Communicate important science!
Do crafts, look through microscopes and cuddle giant microbes!
The Broader Impacts Group (BIG) will be doing demonstrations and activities at the New England Aquarium on World Oceans Day.
Our booth “Making the Invisible Visible: The Secret, Bizarre, and Amazing World of Plankton” is complete with giant microbe plush toys, microscope demonstrations, build-your-own-super-plankton craft activity and jaw-dropping plankton video footage.
It was a big hit at the 2013 Cambridge Science Festival (CSF), so we are excited to take it on a second run. Check out a photo slideshow of the booth at the CSF here and this article in the MIT News here!
Why are plankton important?
The term plankton comes from the Greek word “Planktos” meaning wanderer or drifter. Plankton are tiny plants (phytoplankton) and animals (zooplankton) that are incapable of swimming against major currents in the ocean. Although plankton are so small that they go unnoticed to the naked eye, they are some of the most important and oldest marine creatures out there! Plankton influence atmospheric levels of the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide and our global climate – they provide roughly half of the oxygen that we breathe! These tiny organisms have left behind their mark on our planet for millions of years, including beautiful geological deposits like the massive White Cliffs of Dover, as well as key natural resources in oil and gas reserves.