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Further Investigations: Wave-Coast Interactions

  1. Research the relationship between beach features and surf. How do things like sandbars, coral reefs, and rip currents affect breaking waves and surf conditions?
     
  2. Take pictures and notes on beach features at the same beach over time. Are there differences in beach features in different seasons? How does the beach change after storm events?
     
  3. Observe wave patterns near manmade structures such as groins, jetties, docks, or piers. How do different structures affect waves?
     
  4. Rip currents can be extremely dangerous. Research the parts of a rip current including the feeder, neck, and head. What conditions make rip currents faster and more dangerous?
     
  5. Windward and leeward coasts are determined by the orientation of an island in relation to the direction of the prevailing wind.
    1. How do prevailing winds shape the features of each coast? For example, which coast is generally steeper? Why?
    2. Which coast tends to get more rain? Why?

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Exploring Our Fluid Earth, a product of the Curriculum Research & Development Group (CRDG), College of Education. University of Hawaii, 2011. This document may be freely reproduced and distributed for non-profit educational purposes.