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Dauphin Island Sea Lab Field Trip

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Phillip Cosper, NBCT Science

Kim Knight, NBCT Business/Marketing


Childersburg Middle School, 

Talladega County Schools


This podcast gives a brief overview of our field trip to the Dauphin Island Sea Lab.  This incredible weekend excursion provided 35 8th grade science club students a chance to explore a barrier island, view marine life hands-on, and study ecological and evironmental elements of the Gulf of Mexico.  The students participated in several activities such as trip to the local estuarium, a boat trip on the sea lab research vessel, a salt marsh trip, shark dissection, and a plankton study.  The students learned a tremendous amount about the Gulf of Mexico and Dauphin Island.  The trip was amazing and the students still talk about it today!

Length: 4:17

Content Areas: Science

Alabama Course of Study Alignments and/or Professional Development Standard Alignments:

SC (7)
1. Describe characteristics common to living things, including growth and development, reproduction, cellular organization, use of energy, exchange of gases, and response to the environment.
  • Identifying homeostasis as the process by which an organism responds to its internal or external environment
  • Predicting how an organism's behavior impacts the environment
  • Identifying unicellular organisms, including bacteria and protists, by their methods of locomotion, reproduction, ingestion, excretion, and effects on other organisms
  • Identifying the structure of a virus
    SC (7)
    2. Identify functions of organelles found in eukaryotic cells, including the nucleus, cell membrane, cell wall, mitochondria, chloroplasts, and vacuoles.
    Example: mitochondria releasing energy for use in cellular respiration
  • Identifying components of the cell theory
  • Identifying cells as prokaryotic or eukaryotic
  • Listing the sequence of the mitotic cell cycle
    SC (7)
    4. Describe organisms in the six-kingdom classification system by their characteristics.
  • Recognizing genus and species as components of a scientific name
  • Identifying contributions of Aristotle and Linnaeus to the early history of taxonomy
    SC (7)
    5. Identify major differences between plants and animals, including internal structures, external structures, methods of locomotion, methods of reproduction, and stages of development.
  • Describing the processes of photosynthesis and cellular respiration
    SC (7)
    6. Describe evidence of species variation due to climate, changing landforms, interspecies interaction, and genetic mutation.
    Examples: fossil records over geologic time, rapid bacterial mutations due to environmental pressures
    SC (7)
    7. Describe biotic and abiotic factors in the environment.
    biotic—plants, animals;
    abiotic—climate, water, soil
  • Classifying organisms as autotrophs or heterotrophs
  • Arranging the sequence of energy flow in an ecosystem through food webs, food chains, and energy pyramids
    SC (8)
    1. Identify steps within the scientific process.
  • Applying process skills to interpret data from graphs, tables, and charts
  • Identifying controls and variables in a scientific investigation
  • Measuring dimension, volume, and mass using Systéme International d'Unités (SI units)
  • Identifying examples of hypotheses
  • Identifying appropriate laboratory glassware, balances, time measuring equipment, and optical instruments used to conduct an investigation
    SC (8)
    12. Classify waves as mechanical or electromagnetic.
    mechanical—earthquake waves;
    electromagnetic—ultraviolet light waves, visible light waves
  • Describing how earthquake waves, sound waves, water waves, and electromagnetic waves can be destructive or beneficial due to the transfer of energy
  • Describing longitudinal and transverse waves
  • Describing how waves travel through different media
  • Relating wavelength, frequency, and amplitude to energy
  • Describing the electromagnetic spectrum in terms of frequencies
  • Example: electromagnetic spectrum in increasing frequencies—microwaves, infrared light, visible light, ultraviolet light, X rays


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