Chapter 13: The Ocean’s In Crisis


The world’s ocean’s are in crisis.  We have addressed this topic all year.  Now its your turn to research, write, create, and explain one of the issues facing the world’s oceans today.


  1. Select a topic and research what’s involved.  Keep assets (images, ideas, quotes, information.)  Keep sources.  You will be required to submit an annotated bibliography along with the project.  You must have at least five sources.
  2. Brainstorm a way to express, present, or teach your idea to your classmates.  Discuss your idea with your teacher.
  3. Select a product that you will create from the list below.
  4. Build an annotated bibliography.  In an annotated bibliography, you cite the source (use MLA format in Easy Bib,) and then add a statement about what information or inspiration you got from that site.  The statement should be three to five sentences for each source.
  5. Get to work, and be ready to present your product on May 18th.

Topics to Choose From

  • ocean acidification
  • the effects of introduced species on marine estuaries
  • Decline of Western Alaska Steller Sea Lions, Steller Watch
  • global warming and the loss of sea ice habitat for ice breeding seals or polar bears
  • declines in Alaska king salmon abundance
  • over fishing in the Gulf of California
  • whale entanglements in fishing gear
  • whale stranding associated with sonar use
  • ghost fishing (lost fishing gear that keeps on killing fishing)
  • the loss of ocean predators (sharks and large bill fish)
  • coral Bleaching
  • loss of coral reef habitat due to coral reef bleaching
  • loss of estuary or mangrove habitat to development or shrimp farming
  • the possible extinction of a particular species such as the vaquita, the right whale, or bluefin tuna
  • dead zones (oxygen depletion due to excess nutrient input)
  • plastic pollution as a problem in general, or specifically for birds, turtles, or fish
  • sea star wasting disease
  • toxins accumulating in the ocean and marine organisms (mercury, DDT, PCB’s, etc)
  • oil spills and their effects in general, or specifically on birds or marine mammals
  • decommissioning off shore oil wells
  • controversies over new off shore oil wells
  • the effect of introduced species such as the Chinese mitten crab
  • there are others and perhaps you have your own ideas

Products to Choose From

  • Write: a research paper, a news article, or a story
  • Create: a sculpture, a painting, a digital canvass, a movie, a collage, a performance, a prezi, a mosaic, a mural, or a pod cast
  • Design: an infographic, a webpage, or an experiment


 Goal Points possible  Self Assessment Teacher Assessment
1.  The product demonstrates quality research, provides scientifically accurate information, and provides a hopeful solution to one issue facing the ocean’s in crisis. 20
2. The product effectively; conveys meaning, makes an argument, and/or educates your classmates. 20
3. The product has aesthetic integrity.  If written; the written text conveys complex ideas, concepts, and information clearly and accurately through the effective selection, organization, and analysis of content.  If created; the images, lines, colors, shapes, space and contrast work in unison and increase the effectiveness of the message.  If designed; the layout guides the viewer through the issue and makes the information presented easy to understand and meaningful. 20
4. The student(s) effectively present their material, telling a compelling story of how the ocean’s are in crisis.  20
5. The annotated bibliography lists at least five sources in mla format and gives a three to five sentences description of what information or inspiration was acquired from that source.  10
6. Topic selected on time, rough draft and bibliography submitted on time. 10
Totals 100