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Coastal Heritage Curriculum Connection

Explore Curriculum Connection guides, which are written to accompany each issue of Coastal Heritage, a quarterly publication of the S.C. Sea Grant Consortium.

Coastal Heritage, Summer 2012 issue: No Worries? The New Science of Risk and Choice

Focus Questions

  • Are human beings considered to be more rational or emotional? Give examples to support your answer.
  • What are the two cognitive processes listed? What are the fundamental differences between the two?
  • What is a main reason for irrational decisions being made? What is the one common illusion that humans possess?
  • What is a “nudge”?
  • What types of risks are encountered by living along the coast? Do people living along the coast truly understand the level of risk of natural disasters? Why or why not?

Use the Curriculum Connection to address these South Carolina Standards!



4th Grade: Weather
4-4.3: Summarize the conditions and effects of severe weather phenomena (including thunderstorms, hurricanes, and tornadoes) and related safety concerns.

5th Grade: Ecosystems: Terrestrial and Aquatic
5-2.3: Compare the characteristics of different ecosystems (including estuaries/salt marshes, oceans, lakes and ponds, forests, and grasslands).

6th Grade: Earth’s Atmosphere and Weather
6-4.1: Summarize the relationship of the movement of air masses, high and low pressure systems, and frontal boundaries to storms (including thunderstorms, hurricanes, and tornadoes) and other weather conditions.



9th – 12th: Earth’s Atmosphere
ES-4.8: Predict weather conditions and storms (including thunderstorms, hurricanes, and tornadoes) on the basis of the relationship among the movement of air masses, high and low pressure systems, and frontal boundaries.

ES-4.6: Summarize possible causes of and evidence for past and present global climate changes.

ES-4.7: Summarize the evidence for the likely impact of human activities on the atmosphere (including ozone holes, greenhouse gases, acid rain, and photochemical smog).

Lesson Links

Local Climate and Weather Resources

  • Check out the South Carolina State Climatology Office www.dnr.sc.gov/climate/sco . (K-12)
  • Check out your coastal elevation by visiting the NOAA Digital Coast site at: www.csc.noaa.gov/digitalcoast . Which areas of South Carolina have natural buffers of protection (ie., wetlands and barrier islands)? What areas might be more prone to heavy damage during another hurricane?  (6th – 12th)
  • The Southeast Coastal Ocean Observing Regional Association (SECOORA) secoora.org is a regional resource for integrating coastal and ocean data. Check out the information found on this site, especially the “Marine and Weather Applications” under the category “Data and Maps” on the homepage. (9th – 12th)


Hurricane’s A Comin’ – NASA and NOAA’s Hurricane Information Sites

Additional Activities

  • Check on the South Carolina State Climatology Office site www.dnr.sc.gov/climate/sco and describe the difference between the category levels of hurricanes. What is the difference between a hurricane watch and a hurricane warning? (6th – 12th)
  • Look through the history of those hurricanes that made landfall near or directly on South Carolina. How many category 4 storms have there been? How many category 5 storms? (6th – 12th)
  • Check out the activity, “Surge of the Storm,” located on the SECOORA website: secoora.org/classroom/virtual_hurricane/surge_of_the_storm . How might you prepare for safety in the event of a strong hurricane? (4th – 12th)