CBNERR Resources

Teacher Resources - Nutrient Enrichment


Preparation Phase

The following resources are designed for educators to introduce students to the coming weeks as they work through the PLANS II program curriculum.

To track the progress of the students and for us to better manage the program, please administer a survey at the beginning (Pre-Survey) and end (Post-Survey) of the program. 

Student PRE-Survey
Please administer before the start of the program

Student POST-Survey
Please administer at the end of the program

Student Readings:

Introduction to the Plankton in the Chesapeake Bay

Understanding Nutrients

Teacher Resources:

Chesapeake Bay Nutrient Enrichment Teacher Guide (Preparation Part 1)

During this class the students will be evaluated to determine their current knowledge of nutrient enrichment and related Chesapeake Bay issues. Students will then be introduced to these topics by their teacher. Further, students will be introduced to PLANS and what their role will be in the program.

Overview of PLANS PowerPoint
Please introduce your students to the PLANS program via this PowerPoint. 

Lecture on Plankton and Nutrients in the Bay
This PowerPoint is full of great information and you are free to edit it as you see fit.

Collecting a Plankton Sample
Here are instructions on collecting a live plankton sample to view back in your classroom.

Culturing Algae
Here is a procedure for growing and maintaining algae for use in the model enrichment and soil extract experiments.

Viewing Plankton Teacher Guide (Preparation Part 2)

Students will be introduced to using microscopes and spend time viewing live organisms from a fresh plankton sample.

Observing a Plankton Sample
Please print this document for each student to complete while observing the plankton sample.

Plankton Identification Manual
Here you will find a manual to help you identify the different types of plankton found in the Bay.

Preparing Nutrient Solutions

Constructing a Light Box
Use these instructions to put your students to work and build their lightbox which they will use throughout the experiment.

Setting up the Model Enrichment Bioassay (Preparation Part 3)

This guide will prepare and introduce your students to the model enrichment lab experiment and will set up their bioassay. At this point, students will take their first observations of their test tubes. Note: students will spend 6‐8 days monitoring their experiment and making observations on the initial day, on the 4th and 8th day of the experiment.

Student Procedure Flip Chart
To aid your students further, we have prepared a flip chart with step-by-step instructions to carry out the experiments.

Model Enrichment Data Sheet

List of Materials Needed

Procedure to make a flocculant

Action Phase

During this class period you will take your students out into the schoolyard to collect soil samples for extraction of nutrients for the second enrichment experiment.

School Yard Field Trip
This guide will explain how to lead your students on a school yard field trip and begin preparations for their soil nutrient enrichment experiment.

For a video tutorial click here.

Reflection Phase

During this phase, students will wrap up their model enrichment experiment and begin their second enrichment experiment using the soil extracts.

Teacher Resources:

Taking Down the Model Enrichment Experiment (Reflection Part 1)

During this class period your students complete the Model Enrichment Experiment by filtering their samples and comparing the filters to the color comparator to semi-quantitatively determine the degree of algal growth. Soil extracts will then be used by students to set up the second enrichment bioassay and make initial observations of their tubes.

Model Enrichment Filter Paper Placement Sheet

For a video tutorial click here.

Taking Down the Soil Enrichment Experiment (Reflection Part 2)

During this class period your students complete the Soil Extract Experiment by filtering their samples and comparing the filters to the color comparator to semi-quantitatively determine the degree of algal growth. Students will compare their results from this experiment to the data collected from the first model enrichment experiment. Further, students will interpret their data in light of land-uses in the Patuxent watershed and recommend ways to reduce nutrient runoff.

Soil Extract Class Data Sheet

Soil Extract Filter Placement Sheet

Watershed and Land Use PowerPoint
Use this PowerPoint to drive home the issue of land use and nutrient enrichment. Feel free to edit this presentation.

Student Worksheet
This worksheet is designed to determine local nutrient runoff potential from a local watershed

FieldScope Activity
After students complete this activity, they will understand how their actions can affect the water quality of the Chesapeake Bay. Also, students will gain an appreciation for their local environment.