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The Once and Future Corals

Ari Daniel Shapiro, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

This narrated slide show gives a brief overview of coral biology and how coral reefs are in danger from pollution, ocean temperature change, ocean acidification, and climate change. In addition, scientists discuss how taking cores from corals yields information on past changes in ocean temperature.

Slideshow length: 6:08 minutes.

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Climate Literacy
About Teaching Climate Literacy

Climate impacts ecosystems and past species extinctions
About Teaching Principle 3
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Evidence is that human impacts are playing an increasing role in climate change
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Increased acidity of oceans and negative impacts on food chain due to increasing carbon dioxide levels
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Ecosystems on land and in the ocean have been and will continue to be disturbed by climate change
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Notes From Our Reviewers The CLEAN collection is hand-picked and rigorously reviewed for scientific accuracy and classroom effectiveness. Read what our review team had to say about this resource below or learn more about how CLEAN reviews teaching materials
Teaching Tips | Science | Pedagogy | Technical Details

Teaching Tips

  • Because this is a brief overview of coral reefs in danger, eductor may want to provide the linked Oceanus articles to their students for more background information.

About the Science

  • An overview of how human activity is impacting the integrity of coral reefs, and how coral can be used to investigate past climate changes. Paleoclimatology, ocean acidification, ecology, and pollution are all linked topics.
  • Comments from expert scientist: This video is narrated by Konrad Hughen, a respected geochemist who works with coral skeletal records. The video has good visuals and the narration tells a nice story about what corals are, and how coral reefs grow and record information on ocean history in their skeletons.

About the Pedagogy

  • There are links to Oceanus articles that fill in more science background on this slideshow. Educator should review the links prior to lesson to prepare for student questions and desire to explore.

Technical Details/Ease of Use

  • Nice graphics. Narration very clear, appropriate level

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