Standard 4: The Physical Setting Indicator 4.3.4: Describe some of the effects of the oceans on climate. Indiana Department of Education’s Standard Website:http://dc.doe.in.gov/Standards/AcademicStandards/StandardSearch.aspx Link to Activity: http://www.indianastandardsresources.org/files/sci/sci_4_3_4.pdf
Definitions: Climate- A region with specified weather conditions. The average weather conditions of a particular place or region over a period of years. Region- A broad geographic area. Observation- An act of gathering information (as for scientific studies) by noting facts or occurrences. Resource: http://www.wordcentral.com/
Background Information The sun’s energy is the driving force behind the water cycle. The sun heats up water on land and in the oceans, lakes, and seas. The water changes from liquid to vapor in a process called evaporation. The water vapor cools and in a process called condensation forms droplets in the atmosphere. These droplets become clouds. The droplets (or ice crystals if it’s cold enough) gather and then fall from the sky in a process called precipitation. This precipitation falls on mountains, trees, and land, and then runs off or gathers in streams and rivers and flows and becomes run off again, flowing back down to the oceans, seas, and lakes. http://bogglesworldesl.com/watercycle_worksheets.htm
Background Information Cont. Evaporation: Evaporation is when the sun heats up water in rivers or lakes or the ocean and turns it into vapor or steam. The water vapor or steam leaves the river, lake or ocean and goes into the air. Condensation: Water vapor in the air gets cold and changes back into liquid, forming clouds. This is called condensation. Precipitation: Precipitation occurs when so much water has condensed that the air cannot hold it anymore. The clouds get heavy and water falls back to the earth in the form of rain, hail, sleet or snow. Source: http://www.kidzone.ws/WATER/
Materials Required: Two large clear jars- one plain and one with inch marks Masking Tape Scissors Rock Sand Water (Bottled water will be provided in the kit) Science Notebook Pencil Water Cycle Worksheet Colored Pencils **Heat lamp can be provided if students will not have access to a sunny window** (All items will be available in the Oceans and Climate Kit Provided by your USI instructor)
Things to think about before beginning: Based on the descriptions given in your background information, can you match the following pictures with the process they represent? Draw a line from the term to the picture that best shows each term. Evaporation Precipitation Condensation Source: http://www.kidzone.ws/WATER/
More Questions to Consider before Beginning: **You will be provided a Science Notebook. Please write your name, grade, and the day’s date at the top of the page. You will write your answers in complete sentences in this notebook.** In our model of the water cycle, we will include a rock on top of our sand. What purpose do you think this rock will have? Write your answer if the provided science notebook. What do you think will happen to the water in the sand? Why do you think this? Write your answer in your notebook. Before starting, feel the inside of both jars. Are they dry? What do you think will happen to the jars when your project is complete?
Activity Remove the two jars from your kit. Feel the inside of each jar. Are they both dry? Find the jar that has the marks on it. Pour water to the first mark (the ½ inch line). Very slowly, pour sand on top of the water. Continue pouring until the sand is level with the second mark (the 1 inch line). Place a rock (or two small rocks) on top of the sand. Tape together the two ends of the jar with the masking tape (see the diagram on the next page for this step. With adult supervision, plug in the heat lamp and clamp it to a desk or shelf. Place the jar near the lamp, but not touching it. Observe the jar several times during your given time and observe what happens. Record your observations in your provided science notebook. Source: http://www.indianastandardsresources.org/files/sci/sci_4_3_4.pdf
While you are waiting… Based on what you have learned, fill out the water cycle chart provided. If time permits, you may color the sheet.
Once your observations are complete, answer the following… You made a prediction about the rock in the jar and what purpose it would serve. Was this prediction correct? If not, what do you think the rock represented in our water cycle model? Write this answer if your science notebook. Now that the experiment is complete, feel the inside of both jars. Are they wet or dry now? Why do you think this is? Write this answer in your notebook. What happened to the sand in the jars? Was your prediction correct?
Post-Activity Questions Cont. What would you expect to have more rain: a desert or a forest? Why do you think this? Write your answer in your notebook. If these jars represented a water cycle on the earth, with the lamp being the sun and the jars being an ocean, what do you predict would happen if we moved the jars further from the lamp? Would you see more or less condensation and precipitation as you moved the jars? Explain. What other changes could you make to this experiment to change how much precipitation you saw in the jar? What would these changes represent if you consider how oceans affect the climate? Based on your observations and the reflections you have made with these answers, what effect do you believe that oceans have on climate?
Some Things to Remember… Our oceans help add moisture in the air that forms our water cycles. The closer you are to the oceans, the more rain you will have. When the water from the ocean is heated from the sun, it evaporates into the air, begins to form condensation known as clouds, who then form precipitation in the form of rain or snow. This falls to the ground, runs back to the ocean, and the cycle starts all over again. It is a never-ending process.
Congratulations! You have now completed the Water Cycle Experiment and should have a better understanding how oceans affect the climate around us.