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Learn more about Ocearch at www.ocearch.com 

"Last year I contacted the Chris Fischer of the OCEARCH crew through Twitter while they were in Jacksonville tagging and researching Great White Sharks.  I was able to put together a skype session between Chris Fischer (leader of the organization) and my students after completing a brief activity tracking some of the sharks their group tagged off the coast of South Africa.

     This year I increased the scope of the lesson to be continuous throughout the year.  At the start of the year students got into groups of 4 and each choose 2 sharks, 1 male and 1 female.  Each month the groups would get back together and track the movements of the sharks utilizing the Shark Tracking feature on the website  www.ocearch.org  Students then used different color markers (based on sexual maturity and gender of the shark) to track the movement of their shark over the previous month.  Periodically we overlay the maps ontop of each other and discuss as a class the movements of all the sharks and any potential interactions/reasons for movements of the population being tracked.  The goal of this activity is for students to try and identify potential breeding and nursery grounds for great white sharks.  Once they have determined those students will create an action plan of what they believe should be done to protect those areas and the White Shark population.

     We just had our first skype session of the year with Mr. Fischer and it served as a way for students to get many initial questions about the OCEARCH organization and their research answered.  Towards the end of the school year we will be having another skype session where the students will present their findings to Mr. Fischer and discuss how what they have found relates to the information OCEARCH and its scientists has found.

     The overall goal of this activity is to increase awareness in the students as to the importance the ocean plays in our lives and how 1 organism going extinct can greatly alter the ecosystem as a whole." 

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