Interactive Lessons

Basking turtleThese lessons provide an essential link to enrich and reinforce the educational experience of the Bridging the Watershed program. You can find online activities to prepare for a visit to the parks, gain knowledge about parks and their natural resources, and learn more about our Potomac watershed.

Fish Identification is an interactive lesson that helps students identify fish commonly found in the tidal waters of the Potomac watershed (downstream of the Great Falls) using a dichotomous key.  Students will be introduced to fish anatomy vocabulary  and use body shape and other physical features to identify fish.

Macro-Invertebrate Identification is an interactive lesson that helps students identify benthic macroinvertebrates using key characteristics. It also emphasizes the special adaptations each has to its aquatic habitat and demonstrates how macroinvertebrates can be indicators of the health of the stream.

Plant Identification is an interactive online activity that helps students practice plant identification and classification using a dichotomous key. This activity uses a visual key based on leaf shapes, margins, and their arrangement on a stem. Students will be introduced to vocabulary needed to use a plant key in the field and learn about common invasive plants found in national parks in and around the nation’s capital.

Swim for Your Life: Fish Game is an interactive simulation game intended to appeal to students in middle and high school. During the game, virtual anadromous fish leave the open ocean each spring and travel into estuaries, coastal and freshwater rivers, and creeks to release their eggs. As the season moves into late summer and early fall, the juvenile fish leave the shelter of the upper estuary and begin a journey to the open ocean from which their parents came. During this trek, the fish encounter many perils, and not all of them will survive to reproductive maturity.

Watershed Glossary provides definitions and photos for key terminology.

Watershed Timeline covers major Potomac Watershed events dating back to the 1500s.

What is a Watershed? Beyond the definition