SPONSORED BY THE LAURA MOORE CUNNINGHAM FOUNDATION

Oceans: Glossary

A

Algae
a type of plant that does not have stems or leaves
altitude
height
anemone
marine animal that has a tentacles that surround a mouth - has a flower like appearance
atoll
a circular series of islands left over from a fallen volcano
attribute
quality or characteristic

B

barnacle
a small shelled crustacean that attaches itself to boats, rocks and other solid objects
bends
a condition in which carbon dioxide forms bubbles in the blood
bulge
bump

C

carnivore
a meat eating animal
chemical
a substance
circulate
mix
climate
long range weather
clockwise
going in the direction of a clock
coastal
along the coast or shore
composition
structure
compress
squeeze together
condense
make smaller
consumption
to take in - eat or drink
continental shelf
shallow part of the ocean floor near the shoreline
continental slope
steeper portion of the ocean floor after the continental shelf
continents
large land masses on the crust
coral
a marine animal that resembles a rocklike plant
Coriolis Effect
a force on the earth created by the earth turning on its axis which effects the oceans and winds
counterclockwise
going in the opposite direction of a clock
current
a river-like movement of water that flows in the ocean
cyclone
hurricane

D

decompose
to break down into parts
dense
thick
digest
to break food into its nutritional parts
displace
to move and leave a space
dissolved
to break down

E

ecosystem
the interaction between living and nonliving organisms in a community
element
nature, predators, weather, etc
erosion
the moving rocks by wind, water, etc
evaporate
the heating of liquid that changes it to vapor

F

food chain
a system that carries nutrition through living organisms
food web
a more complex system but similar to a food chain
friction
the rubbing of surfaces together

G

generate
create
geographically
related to land and its natural features
gravity
the pull between bodies
guyots
a weathered volcano that has a flattened top

H

hazardous
dangerous
herbivore
plant eating animal
hurricane
a huge ocean storm

I

industry
business activity
inhabit
live
internal organ
parts of a body’s inside - intestines, stomach, etc

J

jet stream
strong, concentrated winds that generally move westward

K

kelp
a brown cold water seaweed

L

landslide
the falling of material from a mountain or higher area
low pressure area
an area of warm air where the weight and pushing force of the air is reduced

M

manganese
brittle element that makes steel strong
meteor
space debris
migration
seasonal journey
mineral
non-living solid
monsoon
a wind that blows seasonally in Asia

N

nutrients
good parts of food

O

oceanographer
scientist who studies oceans
omnivore
animal that eats plants and animals

P

penetrate
go inside or enter
photosynthesis
process where plants use the sunlight to create sugar
phytoplankton
one celled plants life in the ocean
pollution
harmful substances that get into the environment
precipitation
rain, snow, sleet or hail
predator
animals that hunt their food

R

researcher
scientist who studies or investigates
resource
supply
restrict
limit

S

salinity
saltiness
sandbar
a gathering of sand caused by wave action
scuba
equipment for diving
seagrass
type of ocean plant with grass-like features
sediments
material that settles to the bottom of a liquid, often sand or soil, ground rock and minerals
shoreline
coast
starfish
5 armed sea animal resembling a star
sunlit zone
shallow area of the ocean that gets sunlight
surf
breaking waves on a beach or on rocks

T

technology
the science of inventing that creates practical outcomes
tectonic plates
plates of the earth’s crust that move on the mantle
tide
the regular movement of ocean water brought on by the gravity of the sun and moon
tide pool
small pools of water that form near the ocean - small sea life often grows in them
transport
move or carry
tsunami
large ocean wave caused by earthquakes
typhoon
hurricane

V

vertically
upright
violent
forceful

W

water cycle
the hydrologic cycle in which water goes through evaporation, condensation, and precipitation
wavelength
distance from one wave to the next
weathering
breaking down of matter by wind or water, etc

Z

zooplankton
one celled animals
PBS
Find Us on TV

© 2017 Idaho Public Televison

Idaho State Board of Education, an agency of the State of Idaho