Waves and Tides

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In this 7-10 day investigation, learners develop an understanding of waves and tides and their motion through discussion, demonstration, and hands-on activities. Learners demonstrate wave motion in containers and create marigrams to show local tide data and to compare tide patterns from different parts of the world. Learners consider whether waves or tides account for the movement of bath toys to their final locations. This detailed lesson plan includes learner hand-outs, evaluation questions, and curricular connections.

Quick Guide

Materials List (per group of students)


Informal Category

  • Nature and Environment


  • Earth and Space Science
    • Earth Processes
      • Geochemical Cycles
    • Earth Structure
      • Oceans and Water
    • Earth, Moon and Sun
      • Tides
  • Engineering and Technology
    • Engineering
      • Ocean Engineering
    • Technology
      • Information and Communication
  • Life Sciences
    • Ecology
      • Ecosystems
  • Mathematics
    • Algebra
      • Patterns
    • Data Analysis and Probability
      • Data Analysis
      • Data Collection
      • Data Representation
    • Representation
  • Physical Sciences
    • Energy
      • Potential and Kinetic Energy
      • Energy and Power
    • Motion and Forces
      • Gravity
      • Rotation Motion
    • States of Matter
      • Liquids
    • Vibration and Waves
      • Wave Properties
      • Wave Motion
  • The Nature of Science
    • The Scientific Process
      • Conducting Investigations
      • Gathering Data
      • Formulating Explanations
      • Communicating Results
Place and Time

To use this activity learners need to

  • see
  • see color
  • read
  • touch

Learning styles supported

  • Involves teamwork and communication skills
  • Involves hands-on or lab activities
Includes alignment to state and/or national standards:
Includes assessments for student learning:


Alaska Sea Grant


All Rights Reserved, Alaska Sea Grant, ©2011

Funding sources

  • Alaska Department of Education & Early Development



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