Ice-breaker activity to get students thinking about what dead zones are; serves as an assessment of prior knowledge.   


Students will become engaged in the topic and begin to visually organize the complex factors that contribute to an ecological phenomenon. 



  1. Hand out paper/drawing supplies and have the students work either individually or in groups to draw what they know about dead zones.
  2. Hang up the drawings and lead a “gallery walk,” having the artists share what they drew.  Instructor can begin to introduce key vocabulary and concepts through discussion of drawings.
  3. Save the drawings to revisit at the end of the unit.