The students are engaged in determining how maps can be used as tools to locate physical features of the ocean floor. They read the story Solving the Puzzle Under the Sea: Marie Tharp Maps the Ocean Floor, then discuss the specific features of an underwater map, continental drift theory and the importance of the work of geologist Marie Tharp. Students explore Tharp’s theory as they plot points on a Soundings Map worksheet to create their own profile coastline map. Teacher guided discussion and map sharing allows students to explain their map data points, as they analyze data, noting differences in plot points in regard to ocean depth. Use of a Color-Coded Depth Chart Scale and NOAA animations give students the opportunity to elaborate on more detailed birds-eye view images of the ocean floor, then evaluate their understanding of their own ocean floor models as they relate to Marie Tharps’ work.
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