This lesson guides a student inquiry into properties of the ocean's carbonate buffer system, and how changes in atmospheric carbon dioxide levels may affect ocean pH and biological organisms that depend on calcification.

This teaching activity addresses environmental stresses on corals. Students assess coral bleaching using water temperature data from the NOAA National Data Buoy Center. Students learn about the habitat of corals, the stresses on coral populations, and the impact of increased sea surface temperatures on coral reefs. In a discussion section, the connection between coral bleaching and global warming is drawn.

This activity identifies and explains the benefits of and threats to coral reef systems. Students read tutorials, describe the role of satellites, analyze oceanographic data and identify actions that can be undertaken to reduce or eliminate threats to coral reefs. As a culminating activity, students prepare a public education program.

This 3-part interactive and virtual lab activity examines the life cycle of the sea urchin, and how the increasing acidity of the ocean affects their larval development.