For Educators

Here is a list of resources on sea-level rise to support formal and informal educators.  Please contact us if you know of additional resources we should add.

Curricula, Lesson Plans and Educator Modules


Lesson Plan: Sea Level Rise and King Tides, a University of Southern California Sea Grant  lesson plan, helps teachers integrate King Tides photography into the study of rising sea levels and climate change impacts. While developed for California audiences, much of the information is readily transferable to educators in the Gulf of Maine region.

Lesson Plan: Impacts of Topography on Sea Level Change, available through CLEAN, uses topographic maps and web-based animations to explore impacts of melting ice and increases in sea level. The lesson includes sufficient activities for three class periods, and is geared towards students in grades 7-12.

Lesson Plan: Sea Level—On the Rise is an hour-long lesson developed by US EPA to help students understand thermal expansion and the global dynamics of melting ice. It can be paired with the US EPA’s 12-minute “climate change expedition” video activity,, which explains how climate change causes sea-level rise and how that rise jeopardizes low-lying areas.

Lesson Plan: Thermal Expansion of Water, offered by the US Department of Energy, provides an experiment (appropriate for grades 6 and up) to demonstrate the concept of water’s thermal expansion when heated (analogous to the thermal expansion of oceans in response to global warming).

Climate Literacy and Energy Awareness Network (CLEAN) offers guidance to help educators find ways to teach the principle that “climate change will have consequences for the Earth system and human lives.”

Educator Module: Coastal Consequences of Sea Level Rise is a multi-media learning module for teachers co-produced by NASA and PBS. 

Climate Literacy, an overview of essential principles about climate science produced by the US Global Change Research Program, offers teachers helpful background for in-class activities on climate change and sea-level rise.  

The National Estuarine Research Reserve System’s “Estuaries 101 Middle School Curriculumincludes some climate extensions, and its Activity 3 (“Water Going Up, Water Going Down”) focuses on sea- level rise.


Background Information

Sea Level Rise Viewers



Background Resources

More Resources on Sea-Level Rise

Citizen Science Opportunity for Schools

  • Anecdata, a citizen science portal, provides a map where schools can post and tag king tides images, creating a bank of geo-located images that community members can readily access.