Teaching Resources

Teaching environmental issues in your classroom is a critical component of providing your students a Meaningful Watershed Educational Experience. Discover a wealth Chesapeake Bay related books, multimedia, curriculum guides, individual lesson plans and online data sources.

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Total Results: 16

A Salty Experiment Lesson

This experiment teaches students about how salt and fresh water in a typical estuary layer and mix. Though this activity was designed for the New Jersey Harbor Estuary Education Program, the properties it described are relevant for the Chesapeake Bay. Launch Resource

Topic(s): Water Quality Monitoring Hydrosphere
  • Subject(s): Science
  • Type(s): Lessons and Activities
  • Rating:

Chesapeake Exploration

NOAA's Chesapeake Exploration is a new and innovative collection of online activities for middle and high school students that brings the science of the Chesapeake Bay to life. Chesapeake Exploration gives teachers and their students unprecedented access to lessons designed around real-time observational data from the Chesapeake Bay Interpretive Buoy System. Inside a virtual classroom, Chesapeake Exploration guides students through an engaging investigative process that explores natural and human systems and cycles and the ways in which they interact throughout the Bay and its watershed. Teachers can create a unique online environment for their classrooms, including locking parameters such as date/time so all students use the same data sets and storing student answers online for easy grading. Using Chesapeake Exploration, students can (1) Query observational platforms throughout the Bay from their classroom or home; (2)Use National Geographic's Fieldscope to investigate the natural and human systems in the Bay's watershed and answer geospatial questions; and (3) Populate "dynamic worksheets" that ask them to think through scientific principles related to water quality and weather phenomena using current observation data. Launch Resource

Topic(s): Water Quality Monitoring Atmosphere Fish Wastewater and Stormwater
  • Subject(s): Mathematics, Science, Social Studies, Technology
  • Type(s): Data, Lessons and Activities, Posters and Maps
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Comparing Water Quality Data Lesson

Students will use a computer to access water qaulity data. They will then interpret graphs of water quality data measured at different times and locations. The will use graphs and a presentation to comminicate their conclusions. Launch Resource

Topic(s): Rivers and Streams Water Quality Monitoring
  • Subject(s): Language Arts, Mathematics, Science
  • Type(s): Data, Lessons and Activities
  • Aligned with the following standards: Virginia
  • Rating:

Estuarine Currents Lesson

During this lesson, students can observe a demonstration or conduct an experiment that models density-driven currents. Following completion of this lesson, the students will be able to relate water temperature and salinity to the formation of estuarine currents. Launch Resource

Topic(s): Hydrosphere Atmosphere
  • Subject(s): Science
  • Type(s): Lessons and Activities
  • Level(s): High School
  • Aligned with the following standards: New York
  • Rating:

Eyes on Salinity Lesson

This Eyes on the Bay lesson plan teaches students about the properties of salinity, how to build a hydrometer and use a map to determine salinity tolerance level of different bay species. Launch Resource

Topic(s): Water Quality Monitoring Bay Grasses Oysters Fish
  • Subject(s): Science, Technology
  • Type(s): Lessons and Activities
  • Level(s): Middle School
  • Aligned with the following standards: Maryland
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Eyes on the Bay Curriculum

These resources and lesson plans were developed to support science and environmental studies educators in integrating these topics within the regular curriculum when studying Maryland's Chesapeake Bay and Coastal Bays. The goal is to integrate student learning of science concepts with the use of technology and current scientific data. In this lesson series, the Eyes on the Bay website is used to gather information and interpret data. Each lesson can be used individually or as a complete package to teach water quality concepts. Educators may adapt any of the lessons to meet their specific needs. Lessons focus on salinity, dissolved oxygen, and harmful algal blooms and are aligned to Maryland Voluntary State Curriculum (Grades 6-8 & Grades 9-12). Launch Resource

Topic(s): Biosphere Nutrients Fish Water Quality Monitoring
  • Subject(s): Science
  • Type(s): Curriculum Guide, Data
  • Aligned with the following standards: Maryland
  • Rating:

NOAA Estuaries 101 Curriculum - Earth Science Module 2: Salinity and Tides in York River

In this activity, students learn about tides and salinity in estuaries. They observe time-lapse models of tides and salinity distribution in the York River, part of the Chesapeake Bay, VA NERR. Learn how salinity changes with an incoming and outgoing tide, observing the dynamics of the salt wedge at various sites along the river. Students also make predictions about the salinity changes at each site based upon their observations of the animation. They then use salinity data from monitoring stations along the river to see changes during a typical day. And, then describe the patterns of each salinity graph and compare the graphs. Launch Resource

Topic(s): Hydrosphere
  • Subject(s): Science
  • Type(s): Lessons and Activities
  • Level(s): High School
  • Rating:

NOAA Estuaries 101 Curriculum - Life Science Module 1: Survival in an Estuary

In this activity, students investigate the range of conditions that selected animal and plant species need tosurvive in an estuary. They examine data for abiotic factors that affect life in estuaries'salinity, dissolved oxygen, temperature, and pH. Students use archived data (trend analysis graphs) and real-time conditions at the Elkhorn Slough National Estuarine Research Reserve (NERR) to predict whether a particular animal or plant species could survive in an estuary. Launch Resource

Topic(s): Water Quality Monitoring Biosphere Hydrosphere
  • Subject(s): Mathematics, Science
  • Type(s): Lessons and Activities
  • Level(s): High School
  • Rating:

NOAA Lesson Plan: Hot, Cold, Fresh and Salty

This lesson plan was developed by NSTA master teacher Jerry D. Roth through NSTA's partnership with NOAA. This lesson aims to have student observe the effects of the layering of warm and cold water and water that is more or less saline than the normal. In this lesson, student will create saline solutions that mimic ocean salinity, are more saline than ocean water, and are less saline than ocean water, carefully pour different solutions into a basin that shows how the different solutions can model layering in the ocean, and observe that waters of different temperatures can layer according to their respective temperature, with hot water rising above colder water and that waters with different salinity will layer according to their respective salinity with more saline water being more dense than that of lower salinity. Launch Resource

Topic(s): Climate Water Quality Monitoring Hydrosphere
  • Subject(s): Science
  • Type(s): Curriculum Guide, Lessons and Activities
  • Rating:

Rain Machine (Solar Still) Experiment

Working in groups, students build simple solar stills filled with salt water and observe what happens when the stills are placed in the sun. The students then taste the water they have collected and discuss what has happened in their stills. Launch Resource

Topic(s): Wastewater and Stormwater Hydrosphere
  • Subject(s): Science
  • Type(s): Lessons and Activities
  • Level(s): Elementary School
  • Rating: