Shortcut Navigation:

Deep Sea Vents

The deep oceans are Earth's last undiscovered frontier. And the deep sea vent communities are weird enough to convince your students that this is one science topic well worth studying! These resources will help your students make real-world connections to biology, geology, and chemistry. They'll also master many important science skills, including skills in research (on and off the Web), observation, description, and analysis.



Light and Dark in the Sea

Only the top 200 meters (656 feet) of the ocean get enough light to support plants. Below 1,000 meters (3,281 feet), there's complete darkness. So how do organisms on the sea floor find food?



The Chemistry of Deep Sea Vents

Valuable ore deposits of iron, copper, and zinc—all formed by deep sea vents and thrust up onto land. If you want to know how mineral deposits are formed, look to the ocean.



Under Pressure

Why does pressure increase the deeper you go in the ocean? And does this building pressure change the way water flows? Fill a soda bottle with plain water, and find out. 



Sinking Water

If you've spent even a few hours in a pool, you know that the deep end is colder than the shallow. But do you know why? Experiment with colored ice cubes for insight into water density.



Simple Submarine

Plop, plop. Fizz, fizz. Dive, dive. Build your own mini submarines for a deeper look at how they work. No expensive supplies required—just Alka Seltser tablets and household objects.

its aliiive

Classroom Activity

It's Aliiive--Or Is It?

Scientists have found life everywhere they've looked on Earth—even at the bottom of the ocean, where conditions are extreme. Investigate one deep sea vent's thriving ecosystem.


Is it Alive?

Despite extreme temperatures and the absence of sunlight, you can find a variety of life on the ocean floor. Take a look at the amazing organisms that thrive in this unlikely environment.


Classroom Activity

Underwater Plume

With the help of three friends, you can create your own mini underwater geyser. All you'll need is a soda bottle, a baby food jar, aluminum foil, food coloring, and a few more household supplies.


American Museum of Natural History

Central Park West at 79th Street
New York, NY 10024-5192
Phone: 212-769-5100

Open daily from 10 am-5:45 pm
except on Thanksgiving and Christmas
Maps and Directions

Enlighten Your Inbox

Stay informed about Museum news and research, events, and more!