Teacher resources

Teacher Newsletter

Submit your email address, selecting "educator newsletter", to get links to more resources, fun animal facts and the latest news on educational programming at the Seattle Aquarium.

Teacher Workshops

Please check back soon for information on future workshop sessions. 

Resources for use at the Seattle Aquarium

Explore the tide pools! (kindergarten-grade 2):

Explore the tide pools! activity

Come explore our touch pools with your K-2nd graders!

This guide will allow your students to feel more connected to our marine environment while learning about tide pool animals.

Students will feel more empathy for the marine environment by increasing their knowledge about the role of plankton in a Puget Sound food web, observing, identifying and touching live animals and using their creativity to design their very own plankton.

This guide supports:

  • Empathy Best Practices: Provide Experiences, Modeling, Framing and Increase Knowledge.
  • Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS): Practice: Planning and Carrying Out Investigations, Crosscutting Concept: Structure and Function, Disciplinary Core Ideas: K-ESS3.C: Human Impact on Earth Systems, 1-LS1.A: Structure and Function and 2-LS4.D: Biodiversity and Humans.
  • Ocean Literacy Principles (OLP): OLP1, OLP5 & OLP6.


Seattle Aquarium field guide:

This color photo guide includes animals commonly seen on Puget Sound beaches and here at the Aquarium. Available in the following languages:


Beach etiquette tips:



Seattle Aquarium social story:

This social story, or visual guide, will help families and groups prepare for their visit to the Aquarium. May be especially useful for visitors with autism or sensory sensitivities, or younger audiences. Look through it before your visit, or print it out to bring with you.

Seattle Aquarium Social Story


Science standards:

Programs for kindergarten through grade 12 are designed to support Washington state science standards, including EALRs and NGSS/WSSLS. Please click here for classroom program standards.


Teacher planning pass:

After you have received your field trip confirmation email, you may request a one-time teacher planning pass from our registrar. We encourage you to visit the Aquarium before your field trip to help with your planning process. The planning pass will be available to pick up at the admission gate with your school ID.

Resources for use in your classroom

Web of Life (grades 2 and up):

Learn how different organisms are connected through an engaging activity focusing on a sea otter food web.
Web of Life activity


Build a Shell & Shell Dissolving (grades 4 and up):

Learn how changing ocean chemistry can negatively affect ocean invertebrates through a hands-on activity and an experiment.
Build a shell activity

Shell dissolving activity


Puget Sound cetacean information:

Puget Sound orca information

Cetacean fact sheet


Solar power at the Seattle Aquarium

In partnership with Seattle City Light, the Seattle Aquarium installed a 49-kilowatt-hour photovoltaic array on the roof of Pier 59. The array generates electricity for Seattle City Light’s second Community Solar project. To view live readings of how much power the project is generating at the Seattle Aquarium and to learn more about solar power, click here.


Plankton Activities (grades 9 and up):

Learn all about plankton through a hands-on lab activity, exciting math exercises, a fun writing assignment and a creative challenge. To obtain a plankton sample for use in your classroom please email registration at least one week in advance of your required use date. Please note: plankton samples must be picked up in person and cannot be shipped.
Plankton lab

Plankton identification guide

Phytoplankton biomass

Sinking slowly activity


Food Pyramid Activity (grades 9 and up)

Dive deep into a marine themed food pyramid and learn all about energy transfer via fun math exercises.
Whale food pyramid activity


Sea Star Activities:

Learn all about how sea star populations are being affected by sea star wasting disease (SSWD) with fun games and a data collection activity. 
Counting sea stars (3rd-5th grade)

Infection detection (3rd-6th grade)

Sea star fact sheets


Partnership programs:

The Seattle Aquarium partners with several schools in the Puget Sound area. Our partner schools help us test pilot programs, get feedback on new ideas, and provide more in-depth programming that can be jointly delivered by Aquarium staff and classroom teachers.


General information:

Contact us at education@seattleaquarium.org with questions.


Ocean literacy principles:

The ocean is the defining feature of our planet. Ocean literacy means understanding the ocean’s influence on you and your influence on the ocean. There are seven principles of ocean literacy—ideas scientists and educators agree everyone should understand about the ocean.


Infographic library: 

View our library of infographics here


Planning a trip to the beach?

Beach guidelines for school groups.