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Classroom Resources: Ocean

View of the oceans from NOAA Boulder

Boulder, Colorado is not near an ocean, but our scientists and data managers still study the ocean. Some of their focuses are marine heatwaves, bathymetry, and maintaining a global tsunami database. You will also see activities and information on this page from our NOAA friends across the country.

Kindergarten - 2nd Grade

3rd - 5th Grade

Middle School

High School/College

Next Generation Science Standards

Grade Level


NOAA Boulder Science


2-ESS1-1 Use information from several sources to provide evidence that Earth events can occur quickly or slowly.


2-ESS2-1 – Obtain information to identify where water is found on Earth and that it can be solid or liquid.

NOAA Boulder researchers monitor historic Arctic ice and model future ice.


4-ESS2-2 Analyze and interpret data from maps to describe patterns of Earth’s features.

NOAA Boulder data scientists analyze sonar data in order to make bathymetry maps of the ocean floor.


5-ESS2-1 – Develop a model using an example to describe ways the geosphere, biosphere, hydrosphere, and/or atmosphere interact.

NOAA Boulder researchers create weather and climate models, and work to improve their understanding in the interaction between all earth systems.

Middle School

MS-ESS3-5 Ask questions to clarify evidence of the factors that have caused the rise in global temperatures over the past century.

National NOAA Boulder scientists monitor changes in ocean temperatures around the world, and impacts to weather and climate.

High School

HS-ESS2-2 Analyze geoscience data to make the claim that one change to Earth’s surface can create feedbacks that cause changes to other Earth systems.


HS-LS2-5 Develop a quantitative model to describe the cycling of carbon among the hydrosphere, atmosphere, geosphere, and biosphere.


HS-ESS3-6 Use a computational representation to illustrate the relationships among Earth systems and how those relationships are being modified due to human activity.

NOAA Boulder scientists research influences between earth systems and feedback loops. For example, warm ocean temperatures lead to increased Arctic ice melting. Less ice cover leads to more warming of the ocean, increasing ice melt further.


NOAA NOAA Boulder researchers study carbon in different stages of the carbon cycle.


NOAA Boulder scientists model changes in Earth systems, taking into account different amounts of greenhouse gases.