Students will use marshmallows to simulate toxins in the environment. Concentrations of these toxins will be modeled and calculated as they bioaccumulate up the food chain. Methylmercury and POPs are substances that bioaccumulate in the Arctic food chain. OASIS scientists studied these in Barrow, Alaska. (See Ocean Atmosphere Sea Ice and Snow (OASIS) Project at www.polartrec.com)
Students will discover how a simple action such as turning on a television will lead to toxins in our food supply. Many of these toxins concentrate in the Arctic because of long-range transport of pollutants in the atmosphere. Scientists in the OASIS project (http://www.polartrec.com/ocean-atmosphere-sea-ice-and-snowpack-interact…) study these pollutants in the Arctic. Students will learn about actions that they can take to
The Kuril Biocomplexity Project is a National Science Foundation-funded research project led by the University of Washington and being conducted by a team of American, Japanese and Russian scholars and students who are examining a 5000-year history of human-environmental interactions along the Kuril Island chain in the northwest Pacific Ocean. This is the link to the project website.
This activity is designed to take place near or at the end of a unit on the ocean floor. Students should be familiar with the physical features of the ocean floor including the continental shelf, abyssal plain, seamounts and guyots, seafloor ridges and trenches, and submarine canyons. The students should have also previously learned about sonar methods for mapping the