Lesson Plan #6 – Experimenting with PH



Students will understand that the amount of CO2 absorbed by the ocean directly affects the PH balance of the water and the health of many marine species, especially those with a shell.


Ocean acidification happens when the pH (scale of acidity and alkalinity) changes and shows an increase in acidity of the Earth’s oceans. This is caused by the too much carbon dioxide (CO2) put into the atmosphere by human beings. More than 50% of our planet’s carbon dioxide in the air gets absorbed into the oceans. Our oceans are like a giant sponge that soaks up CO2 and releases Oxygen. When carbon dioxide in the atmosphere increases, the carbon dioxide in the ocean increases, too.

Conclusion: When carbon dioxide is absorbed into the planet’s oceans, it makes it more acidic.


What is PH? What does increased CO2, which results in ocean acidification, do to phytoplankton with calcium carbonate shells and other small crustaceans? How do our choices as humans affect the health of phytoplankton and other small crustaceans?


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