Teacher Resources

Make your field trip a learning expedition by using the following downloadable educational materials.

Aqua Guide

This guide is designed to help prepare your class for their field trip and help you lead your group as they explore the exhibits in the Aquarium. 


Turn your field trip to the Aquarium into a scavenger hunt!  Not only will AquaQuest enhance your students’ learning experience, but they will have fun discovering all the answers. Choose the appropriate grade level below and print a copy of the pdf.  Please keep in mind, writing against the exhibits or graphic panels may scratch the acrylic so please provide each student with something to write on such as a notebook or clipboard and a pencil.

AquaQuest Pre K - K Pre K - K AquaQuest Answers
1st - 2nd AquaQuest 1st - 2nd AquaQuest Answers
3rd - 5th AquaQuest 3rd - 5th AquaQuest Answers
6th - 8th AquaQuest 6th - 8th AquaQuest Answers
9th - 12th AquaQuest 9th - 12th AquaQuest Answers

Penguin Pre & Post Quiz

10 Reasons Penguins Rock!
Have your students answer these 10 questions before and after their visit to the Penguins' Rock exhibit in our Ocean Journey building.  This is a great way to find out what they learn during their visit and a good way to offer some extra credit points!  There is no answer key to this quiz; the answers are all numbered in the exhibit.

Dichotomous Keys and Food Web Activities

This food web will help you understand the diverse and complicated world of the Delta Swamp in River Journey.

Teacher Student
Delta Swamp Web of Life Delta Swamp Web of Life Instructions
Delta Swamp Web of Life Answers Delta Swamp Web of Life

These dichotomous keys will help you identify the fish in the Gulf of Mexico and Nickajack Lake exhibits in River Journey and the Secret Reef exhibit in Ocean Journey.  Use the blank dichotomous key to make your own.

Nickajack Dichotomous Key
Secret Reef Dichotomous Key
River Giants Dichotomous Key
Blank Dichotomous Key

Sensory Bags

Educational supplements are available for visually impaired guests. Each sensory bag consists of a duffel bag (one for Ocean Journey and one for River Journey) which has hands-on props and printed information for dictation. If someone in your group would like to use the sensory bag during their visit, please check with a Guest Services Associate when you arrive.

The Ocean we want to know

One World One Ocean's new animated video celebrates the wonders of the ocean with stunning facts about our connection to the planet's lifeline. Print the infographic fact sheet to use with the video. 

Measuring Runoff

Find out how much rain falls in a given area using one of these student work sheets for measuring runoff: 

Measuring Runoff - Rain, Rain, Goes Away!

Measuring Runoff in Tons

Ocean Literacy Essential Principles

This guide presents a vision of an ocean-literate society. A practical resource for educators, it outlines the knowledge required to be considered ocean literate in accordance with the National Science Education Standards (NSES). These standards were designed to “guide our nation toward a scientifically literate society” [National Academy of Sciences (NAS), 1996.] and provide criteria to judge progress toward a national vision of science literacy. Click here to open a pdf of the Ocean Literacy Essential Principles brochure.

IMAX Movies & Educator Guides

Our exciting IMAX movies offer students an additional learning experience. Click here to see current film schedules. You’ll find a link to the right of the movie poster that takes you to the Educator’s Resource Guide for each film which contains background information and classroom activities. 
PLEASE NOTE: During much of the school year, IMAX has a 10am Teacher’s Choice available Monday through Friday. The first group to reserve a minimum of 100 students for this show time, can choose a current film or a past film such as Flight of the Butterflies 3D, Great White Shark 3D, Born to be Wild 3D, To the Arctic 3D, Rocky Mountain Express 2D or Penguins 3D. When you call to make your group reservation, be sure to ask about this option.

River Gorge Explorer Water Quality Monitoring

The Tennessee Aquarium monitors the health of the Tennessee River with the help of a sonde – a device that records characteristics of the water at regular intervals. Learn more about the Tennessee River water quality results why it matters to all of us.

woman holding small jellyfish in jar

Backstage Pass

Get VIP access to get up-close, feed, and touch Aquarium animals.

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diver with a sea turtle


Find all kinds of behind-the-scenes pictures and information about your favorite aquatic getaway located in the heart of downtown.

Tennessee Aquarium gift shop

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Fun, cool and cuddly plush animals, jewelry, books, toys, gifts and much more! Browse our online store for great gifts.

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