana Haine
Jana Tasich
Joe Moss
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

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Teaching Tips

Teaching Tips

Teachers will note some set up and clean up time will be involved. Space and adequate materials will be needed for student groups and dry materials will be needed for each period.

Ensuring time is carved out for students to research/learn about different types of shorelines before or at the beginning of this activity will be key in student's understandings of application to the real world.

Extension activities are excellent, and encourage application of what students have learned.

Note that the Sea Level Rise Viewer does not currently contain data for Alaska, and if interested in exploring the Great Lakes: [link coast.noaa.gov/llv 'use the Lake Level Viewer']