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Hands-on Activities
Check out our Oceans CD-ROM which includes similar activities.
Sea Change
An activity you can use in the classroom

Background
Water heats up and cools down more slowly than air. Why? By volume water can hold more heat than air. In this activity, you will conduct an experiment to see different rates of change in water and air temperatures.

What You Need

  • 4 one-liter beakers (or quart jars)
  • 4 thermometers
  • graph paper
  • 4 colored pencils or ink pens
What To Do
  1. Fill two beakers to the same level with tap water. Leave the other two empty.
  2. Place a thermometer in each beaker.
  3. Place one water beaker and one empty beaker in the shade as controls. Place the second set of beakers in direct sunlight.
  4. At 10-minute intervals for the next two hours, record the temperature readings for all four thermometers on the attached worksheet.
  5. Complete the remaining portions of the worksheet.