Our Center sampled the polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in air and water in the Gulf of Mexico from the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. The level of PAHs in crude oil varies between 0.2 and 7%, depending on location. Although this seems like a small percent, PAHs are a significant toxicological health concern. Learn more
Dr. Kim Anderson created videos to educate communities that were impacted by the spill.
Contaminants in the Environment: How Can I Be Exposed? This video will show you where contaminants, such as PAHs, go when they enter the environment and how you can be exposed to them. Knowing where they are can help you avoid those areas and reduce your risk of coming into contact with harmful chemicals.
Overview: In this lesson students will review the BP oil spill and learn about current ways we are cleaning it up. They will test different methods that are currently being used in the gulf clean-up. After testing they will analyze the different methods and determine the most efficient way to clean up the oil spill. This activity is appropriate for grades 6th-8th.
In 2011, Toxicology graduate students participated in a seminar to gain practice in creating middle school curriculum and teaching students. The two activities below were the products of the course.
Chemical Conundrum (pdf) Mass is a measurement that may be used to separate individual chemicals out of a complex mixture. In this activity, students explore different methods of separating out a complex mixture, and explore the difference between mass and weight.Incorporating M & Ms makes it fun for the students while they learn about physical and chemical properties of matter.The activity relates to Oregon Science Standards 6.1P.1 and 7.1P.1
A Picture is Worth a Thousand Data Points (pdf) Data generated during scientific experiments is commonly and effectively represented in the form of a graph or figure. In this exercise students explore how to convert data to graphs and figures. The activity relates to Oregon Science Standard 7.3S.2.
Sorting M & M candy by various characteristics
Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAHs) Activity from NIEHS
Investigating PAHs: Your Own Mini-Epi Study - An activity from NIEHS for 10-12 grade. Students read EHP article “Prenatal PAH Exposure Causes Genetic Changes in Newborns,” and design a mini epidemiological study to identify potential sources of PAHs and at-risk populations in their community.
Exposure Activites from the EPA
Air Quality Index: An interactive activity adapted from "Air Quality Index: A Guide to Air Quality and Your Health" by the U.S. EPA examines how data related to pollutants in the air are collected and reported. For grades 6-12.
Fishing for Safe Food: In this interactive game adapted from the EPA, students on a fishing trip try to catch different types of fish. The game teaches students which fish have high or low levels of mercury, and how much is safe to eat.