SITC Curriculum Resources


Browse our collection of salmon curriculum resources! Discover the materials our teachers use to promote inquiry, NGSS learning, and a sense of stewardship among students. Don’t see your favorite salmon activity posted here? Share your ideas with the SITC coordinator at


Printable Signs

Want to encourage student engagement with your salmon tank across multiple grade levels?  Turn your salmon tank into a display that promotes inquiry and supports NGSS learning.

Posting simple questions on and near your salmon tank can generate excitement about your fish.  Whether you focus on inquiry throughout the year, or just want to engage students as they walk past the salmon tank, here's one example of how Crestline teachers invite inquiry at the tank.  You can download these small or large life cycle photos to display near your tank.

What do salmon need from their habitat to survive?  What equipment fills that need in the tank?  The chiller keeps water cold for salmon in the tank, but how does nature keep stream water cold?  Use the Tank vs Stream worksheet to guide discussions about salmon habitat before your salmon arrive, and again when they're ready to be released into the stream!  Print these Salmon Tank Model Ecosystem signs to put on and IN your tank that highlight different components of your model salmon habitat.     

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Recommended Teacher Activities

Our program has over 50 salmon tanks in Clark County Schools, from kindergarten to college level.  Each teacher uses the salmon tank in slightly different ways.  The following activities have been tested or recommended by our SITC teacher participants.

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Predict the Hatch Date


Did you know a salmon's hatch date is determined by temperature? Predict the hatch date of your eggs with this Countdown to Hatching lesson about Thermal Units. Includes student worksheet from Meredith Gannon at Sacajawea and prediction calendar from Jayne Salisbury at Pioneer Elementary.  


Track Salmon Growth


How does a fish hatchery know how much to feed the fish?  How much food do your salmon need each day?  And when should you give your salmon bigger sized food pellets?  The Need for Feed lesson will help you answer all these questions (and keep your salmon's bellies full!). 


Calculate Survival by Life Cycle Stage


Perhaps your students already know the salmon life cycle stages by name: egg, alvein, fry, fingerling, smolt, adult, spawner. But which life cycle stage is the most fragile?  How are salmon threats different for wild salmon vs those raised in a hatchery or tank environment? Get out your camera and your calculator for this Salmon Survival Rate lesson. Includes Helps and Hazards worksheet from Mike Clapp at CAM Academy. 


Explore Chemical Cycles in Your Tank


It's a natural fact that all animals produce waste... but how does that affect the water quality in your "closed" model ecosystem in the salmon tank?  Explore the chemical changes that occur in your tank using this Nitrogen Cycle Lesson and learn about the importance of water quality in a "closed" system.  Includes chemical water testing worksheets, removing nitrates with floating aquaponics, and more!

Materials Available for Check-out

Have your students ever seen the rings on a salmon scale?  Do they know what a salmon’s “ear-stone” looks like?  Or how coded wire tags are used?  Check out the "Salmon Trunk" for teaching resources you can’t download. Current teacher participants can borrow any of the following educational materials from Columbia Springs by contacting the SITC Coordinator at  Additional materials may be available for check-out!


Salmon Curriculum Packets

The Hero's Journey is a curriculum packet developed by Columbia Springs.  Teachers in the Pacific Northwest have been raising salmon in schools for decades, and many dedicated professionals from other organizations have also developed curriculum to support students in this endeavor.  Click on the document icons below to download any of these salmon curriculum packets.

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