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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Riverworks Discovery: Wheel House Log Book

The Hudson, Delaware, Susquehanna, Potomac, and James Rivers are some of the most important in the Mid-Atlantic region. These historic rivers contribute to our nation’s economy, history, and culture. This information and activity packet provides content on watersheds, early exploration of the region, the history of water travel and trade, and more.

Subject(s): Language Arts, Mathematics, Science, Social Studies
Type(s): Lessons and Activities
Level(s): Elementary School
Keywords: boats, canoes and kayaks, development, air pollution and fossil fuels, culture and watermen, John Smith and colonial times, litter, trash and recycling, Native American, restoration, transportation

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Oystering on the Chesapeake - Explorations 6 - 10

The Oystering on the Chesapeake Curriculum is series of multi-disciplinary lesson plans designed to introduce students in grades 4, 5, and 6 to the economic, environmental, and cultural significance of the oystering industry of the Chesapeake Bay. This includes explorations Oyster Wars, In the Can, Mystery of the Disappearing Oyster, Oyster Times, and It's About Time.

Subject(s): Science, Social Studies
Type(s): Curriculum Guide, Lessons and Activities
Level(s): Elementary School, Middle School
Aligned with the following standard(s): Maryland
Keywords: oyster, culture and watermen

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Oystering on the Chesapeake - Explorations 1 - 5

The Oystering on the Chesapeake Curriculum is series of multi-disciplinary lesson plans designed to introduce students in grades 4, 5, and 6 to the economic, environmental, and cultural significance of the oystering industry of the Chesapeake Bay. These explorations include On board a Skipjack, Dead Reckoning, Payday!, From Bay to Table, and A Day in the Life of an Oyster Packinghouse.

Subject(s): Science, Social Studies
Type(s): Curriculum Guide, Lessons and Activities
Level(s): Elementary School, Middle School
Aligned with the following standard(s): Maryland
Keywords: oyster, culture and watermen

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Maryland Project WET Training and Curriculum Guide

After completion of a six hour training, educators are given a free Project WET curriculum and activity guide packed with 91 hands-on activities that cross many disciplines in the study of water and water resources - chemistry and physics, life science, earth systems, natural resource management, history and culture. During the workshop educators learn how to incorporate local issues into the lessons. Perfect for 4-H Youth Development, Scouts, and other youth organizations as well, the goal of Project WET is to facilitate and promote the awareness, appreciation, knowledge, and stewardship of water resources through the development and dissemination of classroom ready teaching aids.

Subject(s): Art, Language Arts, Mathematics, Science, Social Studies, Technology
Type(s): Curriculum Guide
Level(s): Early Learning, Elementary School, Middle School, High School
Aligned with the following standard(s): Maryland
Keywords: pollution, watershed, biodiversity, culture and watermen, ecosystem and biomes, water quality, wildlife

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TEAM DNR

TEAM DNR is a volunteer program, organized by the Maryland Department of Natural Resources, that is dedicated to educating elementary and middle school students about the Chesapeake Bay and other natural resource issues in Maryland. TEAM DNR currently offers schools four different classroom programs and one outdoor program. Each program has pre and post visit activities to enhance the experience of your students. These programs are available upon request of the classroom teacher or school administrator.

Subject(s): Science, Social Studies
Type(s): Lessons and Activities
Level(s): Elementary School, Middle School
Aligned with the following standard(s): Maryland
Keywords: pollution, point source, non-point source, population growth, land use, watershed, oyster, culture and watermen, experiments and investigations, habitat and niche, predator prey relationships, restoration, stream study, water quality, water testing, wildlife, fish

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Captain John Smith's Map

Download a pdf of Captain John Smith's map of the Chesapeake Bay.

Subject(s): Science, Social Studies
Type(s): Posters and Maps
Level(s): High School
Keywords: culture and watermen, John Smith and colonial times, Native American

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Discover the Chesapeake

This portion of the Chesapeake Bay Program's website is one of the best Chesapeake Bay-related informational resources around. It features Bay 101 video clips, a Bay FAQ, a Bay glossary and provides information on the Bay ecosystem, history, and watershed. The website also includes one of the most comprehensive Field Guides to the Chesapeake Bay, completely available online!

Subject(s): Science, Social Studies
Type(s): Multimedia, Books and Publications
Level(s): Early Learning, Elementary School, Middle School, High School
Keywords: watershed, blue crab, development, biodiversity, culture and watermen, ecosystem and biomes, habitat and niche, John Smith and colonial times, restoration, water quality, wildlife, fish

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Wetlands Reading List Pre-Kindergarten through Grade 12

The Wetlands Reading List is an annotated list of printed material that will supplement lesson plans and provide students with suggestions for independent reading on wetlands. This is a great resource to help you find the wetlands book you are looking for!

Subject(s): Language Arts, Science, Social Studies
Type(s): Books and Publications
Level(s): Early Learning, Elementary School, Middle School, High School
Keywords: pollution, wetland, watershed, culture and watermen, John Smith and colonial times, restoration, wildlife

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Chewin' in the Chesapeake: Food Webs & the Chesapeake Bay

This activity guides users in developing a project that can be used to educate themselves and others on the effects of technological change (human-caused stress) and development on the food webs in the Chesapeake Bay.

Subject(s): Science
Type(s): Lessons and Activities, Multimedia
Level(s): Middle School, High School
Keywords: food web, culture and watermen, predator prey relationships, renewable resource, fish

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Going for Water Lesson

Students will compare the experience of hauling one's own water, as described in Robert Frost's poem Going for Water, to the modern convenience of electric plumbing. They will predict the amount of water a student uses in a day and the amount of time it would take to haul that volume by hand. Then measure the time to the nearest minute that it takes each student to carry the water 50 yards.

Subject(s): Language Arts, Mathematics, Science, Social Studies
Type(s): Lessons and Activities
Level(s): Elementary School, Middle School
Aligned with the following standard(s): Virginia
Keywords: culture and watermen, water and energy conservation

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Captain John Smith's Chesapeake Bay Lesson

Students will compare and contrast the Chesapeake bay of today verses the Chesapeake bay of John Smith's day. They will read excerpts from Smith's description of his exploration of the Bay and its rivers and analyze Smith's map of the Chesapeake.

Subject(s): Language Arts, Mathematics, Science, Social Studies
Type(s): Lessons and Activities
Level(s): Elementary School, Middle School
Aligned with the following standard(s): Virginia
Keywords: land use, watershed, culture and watermen, John Smith and colonial times

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How Do They Know That Lesson

Students explore the methods historians use to reconstruct the past by learning about forest succession and local history.

Subject(s): Science, Social Studies
Type(s): Lessons and Activities
Level(s): High School
Aligned with the following standard(s): Pennsylvania
Keywords: culture and watermen, forest, Native American

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Forest Forensics Lesson

Students will investigate the past use of local forests though the observation of disturbances, such as old iron furnaces. Students will look for clues of past forest use and explore how forests have been misused in the past. Students will reflect upon past and present uses of the forest and consider the concept of forest sustainability.

Subject(s): Science, Social Studies
Type(s): Lessons and Activities
Level(s): High School
Aligned with the following standard(s): Pennsylvania
Keywords: culture and watermen, experiments and investigations, forest

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Renewable Resources: Ancient Civilizations Lesson

Students will explore how ancient civilizations managed their resources.

Subject(s): Science, Social Studies
Type(s): Lessons and Activities
Level(s): Middle School
Keywords: culture and watermen, forest, Native American, renewable resource

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Management of Commercial Fisheries Lesson -- Part 3

Students research fisheries and proper management while developing research paper writing skills.

Subject(s): Language Arts, Science, Social Studies
Type(s): Lessons and Activities
Level(s): High School
Keywords: culture and watermen, fish

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Management of Commercial Fisheries Lesson -- Part 2

Students investigate the environmental impacts of past and present fisheries while considering sustainable management practices.

Subject(s): Science, Social Studies
Type(s): Lessons and Activities
Level(s): High School
Keywords: culture and watermen, fish

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Management of Commercial Fisheries Lesson - Part 1

Students explore the history and resource management of fisheries.

Subject(s): Science, Social Studies
Type(s): Lessons and Activities
Level(s): High School
Keywords: culture and watermen, fish

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The South Atlantic Coast and Piedmont Book

This literary field guide for kids and families features the region’s natural heritage, from Maryland to Florida, and from the coast to the foothills of the Appalachians. The book’s stories, poems, essays, and historical accounts were specifically chosen because they feature the region’s habitats, plants, critters and weather.

Subject(s): Language Arts, Science
Type(s): Books and Publications
Level(s): Early Learning, Elementary School, Middle School, High School
Keywords: culture and watermen, ecosystem and biomes, forest, habitat and niche, wildlife, fish

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The Bay's Decimated Oyster Population Graph

Bar graph showing the oyster harvest from the 1800's to 2000. See how disease and advancing in oyster harvesting techniques influences the oyster population

Subject(s): Mathematics, Science, Social Studies
Type(s): Multimedia, Data
Level(s): Elementary School, Middle School, High School
Keywords: oyster, culture and watermen

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Troubling Trends in Blue Crab Catches Graph

Graphs blue crab catch from the 1930's to 2000.

Subject(s): Mathematics, Science, Social Studies
Type(s): Multimedia, Data
Level(s): Elementary School, Middle School, High School
Keywords: blue crab, culture and watermen

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Line Graph of MD Oyster Harvests 1952 - 2007

This handout contains data and a line graph showing the oyster harvest from 1952-2008.

Subject(s): Mathematics, Science
Type(s): Multimedia, Data
Level(s): Elementary School, Middle School, High School
Keywords: oyster, culture and watermen

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Line Graph of MD Crab Harvests 1952 - 2007

This handout contains data and a line graph showing the blue crab harvest from 1952-2008.

Subject(s): Mathematics, Science
Type(s): Multimedia, Data
Level(s): Elementary School, Middle School, High School
Keywords: blue crab, culture and watermen

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Colonial Chesapeake Map

Sultana Projects' 20" x 30" educational poster, Sultana on the Colonial Chesapeake, details the schooner Sultana's exploits on the Chesapeake Bay between 1769 and 1771. These posters are available to classroom teachers free of charge. To obtain a copy, contact Chris Cerino at 410-778-5954 or ccerino@sultanaprojects.org.

Subject(s): Language Arts, Science, Social Studies
Type(s): Posters and Maps
Level(s): Elementary School, Middle School, High School
Keywords: culture and watermen, John Smith and colonial times

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Sultana's Chesapeake Bay Ecology Unit

This 67 page unit contains a variety of readings and creative classroom exercises that will help students better understand the ecology of North America's largest estuary. The unit can function as a stand alone curriculum as well as a pre-trip primer for students sailing on Sultana.

Subject(s): Science, Social Studies
Type(s): Curriculum Guide
Level(s): Elementary School, Middle School
Keywords: pollution, water cycle and movement, wetland, land use, watershed, blue crab, air pollution and fossil fuels, culture and watermen, ecosystem and biomes, habitat and niche, Native American, schoolyard habitat, water quality, wildlife

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Maryland Environmental Education ToolKit

This Environmental Education Toolkit provides grade-specific resources for PreK-8 teachers. The toolkit links you to lessons connected to Maryland State Standards. Topics cover a wide range of environmental subjects.

Subject(s): Language Arts, Mathematics, Science, Social Studies
Type(s): Curriculum Guide
Level(s): Early Learning, Elementary School, Middle School
Aligned with the following standard(s): Maryland
Keywords: pollution, water cycle and movement, climate change, population growth, wetland, land use, food web, watershed, agriculture, development, biodiversity, culture and watermen, ecosystem and biomes, experiments and investigations, habitat and niche, renewable resource, water quality, wildlife

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