Shark Science Resources

This page is intended as a general education shark resource guide compiled from a variety of sources.

Shark Videos:

Shark Stewards and National Geographic Educator Mikayla Logan on Sharks

Shark Tagging

Shark Research

Environmental Economics of Sharks

Kid and shark
Youth learning about shark anatomy

Student Activities

Economics of Shark Tourism

Students have a class discussion around the question, “How much is a living shark left in the ocean worth? Compared to a shark sold for fin?” Students chat a bit, then are introduced to this study out of Palau.

This leads to an in-depth discussion of environmental economics and placing a value on ecosystem services, as well as a price on the costs of pollution, or the cost of removing sharks. Next, students watch this short film Students also watch clips from the Cousteau shark movie with the great whites and talked about the limitations of putting a value on everything.

(contributed by Gillian Ashenfelter, Lick-Wilmerding High School, San Francisco, CA).

Ampullae of Lorenzini simulation 

(contributed by Amanda Stoltz): Stick a magnet to a plastic hammerhead shark toy and put its prey (ideally little plastic rays with magnets glued on) under some sand in a box. Then kids can get an idea of how sharks sense their prey through using their ampullae of Lorenzini.

Buoyancy experiment

 (Contributed by Fernanda Almanza, Marine Awareness & Conservation Society, University of Arizona). Use water bottles and a large clear food service container. We fill one water bottle with just water, one with just oil, one with both and one “filled with air.” Then have students guess where they will end up in the container. This is good for a general swim bladder vs. oily liver.

Shark Research Project (contributed by Lisa Leonard, Vance Middle School, TN): I have a whole unit I do at the end of the year that I call Shark Week(s).  It lasts about two weeks.  One of the big components is a shark research project.  Each student is assigned a different shark (they have no choice, otherwise I’d get 50% of them on the great white!)  They complete a research template and compile it into a digital presentation (Prezi, Google slides, etc) and present it to the class, playing the role of a famous shark researcher.

Shark & Whale Sizes

 (contributed by Shannon Ricles) Create cards for different shark and whale species, with an image of the animal on one size and facts/interesting info on the back. Cards were laminated and a hole punched into one end. Cut a string the length of the adult whale or shark and tie it to the card, then wrap the string around the card and secure with paperclip. Kids could take them into the hall or outside to compare/contrast the different types of whales/sharks. For the images, an outline of the animal (like coloring book style) can be important to children’s cognitive learning. Modification for this activity (contributed by Tiffany Barber): roll ribbon on rolling pins and then kids can see how long those actually sharks are. You can also add measurements of prey on same ribbon, different sizes in baby, female and male.  


Marine Conservation Science & Policy Curriculum, University of Miami (contributed by Josh Coco): 

Reef Relief’s Shark presentation (contributed by Dora DeMaria) 

This is a PDF of the PowerPoint that Reef Relief uses for students. During the lesson you will see a part where particular species have a slide with a picture of their jaw. I have students brainstorm what they think that species would eat based on their jaw/teeth size. At the end I have three different shark jaws (Mako, Lemon, Bull) and play a guessing game with students.

Shark images from National Marine Sanctuaries: Students can access this Flickr account to download high resolution, public domain photos for reports and science fair projects.  Link


Virtual Shark Lessons (contributed by Jason Robertshaw at Mote Marine Laboratory),MOTE SeaTrek.TV: please note that many of these programs are fee-based.