MatchCard Science Ocean Zones Worksheet
Objective: Compare the amount of light at three different ocean zones.
MatchCard: Download below.
The ocean zones worksheet has a diagram of the three different ocean zones: euphotic zone, dysphotic zone, and aphotic zone. Information pieces will be matched to the correct zone.
Projects: Find out how much water filters out light.
Download and Use the Ocean Zones MatchCard
This is MatchCard #6
of the Oceanography Unit Study. More information on the MatchCard Science curriculum is at the bottom of this page.
Preliminary Activity: Light and Water
You will need:
- A tall transparent vase or glass
- Newspaper print or brochure to read
Place the vase over the print and have the students read it. Ask if they could read it if water was poured into the glass.
Fill the container about 1/4th full of water. Have the students read the print.
Explain that light can shine through water for a certain length. Ask how much water would be needed that light could not shine through.
In several steps, continue filling the container. Even when it gets to the top, they will be able to see the print. However, it will likely start getting a little blurry.
Explain that light can easily shine through 50 meters of water. Step out 50 meters on your yard and road.
After 1000 meters, light no longer shines through water. Have them estimate how far that would be from your house.
Using the Ocean Zones Worksheet
Show the ocean zones worksheet. The color print out shows three layers of darker blue. Explain it would be gradual, and that at the bottom it would be completely black (no light or color.)
The Euphotic Zone
The euphotic zone begins at the surface and ends about 50 meters below the surface.
Has enough light for photosynthesis to take place. Plankton and seaweed
are only found here.
The dysphotic zone starts at about 50 meters below the surface and continues to 1000 meters.
There is enough light for vision but not enough for photosynthesis. The nekton are the ocean creatures
that live at the dysphotic zone.
The amount of light decreases with depth.
The aphotic zone is more than 1000 meters below the surface and extends to the ocean floor
No light gets through the aphotic zone.
Animal life is rare and produces its own light through bioluminescence.
Cut apart the information pieces and have the students place them at the correct location on the ocean zones worksheet.
Color the Ocean Zones Worksheet
Black and white copies of the worksheet are included in the download. This is done to allow students to color the diagram, as well as save your ink cartridge if you choose to print a number of worksheets.
Have the students color the ocean, but they may only use two crayons: blue and black. (Alternative: use aqua-marine and black)
Start at the top and lightly color extending all the way down to the ocean floor. Then moving the crayon down to the dysphotic zone, again color down the page using slightly more pressure.
Continue this layer after layer making about ten layers instead of only three.
The last four layers, start applying the black crayon: first with light pressure, then medium, and finally firm black.
What's In a Name
Students in 5th grade and higher can analyze the names of the zones by considering the prefixes and suffix.
Photo means light. Make a list of words with "photo" in it.
- Photograph (Picture created by light)
- Photosynthesis (Glucose made by light)
- Photon (light particle)
"Eu" and "ev" are the Greek prefixes for good.
- Eulogy (study of a person's good qualities - often at a funeral)
- Euphemism (good sounding word or phrase instead of a blunt phase)
- Evangelism (good message)
"Dys" or "dis" mean difficult or bad
- Dysequilibrium (lack of balance)
- Dysfunction (functions poorly)
- Disease (literally means not at ease)
"A" and "an" both mean "not".
- Assymetrical (not in symmetry)
- Amoral (without morals)
To the Fields
If you have the opportunity to go into a swimming pool, lake, or ocean experiment with light reaching different depths.
Use a weak light source such as a penlight. One person stands above the water and shines it down. The other person can go underwater with goggles on to see the behavior of the light.
So Much Ocean to Study
The Ocean Floor