Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Ocean Currents and Europe

Today we will examine the impact of ocean currents on the lives of Europeans and other people around the world. In order to do this, we will use resources provided by the U.S. National Ocean Service.

You will complete all of today's work on a piece of loose leaf paper. Title the assignment "Ocean Currents and Europe."

While you work, keep your notes from last night on your desk. You will need them to complete today's assignment. I will also walk around and grade them during this class period.

Label each section on your piece of loose leaf paper exactly as I have it labeled on this blog post.

Answer in complete sentences -- that means you must re-state the question.

Answer in your own words -- that means you CANNOT simply copy down exactly what is written on the website/in your book.

Part I: Background
  1. Look back to your notes on Chapter 12.2. In what ways do winds affect Europe? Give at least 3 specific examples.
  2. Now you will start looking at the Internet resources we will use today. First, examine the "About" page for the National Ocean Service. Use it to answer the following:
    1. What is the National Ocean Service?
    2. What are its goals?
    3. What is its mission?
Part II: Currents Introduction
  1. Look in your notes or on p. 278 of your book. What current is important to Europe's climate?
  2. Now, examine the NOS site about currents. What is a current? What are two different examples of currents you might be familiar with?
  3. What three factors drive ocean currents? You can either use the information written on the page or listen to the first 5 minutes of this NOS podcast.
Part III: Surface Ocean Currents
We will focus on surface ocean currents today. Use this page from the NOS to answer the following:
  1. What is the difference between coastal currents and surface ocean currents?
  2. What is the Coriolis Effect? How does it affect the circulation of air across the planet?
  3. What are Trade Winds? Why are they called this? How could these winds affect the weather in Europe and other places in the world?
  4. Click on the tab marked Boundary Currents. What is a gyre? What causes gyres to form?
  5. According to the caption below the central image, what flanks each gyre?
  6. What powerful boundary current affects Europe? Record its two names, then explain its impact.
Part IV: Synthesis
Use the information you've learned today, the map below, and the political maps in your textbook's Atlas, answer the questions that follow.

  1. Which location would you expect to have a warmer average temperature: Minneapolis, Minnesota or London, England? Explain.
  2. Which location would you expect to have a warmer average temperature: Chicago, Illinois or Rome, Italy? Explain.
  3. Think back to our discussion of the Columbian Exchange. Using the information you learned in class today, explain why the Columbian Exchange moved in the direction it did, and not the other way.
Back to the Columbian Exchange
The Columbian Exchange, as we learned, did not only affect the United States. It affected all of the continents involved -- Africa, Europe, and North America.

The European country most associated with the slave trade in the United States is Great Britain. In this document, titled Five Readings about the Columbian Exchange, you will hear from an enslaved individual, an accountant, and a slave ship captain. Use the readings to complete the following.
  1. What can we learn about the slave trade from Equiano's account?
  2. What can we learn about it from the Captain Roberts' balance sheet?
  3. What can we learn from Captain Newton's diary?
  4. What effects did the Columbian Exchange have on the three men in these documents?

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