Classroom Aquaponics

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Assembly required:
Please see assembly instructions in description below.
Classroom Aquaponics

Grades K-8 (Kit)

Investigate the basic needs of plants and fish and discover how plants, animals, and bacteria interact in a symbiotic system by assembling, maintaining, and observing a small-scale aquaponics system. 

Assembly required! 

Included Materials:

  • 12-14 quart clear storage tub (approximately 17”L x 12”W x 6”D)
  • 20-24 quart clear storage tub with lid (approximately 17”L x 12”W x 10”D)
  • Swamp Cooler Overflow Drain Kit (1/2” MPT threaded overflow pipe with hex head, Rubber washer, 3/4” nylon nut, Nylon drain with 3/4” garden hose threads on outside and 1/2” FPT threads on inside)
  • 40-90 gal/hr submersible fountain pump
  • Flexible tubing (to fit the submersible fountain pump discharge opening)
  • Plastic jar
  • Expanded clay pellets, 10 quarts
  • Brooder clamp light
  • LED light bulb
  • Timer (for the light)
  • Ammonium chloride
  • Freshwater aquarium water test kit that measures pH, ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate
  • Aquarium thermometer
  • Fish food (goldfish flakes)
  • Aquarium fish net
  • Aquarium fish cave
  • Classroom Aquaponics System Assembly and Maintenance Guide

Materials to Gather (not included):

  • Measuring tape
  • Drill or drill press
  • 1” spade drill bit
  • 3/4” spade drill bit
  • De-chlorinated water, approximately 15 quarts (see De-chlorination Procedure on page 9 of Classroom Aquaponics System Assembly and Maintenance Guide)
  • Goldfish, 5-7 adult fish
  • 5 small seedling plants (basil or other small herbs, lettuces, or any other small plant that tolerates wet soil well)
  • Tap water conditioner (optional)  

Consider replacing the timer included in this kit with an Arduino Controlled Relay.

Use the Classroom Aquaponics kit with the lesson plan Exploring Aquaponics.

Additional lesson plans associated with this kits can be found on the National Agricultural Literacy Curriculum Matrix.

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  • 4

    Posted by Bridget Roderick on Mar 13th 2023

    This set up is great for introducing aquaponics in the classroom. My students love it! The only problems I had was the top container that came with the kit broke as I was drilling my hole and I had to buy a tougher, sturdier brand (which worked a lot better). A suggestion I would have is to predrilled the holes or use a sturdier brand for the tubs.
    I would definitely recommend this to others and have more than 1 set up in my classroom.