Purpose and Concepts

Life Cycle of the Pacific Salmon

Students are sensitive to environmental issues, such as energy conservation and recycling. They can learn to appreciate that life in the wild offers us models of recycling, too. The unique story of the migratory life of Pacific salmon offers an illustrative example for students to begin to understand the concepts of:

The purpose of this activity is to present the Pacific salmon story clearly in sequence, constructing circular life-cycle models that can be hung from the classroom ceiling. The optional work with maps is intended to orient students to the geographical relationships among the places in which Pacific salmon live at different life stages. Students can ponder their own dependency on their parents and the complete lack of contact between salmon and their parents. They can wonder at the power of the innate behavior that drives Pacific salmon to conquer overwhelming obstacles -- battling waterfalls, foraging bears, fish ladders on dams, and fishing nets -- to complete their life cycle.


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