Information for Teachers

Curriculum links

This investigation is linked to the following Grade 5 Next Generation Science Standards.

PS3.D: Energy in Chemical Processes and Everyday Life

The energy released [from] food was once energy from the sun that was captured by plants in the chemical process that forms plant matter (from air and water). (5-PS3-1)

LS1.C: Organization for Matter and Energy Flow in Organisms

Food provides animals with the materials they need for body repair and growth and the energy they need to maintain body warmth and for motion. (secondary to 5-PS3-1)

LS2.A: Interdependent Relationships in Ecosystems

The food of almost any kind of animal can be traced back to plants. Organisms are related in food webs in which some animals eat plants for food and other animals eat the animals that eat plants. Some organisms, such as fungi and bacteria, break down dead organisms (both plants or plants parts and animals) and therefore operate as “decomposers.” Decomposition eventually restores (recycles) some materials back to the soil. Organisms can survive only in environments in which their particular needs are met. A healthy ecosystem is one in which multiple species of different types are each able to meet their needs in a relatively stable web of life. Newly introduced species can damage the balance of an ecosystem. (5-LS2-1)

LS2.B: Cycles of Matter and Energy Transfer in Ecosystems

Matter cycles between the air and soil and among plants, animals, and microbes as these organisms live and die. Organisms obtain gases, and water, from the environment, and release waste matter (gas, liquid, or solid) back into the environment. (5-LS2-1)

ESS3.C: Human Impacts on Earth Systems

Human activities in agriculture, industry, and everyday life have had major effects on the land, vegetation, streams, ocean, air, and even outer space. But individuals and communities are doing things to help protect Earth’s resources.

How to search the internet

1 Keep your request short

Fewer words will give a more accurate search.

2 Choose exactly what you want

For example: Arctic Circle Climate

3 Use quotes

Double quotes around a set of words tell the search engine to consider those exact words in that exact order without any change. For example: “Arctic Circle Climate”

4 Use the plus sign (+)

If you add a plus sign (+) between words, the internet will search for all the words. For example: migrate+birds+whales+mammal

5 Use the minus sign (–) to say what you don’t want

Use a minus sign (–) to show words you do not want to appear in your results. For example: if you search for burrowing animals and do not want mammals in your search,  –mammals will exclude mammals. Note that you need to put a space before the minus sign for the word to be excluded.

6 Be very clear about what you don’t want

Part 1
Ask questions and define problems

After reading The Salmon Stream, you may have many questions about the relationship between different species of animals.

List your questions.

  • Compare your list with questions that others have.
  • Choose a question you would like to investigate.
  • You can work alone, with a partner, or in a small group.

You may want to choose one or more of these questions to investigate

Q1. Investigate other species of animals that have very different life cycles that come together at specific times during a year.

Q2. Salmon lay a huge number of eggs in an extremely difficult place to spawn. Why do they do that? What other species have a life cycle that is similar to this?

Q3. Investigate the ways in which climate change may affect the grizzly bear.

Go to Part 2 Investigate →

Part 2

Helpful websites

You may want to use websites to help you’re your investigations.

Use search words such as:




Go to Part 3 Record data →

Part 3
Record data

Find a way of recording your information that will allow you to see any patterns in the data.

Data Chart for comparing the lives of animals
(Download and change to suit your information)

Download Chart
Go to Part 4 Organize, analyze, and interpret data →

Part 4
Organize, analyze, and interpret data

1.  Look over the information you have gathered and the patterns you have found.

What brings the life cycles of your animals together?

Why does this happen and are both animals better off for this?

2. Search for other patterns.

What do these patterns tell you about life cycles? Why? What might happen in the future? Do you think that climate change will affect these animals? Why?

3. Make notes about what you find.

Go to Part 5 Present and share →

Part 5
Present and share

Look over all of the information that you have gathered in your investigation.

What are the most important ideas about your topic?

Make a chart showing the most important ideas.

Download Chart
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