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Republic of the Philippines

State Universities and Colleges


GUIMARAS STATE COLLEGE
Mc Lain, Buenavista, Guimaras
GRADUATE SCHOOL

SOC. SCI. 216 - MAN AND HIS ENVIRONMENT

ROMMEL D. SOLIVA, M.Ed.


LODRIGO G. BASCO, JR., Ph.D. JEFF REY P. SARINAS, M.Ed.
Professor Discussant

CONTINENTS AND OCEANS OF THE WORLD

I. Learning Objectives:
At the end of the lesson, the participants must have:
 Described the continents and oceans of the world.
 Named other bodies of water and cite their importance.
 Described problems existing in oceans which affect the livelihood of the
people.

II. Introduction

Our planet Earth, where all of us live is


one of the most diverse planets known to
human being. Though there have been so much
advances in the astronomy over the years, we
have never been able to find a planet as diverse
as earth which is home to millions of living
organisms like our mother earth is. In the
millions and zillions of stars and planets which
comprise our universe, our earth is of the size
less than the size of the point of a needle. But for us, the small living beings on this
planet, this is a very huge home.

Our earth is made up of large land masses known as continents and water
bodies known as oceans. The earth has not been like this always as how we see it
now. Millions of years before there were only one large land mass and a large ocean
surrounding it. Later on the land mass started to split and drift apart surrounded by
ocean on all sides. This process is still going on. Now we have 7 continents and 5
oceans which are home to all of us and millions of other living organisms. Let us
learn about each of these seven continents and five oceans that make up our planet
earth.
III. Discussion
THE 7 CONTINENTS OF THE WORLD

What is a Continent?

Though there are many definitions of the term “continent,” it is generally


used to identify large distinct land masses that make up planet Earth’s surface. What
we know as land are actually the areas which happen to be at a high enough
elevation to not be flooded by the lakes, rivers, and oceans of the world which
surround them. The continents shapes and boundaries are ever-changing as the
water surrounding them defines the land that makes up the continent. It is
important to remember the five oceans of the world, as the continents make up just
1/3rd of Earth’s surface.

AFRICA - The second largest continent, covers 1/3 of the Earth’s land surface.

Land Area of Africa: 11,670,000 (mi²) / 28,489,869 (km²)


Population of Africa: 1,119,307,147 (2016)
Largest City in Africa: Lagos, Nigeria (15,118,780 (2014))

While Africa is first alphabetically, it is second in both


population and size among the Earth’s seven continents.
Over 1 billion people can call Africa home. The people of
Africa are spread across 54 different countries in Africa. This
continent is home to 15% of the world’s population and the
continent makes up 20% of the total land area on planet earth. Africa is also
attributed with being the birthplace of mankind. The oldest fossil evidence of Homo
sapiens was found in the eastern part of the continent.

Antarctica

Land Area of Antarctica: 5,405,000 (mi²) / 12,949,940


(km²)
Population of Antarctica: 4,912 (2015)
Largest City in Antarctica: McMurdo Station (1,258
(2013))

The continent of Antarctica is positioned as the


southernmost land mass on Earth. The South Pole can be
found here among its large permanent glaciers and frigid weather. Even though
Antarctica has one of the harshest climates and most unwelcoming terrains on
planet Earth, there are still nearly five thousand people that temporarily call this
continent home every year. This makes Antarctica the least populated continent on
Earth. Antarctica is known as the coldest landmass and has few native plants or
animals because most of the continent is covered in sheets of ice that can be more
than a mile thick which forms permanent glaciers. You can find penguins, seals,
plants, and fungi in Antarctica. Interestingly, this continent is the only one which has
no reptiles on its land mass.

Asia

Land Area of Asia: 17,210,000 (mi²) / 44,029,797 (km²)


Population of Asia: 4,494,302,221 (2016)
Largest City in Asia: Tokyo, Japan (37,126,000 (2012))

Asia covers nearly 9 percent of the earth’s surface


making it the largest of the continents. It is also the home to
the most people with an estimated population of 4.3 billion
as of 2015 which represents nearly 60% of the world’s
population. With this many people, Asia is attributed with
being a vital part of the world’s economy. Asia contains some
of the oldest civilizations among the 7 continents including the countries of China
and Japan. Asia includes the Saudi Arabia peninsula with the oil-rich countries
including the United Arab Emirates and Kuwait. The continent also includes the
manufacturing centers of India and Japan and Hong Kong, which is a leading
banking and corporate center.

Australia

Land Area of Australia: 2,970,000 (mi²) / 5,179,976 (km²)


Population of Australia: 39,901,000 (2016)
Largest City in Australia: Sydney, Australia (4,921,000
(2015))

The continent of Australia includes the mainland of the


country Australia and the island regions of New Guinea,
Tasmania, and Seram. During ice ages, when much of the
world’s water was frozen in glaciers, the Australian mainland was connected by land
bridges to these islands. Australia is the smallest of the 7 continents but is home to
the sixth largest country which is known by the same name, Australia. Australia is
the most isolated and remote continent of the 7 continents and has been least
influenced by migrations of people, plants, and animals. This had led to Australia
having a wide variety of animals and plants which are unique in the world such as

Australia is one of the least populated continents yet the country of Australia
is the 12th largest economy in the world.

Europe

Land Area of Europe: 3,931,000 (mi²) / 7,769,964 (km²)


Population of Europe: 738,849,000 (2016)
Largest City in Europe: Istanbul, Turkey (14,657,434 (2016))

The western portion of the Eurasian landmass is known as Europe. It is noted


as one of the smallest of the 7 continents after Australia, with 7 percent of the
world’s landmass. However, Europe is home to about 11% of Earth’s population and
is the second most densely populated continent, with 134 people per square mile,
behind Asia’s 203 people per square mile.

There are several bodies of water that surround the continent of Europe. To
the south, you will find the Mediterranean Sea and the Black Sea, to the west is the
Atlantic Ocean, and to the north is the Arctic Ocean.

North America

Land Area of North America: 9,540,000 (mi²) /


23,309,892 (km²)
Population of North America: 579,024,000 (2016)
Largest City in North America: Mexico City, Mexico
(19,411,000 (2012))

The North American continent is the 3rd largest continent. It includes the
countries of Canada, United States, Greenland, Mexico and the Latin American
regions that serve as a connection between North and South America. North America
makes up about 17 percent of the world’s landmass and is home to about 8 percent
of the people. The continent is found entirely in the northern hemisphere and
surrounded by the Arctic Ocean to the north, the Pacific Ocean to the West, and the
Atlantic Ocean to the east.

South America

Land Area of South America: 6,888,000 (mi²) /


15,539,928 (km²)
Population of South America: 414,332,000 (2015)
Largest City in South America: São Paulo, Brazil
(21,090,791 (2014))

The South American continent is the southern portion of the larger American
continent and located in the southern hemisphere. The equator passes through the
continent offering a tropical climate for much of the landmass with temperate
conditions possible in the south. South America is surrounded by the Pacific Ocean
on the western border and the Atlantic Ocean on its eastern border..

South America is home to incredible biodiversity. South America includes the


Andes Mountains which comprise the longest range of peaks in the world. It is home
to the Amazon River, which passes the largest volume of water of any river in the
world.
THE 5 MAJOR OCEANS OF THE EARTH

The surface of Planet Earth is around 70% water, over 96% of which is salt
water. While this vast area is mostly interconnected, it is broken up into large and
small bodies by the seven continents and other landmasses. The largest of these
bodies are known as the Great Oceans.

Pacific Ocean

 The Pacific is the largest of these oceans, covering


63,784,077 sq miles (165,200,000 km²).
 It fills the area between the western coastline of the
Americas, the eastern coastlines of Asia and Australia,
and is capped to the North and South by the Arctic and
Antarctic regions.
 In part because of the numerous tropical islands of East
Asia, the Pacific boasts the longest total shoreline, some
84,300 miles (135,663 km).
 It also holds the deepest point on the earth’s sea floor, the Challenger Deep
in the Marianas Trench, near the island of Guam. At close to 11,000 meters
below sea level, or almost 7 miles, this crevice was first sounded in 1875 by
the HMS Challenger.
 It would be thought that life forms could not exist at that depth and extreme
water pressure.
 The Pacific was named by Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan, who set
sail from Spain in 1519 to find a westerly route to the Spice Islands around
the southernmost tip of South America.
 Rounding the Horn for the first time in November 1520, Magellan passed
through the Straits now named for him into a vast sea so calm he described it
as a “beautiful, peaceful [pacific] ocean.”

Atlantic Ocean

 The next largest ocean is the Atlantic, with an area of


41,081,270 sq miles (106,400,000 km²).
 It is bounded by the Americas to its west, and by the
western shores of Europe and Africa to its east.
 It includes the Mediterranean, Caribbean and Baltic
Seas, and the Gulf of Mexico. Like the Pacific Ocean, it
reaches to the Arctic and Antarctica.
 In European History, the Indian and eastern Atlantic Oceans were the most
completely charted of the world’s seas until the 15th Century; indeed this
area was considered the sum total of the known world.
 With the escalation of the Spice Trade, desire for a Western route to the East
Indies
Indian Ocean

 The Indian Ocean covers a 28,400,130 sq mile (73,556,000 km²) area


between the eastern coast of Africa, the shores of the Middle East and India
to its north, and is separated from the Atlantic Ocean
by Southeast Asia and Australia/Oceania.
 Home to a great variety of humankind throughout
history, the Indian Ocean is also rich in exotic plant
and animal species, and still supplies the world with
spices such as black pepper, nutmeg, and ginger.
While these spices are now used primarily to flavor the
world’s cuisines, they were used from earliest times to
preserve foods, and were thought to have great
medicinal properties.
 Indeed, during the terrible plagues of the 13th through 17th Centuries,
Europeans were so convinced of their curative powers that their countries
fought repeated wars and gambled untold fortunes to gain control of the
Spice Islands, and the number of explorers and sailors willing to risk their
lives charting new maps to reach them is difficult to imagine.

Arctic Ocean

 At 5,400,025 sq miles (13,986,000 km²), the Arctic is


the smallest and shallowest of the five Oceans, and
falls mostly within the Arctic Circle.
 It is surrounded by the Eurasian and North American
continents, and includes Hudson Bay and the North
and Barents Seas.
 For most of the year, these seas are a mass of ice
often hundreds of feet thick; even during the brief summer months ice can
make the Arctic Ocean impassable, and it wasn’t known until modern times
that there is little solid ground in the most northern reaches of the Earth.
 Nonetheless, its icy landscape has been inhabited since ancient times by the
hardy ancestors of the Inuit of North America, the Sami of Scandinavia, and
the Nenets of Russia.
 The great explorers of the 16th-19th Centuries were determined to find
passage from the North Atlantic through to the rich shores of Asia in search of
spices, silks and opium.
 The majority of these explorations ended in failure and disaster; but in the
19th and 20th Centuries accurate passage was finally charted through the
mostly frozen waters.

Southern Ocean

 Until the mid-20th Century, the waters surrounding


Antarctica were generally considered to be extensions
of the adjoining oceans. But in 2000, members of the
International Hydrographic Organization almost
unanimously agreed to identify these southernmost waters as the Southern
Ocean.
 Although its definite boundaries are yet to be determined, below 60°S latitude
is generally accepted, giving it an area of 7,848,299 sq miles (20,327,000
km²), and making it the fourth largest of the Earth’s oceans.
 Joining waters of the southern Pacific, Atlantic and Indian Oceans with a
persistent easterly current, the frigid Southern Ocean has a great influence on
the Earth’s weather patterns.

IMPORTANCE OF CANALS OF SHIP CANALS TO SHIPPING INDUSTRY

Historically canals were of immense importance to commerce and the


development, growth and vitality of a civilization.
A ship canal is a canal especially intended to accommodate ships used on
the oceans, seas or lakes to which it is connected, as opposed to a barge canal
intended to carry barges and other vessels specifically designed for river and/or
canal navigation. Because of the constraints of accommodating vessels capable of
navigating large bodies of open water, a ship canal
typically offers deeper water and higher bridge
clearances than a barge canal of similar vessel length
and width constraints.
Ship canals may be specially constructed from
the start to accommodate ships, or less frequently
they may be enlarged barge canals, or canalized or
channelized rivers. There are no specific minimum
dimensions for ship canals, with the size being largely dictated by the size of ships in
use nearby at the time of construction or enlargement.

Ship canals may be constructed for a number of reasons, including:


1. To create a shortcut and avoid lengthy detours.
2. To create a navigable shipping link between two land-locked seas or lakes.
3. To provide inland cities with a direct shipping link to the sea.
4. To provide an economical alternative to other options.

OTHER BODIES OF WATERS AND ITS IMPORTANCE

Oceans:

 The oceans are vast and deep bodies of water. Usually, it is these oceans that
separate continents from one another. The oceans are bodies of salt water.
 We have five oceans in our world. They are the Pacific Ocean, the Atlantic
Ocean, Indian Ocean, Arctic Ocean, the Southern Ocean or Antarctic Ocean.
 The largest and deepest ocean in the world is the Pacific ocean, covering one-
third of the earth’s surface.
 This is followed by the Atlantic ocean and the Indian ocean in order of size.
 Oceans are home to a variety of plants and seaweed and thousands of sea
creatures like the sea urchins, whales, sharks, octopus, a variety of fish,
snakes, squids etc.
 In fact, oceans also contain millions of tiny dead animals called coral polyps
which form the beautiful coral reefs, Australia being the largest coral reef in
the world.
 Oceans are useful to us in many ways as they are a rich source of minerals,
they provide energy and valuable fuels like petroleum.
 They work as an important channel of transportation.

Seas:

 Seas are also big water bodies but are definitely


smaller than oceans. They are partly enclosed
by a land mass and open into the ocean.
 We see many seas eventually connecting to the
oceans. For example we have the
Mediterranean Sea which is attached or joins
the Atlantic Ocean.
 Some of the seas are the Red Sea, the Black Sea, the Arabian Sea, Caribbean
Sea and the Mediterranean Sea.
 The Red and the Black Sea, have got their names because the Red Sea has
millions of red tiny plants growing at the bottom and the Black Sea because
of the thick black mud that lies at its bottom.
 Under the seas we find huge plains, high mountains and even deep valleys,
interesting isn’t it, that these various landforms are also present under the
sea.
 The largest of the seas is the South China Sea which is supposed be holding
hundreds of islands in its waters .
 The sea, like the oceans is useful to us in many ways.It is a rich source of
food providing us with various kinds of sea food.
 It also works as a channel for transportation.
 Like oceans, seas are a source of food, and are also usually used extensively
as transport lanes for ships.

Lakes:

 A lake is a wate r body surrounded by land on all


sides. It is actually the opposite of an island, which
is a piece of land surrounded by water on all sides.
 Lakes can be salty or fresh water lakes. Salty lakes
are due to a lot of evaporation taking place.
 Some famous lakes are-Lake Superior, Caspian
Sea, Lake Victoria, Lake Aral and the Dal Lake.
 In fact the Caspian Sea is the world’s largest salt lake, it is so big that it is
referred to as sea.
 Lake Superior is the biggest fresh water lake.
 The Dead Sea is a salt water lake.
 It is said that nothing can survive in the Dead Sea because it is very salty.
Rivers:

 Rivers are large streams that flow over the land.


They are hence large flowing water bodies, they
usually end up in an ocean or sea.
 Rivers are fresh water bodies which generally
originate in mountainous areas or elevated areas.
 We have basically two kinds of rivers which are, the
Snow-fed rivers and the second is the Rain-fed
rivers.
 Snow-fed rivers find their source in the snow capped mountains, where the
snow melts, flowing down forming rivers, rain-fed rivers as the name
suggests are formed in areas where it rains a lot giving rise to these rivers.
 The place where a river starts its journey, is called the source and the place
where it ends its journey , is called the mouth of a river.
 Rivers again are very useful as we have seen in history, that most civilizations
were formed near the banks of the rivers, like the Egyptian Civilization on the
banks of the River Nile, the Indus Valley Civilization on the banks of the River
Indus.
 This is because the rivers deposit a lot of fertile soil called silt which is
excellent for the growing of crops.

Waterfall:

 Water falling from a height is usually called a


waterfall. A waterfall is formed when a river flows
over an edge of hard rocks and falls from a great
height.
 Waterfalls make beautiful tourist spots and are
helpful in generating hydroelectric power.
 The Angel falls in South America are the world’s highest waterfall.

PROBLEMS EXISTING IN OCEANS WHICH AFFECT THE LIVELIHOOD OF


THE PEOPLE

For centuries, people assumed that the ocean was bottomless and immune to
human impacts. It’s only recently that scientists have come to understand the
devastating effects we’ve already had on our oceans. Global fish populations—a
critical source of food for millions of people—are collapsing. The barbaric practice of
commercial whaling is still legal and practiced in Norway, Iceland, and Japan.
Plastics and toxic waste are making their way into our waters. Currently, less than
two percent of our oceans are set aside as marine reserves, making it all too easy to
exploit their natural resources.

Without proper protection, overfishing, bycatch, pollution, and other issues


have become major threats to the health of our oceans.
Overfishing & Destructive Fishing
Overfishing is threatening food security for hundreds of millions of people and
destroying ocean ecosystems worldwide.
We’ve already removed at least two-thirds of the large fish in the ocean, and one
in three fish populations have collapsed since 1950. Put simply, there are too many
boats chasing too few fish.

Commercial Whaling
The practice was rampant for so long that many whale species may never
recover. In the US, the North Atlantic right whale is down to about 350 remaining
individuals. The blue whales of the Antarctic are at less than 1 percent of their
original population. West Pacific grey whale populations are the most endangered of
the world’s great whales, hovering on the edge of extinction with only slightly more
than 100 remaining.

Pollution & Climate Change


Oil spills and other pollution at sea—while they carry serious consequences—actually
account for a small fraction of ocean pollution. Nearly half of all ocean pollution
comes from activities that take place on land, like sewage, industrial and agricultural
runoff, garbage dumping, and chemical spills.

Human Rights on Land & At Sea


Changing the way we treat our oceans isn’t just about the creatures that live in
them, it’s about the people that depend on them. Globally, more than three billion
people depend on our oceans and coastal ecosystems for their livelihood.

IV. Questions
1. What compose the continents of the world?
2. What are the oceans of the world?
3. What are the other bodies of waters? Explain its importance.
4. What are the problems existing in oceans which affect the livelihood of
the people?

V. References:
http://www.whatarethe7continents.com/
http://www.whatarethe7continents.com/the-worlds-five-great-oceans/
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ship_canal
http://www.greenpeace.org/usa/oceans/issues/