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Native Pathways to Education
Alaska Native Cultural Resources
Indigenous Knowledge Systems
Indigenous Education Worldwide

Curriculum Resources for the Alaskan Environment

Subject Areas: marine science, history, nayitgation, seamanship, language arts, photography, physical education

Timeline: two six-week summer sessions with each session divided into three two-week sessions: (a) orientation/classroom; (b) fresh water studies; and (c) offshore salt water collecting, sampling, seamanship, and diving

Grade Levels: first year-10th grade, second year-11th and 12th grades

Purpose: to develop appreciation and understanding of the sea and its resources; to prepare interested students for marine science careers


G. Searles
Summer Marine
Science Program


Square bullet Activities

  • Repeat a program conducted successfully in Point Hope:

    hire a director 

    hire outside instructors with a matching number of instructors from the village

    identify sea flora and fauna; learn scientific and indigenous names

    study methods of collection and cultural uses

    obtain a vessel for offshore equipment and handling; provide "hands-on" experience with scientific equipment 

    present students with problems to solve within set time frames

    investigate educational and vocational opportunities in marine science

    produce K-12 instructional material on orientation to biological and physical science

    the original project elicited high student interest and excellent community support; nonachievers turned into leaders and "accumulated outstanding records"

    the district dropped the project after its second year ("too costly"); it is advisable to modify the funding and administrative aspects of the original proposal so that it is not wholly dependent on administrative support.

Square bullet Resources

  • vessel (floating lab), scientific equipment, trained instructors, experience resource personnel
  • Sea Week curriculum materials, University of Alaska Fairbanks


  • Plan follow-up courses in seamanship, navigation, and advanced marine biology.


Village Map and Directory

Land Selection

Local Weather Station

Star Mapping

6" Newtonian Reflecting Telescope Construction

Planetarium Construction

Investigation of Snow Melting

Insulation Experiments: Cardboard Boxes/Snow-Fenced Houses

Durable, Energy-Efficient Homes

Practical Application of Alternative Energy System

Solar Energy Uses

Construction of School/Community Facilities

Bush Shop or How to Learn Carpentry Without Wood

Basic Home Maintenance

Snowmachine Maintenance

Glider Construction (Aviation Shop)

Subsistence Tool Construction

Operating a Trapline, Subsistence Trapline, or Subsistence Net

Survival Skills

Heritage Campout

Netting Fish Efficiently

Natural History

Study of a Food Resource

Effects of Diet on Mice or Rats

Medicinal Plants

Farming the Sea

Summer Marine Science Program

Vegetable Gardening

Greenhouse Construction and Gardening

Chicken Farming

Water Usage Study

Garbage Disposal

Village Dogs

Fire Safety



Go to University of AlaskaThe University of Alaska Fairbanks is an affirmative action/equal opportunity employer and educational institution and is a part of the University of Alaska system.


Alaska Native Knowledge Network
University of Alaska Fairbanks
PO Box 756730
Fairbanks  AK 99775-6730
Phone (907) 474.1902
Fax (907) 474.1957
Questions or comments?
Last modified August 17, 2006