Impacts of Topography on Sea Level Change

This lesson is comprised of three activities (three class periods). Students use web-based animations to explore the impacts of ice melt and changes to sea level. Students are introduced to topographic maps by doing a hands-on activity to model the contours of an island. Then students examine the relationship between topography and sea level rise by mapping changing shorelines using a topographic map.

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Lise Whitfield
Bill McMillon
Judy Scotchmoor
Phil Stoffer
DLESE (Digital Library for Earth System Education)

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Teaching Tips

Teaching Tips

Great extension activity in supplement lessons is the one on fresh water availability and how it will be affected by sea level rise and economic impact.

Educator should try to discuss the homework from "Activity 3: Mapping Shorelines" to ensure student consideration of the impacts of ice melt and sea level rise. A class discussion may suffice.

Activity 3 needs more explicit directions for the worksheet students fill out.

The second activity should include safety precautions for working with sharp instruments.