Repair the Ozone

Don't Zone Out on the Ozone!

For Your Information

The Ozone protects us from the sun by interacting with light. The Ozone is located in the stratosphere layer of the atmosphere. It is nine to 31 miles above the Earth and serves as a protective shield; the Ozone helps to filter out harmful sun rays including a type of sunlight called ultraviolet B. Exposure to ultraviolet B has been linked to development of cataracts (eye damage) and skin cancer.

Scientists have found "holes" in the ozone layer high above the Earth. The 1990 Clean Air Act has provisions for fixing the holes, but the repairs will take a long time.

Since the Clean Air Act, scientists have been measuring the ozone layer. A few years ago, an ozone hole was found above Antarctica, including the area of the South Pole. This hole, which has been appearing each year during the Antarctic winter (our summer), is bigger than the continental United States. What, especially concerning to scientists, is they recently have found the ozone thinning in the stratosphere above the northern half of the United States. To repair the ozone layer, we must stop releasing ozone-depleting compounds into the atmosphere.

In our game, the frisbees represent the ultraviolet light, while the hoops/yarn balls are the oxygen molecules. When ultraviolet light hits oxygen molecules (O2) in the stratosphere, it splits the molecules into two atoms of oxygen (O). When this atom encounters another oxygen molecule, the two combine to make ozone (O3).


  1. Scatter hoops on the floor, mixing the colors so that they’re not grouped.

  2. Set cones down in a straight line, across from the hoops.

  3. Place 3 frisbees/yarn balls at each cone.

  4. Arrange the students into small groups of about 4,

    and assign each group to a cone.

  5. Students must throw the frisbee/yarn balls from their cone.
  6. When a frisbee/yarn ball lands in a hoop matching their color, the group gets to keep the hoop, placing it around their cone.
  7. If the frisbee/yarn ball bounces off or out of the hoop, the may not be saved.
  8. If frisbees from two different groups land in the same hoop, the student use rock, paper, scissors to determine who gets to keep the hoop.