Education Technology

Earth Science: Ocean Currents

by Texas Instruments - Simulation Lesson


  • Students will investigate and discover relationships between temperature and salinity as the driving force behind the global conveyor belt.
  • Students will differentiate the differences between surface currents and deep water currents.


  • thermohaline circulation
  • upwelling
  • density
  • oceanic conveyor belt

About the Lesson

In this lesson, students will explore the global oceanic current system. A guided lesson video (optional) is also available for this activity. The video is targeted at students and designed to help guide them through the interactive exploration and the concepts covered within. (It may also be helpful for teachers who may be using the activity for the first time.) 

**Note: Students should use the TI-Nspire computer software or TI-Nspire™ Apps for iPad® for an optimal experience with this lesson. Some images may be difficult for students to read on the handheld.

As a result, students will:

  • Discover that there is a global oceanic current system that is driven by changes in temperature and salinity.
  • Explain the process of upwelling and what effect it has on the current system.
  • Understand the impact thermal energy from the sun has on the current system.


This activity was created using Lua. Learn more about Lua in TI-Nspire here.