SeaWeek 2022 will be celebrated throughout Australia from 5-13 March. The theme this year is Our SEArch – what will you discover? It’s all about the fact that the Ocean is largely unexplored. This is a fascinating topic and a great reason for exploring all things relating to the ocean in schools and childcare settings this month. So, here’s some fascinating info about the ocean floor to set you on track, and ideas that will engage and inspire kids to want to learn more. Time to dive into SeaWeek 2022…
Is Most of the Ocean Unexplored?
Experts believe that more than 80 percent of the ocean floor is unexplored and has never been mapped. It’s crazy to think that a far larger percentage of the moon and the planet Mars has been mapped than the ocean on the planet where we live!
However, it’s probably not surprising when you consider that the ocean covers more than 70% of the surface of the earth. So, we are talking a huge area, with enormous variations in depth, much of which is very difficult to reach.
How Deep is the Ocean?
The depth of the ocean floor varies hugely, from the shallow blue waters of much of our coastline, to the darkness of the deep, deep ocean. So, to answer the question, “How deep is the ocean”, it’s tricky to give one answer. However, it’s generally agreed that the average depth of the ocean is 3.7 km.
What’s the Deepest Part of the Ocean?
Nowadays, we talk about the earth’s ‘one’ ocean as each named ocean (such as the Pacific Ocean) within it is connected to at least two other oceans, creating one whole ocean.
The deepest part of the ocean is in the Pacific Ocean. It is called Challenger Deep, after the HMS Challenger, whose crew first sounded (measured) the depths of the trench in 1875.
Challenger Deep lies at the southern end of the Mariana Trench and is around 10,984 metres deep. Compare that to Everest, which is 8,848 metres high, and it gives you an idea of the kind of depth we’re talking – about 11km. That’s deep!!!!
How do we Measure the Depth of the Ocean?
Measuring the depth of a body of water is called ‘sounding‘ or ‘sounding depth’. In order to measure the depth of the ocean, ships and boats use a sonar (Sound Navigation and Ranging) device, which sends sound waves to the bottom of the ocean and measures how long it takes for an echo to return.
We hope we have given you some ideas to get you thinking about celebrating SeaWeek 2022. Please see our blog and links below for more info.
Celebrating SeaWeek 2022
Read our BLOG ‘Celebrate SeaWeek Australia’, for ideas to celebrate SeaWeek 2022 and inspire kids to want to learn more about the ocean and to want to protect it
SeaWeek 2022 is hosted by the AAEE (Australian Association for Environmental Education). If you are planning to run a SeaWeek event, competition, or activity, they’d love to promote it! Email: firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.