Beacon Lesson Plan Library

Have You Ever Seen a Sea Monkey?

Jo Ann Parsons


Students use stereo scopes to observe brine shrimp on a daily basis and make scientific drawings of the growth and development of this species. Students learn about Artemia franciscana from research at web sites and from their observations.


The student knows of the great diversity and interdependence of living things.


-Stereo Microscopes for your students
-Brine shrimp eggs (Purchased at an aquarium shop)
-Small aquarium
-Aquarium pump and hose
-Salt and water
-Petri dishes
-White computer paper
-Hole punch
-Colored pencils


1. Sign up for computer lab and print Lab Sketch instructions.
2. Sat. evening add brineshrimp eggs to salt water.
3. Bring eggs to school on Monday.
4. Set up Stereoscopes for students, bring materials.


1. On the last day of a week students are introduced to the project and go to the Computer lab for research.
2. On the following Sat. night, You must add container of Brine shrimp cysts to a quart of salt water. (follow instructions on package)
3. The hatchlings will be visible during the entire day Monday for students to view. Nauplius larva will be developing sete also. Students are to observe and draw a cysts, a hatchling and a nauplius larvae on the first viewing.
4. Each day thereafter, students collect specimens, observe and draw the development of the larvae.
5. Students continue this process until the brine shrimp reach adulthood and at that time they turn in a report on Brine Shrimp and include all lab sketches for a grade.

Students should be more familiar with use of the Stereo Microscope and a Compound Microscope using a well slide. Students become comfortable by repeated use of the microscopes for several days as they detail the development of the Brine Shrimp.


Students complete sketches according to directions and submit them along with a written report detailing what they have learned about the life cycle of Artemia. Students are also assessed informally by observing their use of equipment and care to describe details of their observations. Students need to include how the Artemia fits into the food chain as well as what makes this creature unique to its environment and physical structure.


Students design an experiment using their Brine Shrimp.

Web Links

Web supplement for Have You Ever Seen a Sea Monkey?

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