Essentials of Oceanography

Lesson 9


Activity: Capstone Project

In this activity, you will design a lesson for an audience of your choosing based on one of the topics we covered in this course.


1.  By July 31 - Figure out approximately what you want to teach and email me a brief description of your plan and your audience. For example, you could just say "I'm going to design a lesson where high school students investigate ocean surface currents" or something like that.

2.  By August 4 - Write up your lesson plan. Your lesson plan should include the following:

  • A brief overview of what will be taught and why
  • A set of learning objectives (What will your students know or be able to do at the end of your lesson?)
  • A description of your plan (What will the students do?)
  • List of necessary materials
  • A list of deliverables (What will the students turn in? How will you know if they learned what you wanted them to learn?)
  • An evaluation rubric (so that another teacher could assess the students in the manner that you intended)
  • Save an electronic version of your activity as either a Microsoft Word or PDF file in the following format: L8_capstone_AccessAccountID_LastName.doc (or .pdf).

Submitting your work

Upload your capstone project file to the Lesson 9 dropbox in Canvas.

Note on Grading:

I am interested in the scientific accuracy of the topic you choose to teach. I am not going to base my grade on whether you have constructed a lesson plan in some special way (as long as all the components listed above are there). My assumption is that for those of you who are teachers, you don't need me to tell you how to write a lesson plan because you already know. For those of you who are not teachers, I am not the one who is going to instruct you on correct lesson plan-making. However, I am a scientist and an educator, so if facts are not right, or could use clarification, I can assist with that.

Grading rubric

An "A" capstone project is complete, clear, and organized. It contains all the components listed above. The science is accurate. I can follow your instructions and get the results you expected me to get. The questions you made up are well-designed and would elicit the appropriate amount of thinking and interpretation on the part of the intended audience. Your project shows independent thinking.

A "B" capstone project is like that of an "A" project, except that its directions may not be clear enough that I can follow them without having to guess a little bit about your exact intentions. A "B" write-up is complete and contains all the components listed above.

A "C" capstone project may have clarity problems, leading me to have to guess how to follow your instructions. A "C" write-up may also be incomplete with some of the assignment components missing. The science may not be accurate.

A "D" capstone project has such badly written directions that I can't even begin to guess how to follow your instructions. A "D" write-up may be significantly incomplete and it may contain gross factual errors.