Coral Bleaching: A White Hot Problem

Type of Resource



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.

Performance Expectations

HS-ESS3-5   Analyze geoscience data and the results from global climate models to make an evidence-based forecast of the current rate of global or regional climate change and associated future impacts to Earth systems.

MS-LS2-4   Construct an argument supported by empirical evidence that changes to physical or biological components of an ecosystem affect populations.

Science and Engineering Practices