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Classroom Resources

Cinema Bayville

Teacher's Guide

Tips for Teachers


Step By Step through the Interactive

Cinema Bayville is a movie player. It allows students to select and view Bay-related video clips to watch. The clips are organized into these categories:

  • Features are especially important stories about the Bay. Through an engaging storyline, they echo the key themes of this site, presenting an overview of the issues students will examine as they work through the interactives on the site. These clips are also included in other categories of Cinema Bayville clips.
  • Creatures and Critters includes video clips about the plant and animal life in the Chesapeake Bay. It includes two stories about invasive species.
  • People and Places includes clips about the geography of the Chesapeake Bay watershed, the cultural life in a few towns on the Bay, and the work of watermen who make their living on the Bay. Many of these clips discuss the present socio-economic challenges that watermen face.
  • Past, Present, and Future presents video clips about the history of the Bay and the environmental challenges that currently plague it.

Because we know the vocabulary of science can be challenging, we have highlighted many words throughout this interactive. By clicking on words in red, students can read a definition of the term.

Each movie title includes a description and a running length time.

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Teacher Tips:  Before Using the Interactive

Review the interactive on your own, prior to introducing it to the group. You may want to consider questions such as:

  • Should students view the movie clips independently, in small groups, or as a class?
  • Do you want to use Cinema Bayville as a stand-alone interactive, or as a supplement to other interactives?
    • Would any movie clips be useful for introducing another interactive?
    • Would any movie clips be useful as extensions after completing another interactive

The following chart shows which movie clips in Cinema Bayville relate thematically to other interactives. You can use this chart to help determine how to best use each clip.

Meal Deal
H2Oh No!
Here There
Be Monsters
In Green Obscurity        
Root of It All        
The Bay Beautiful          
Hope at the Edge, Part 3          
The Bay’s Muddy History          
Creatures and Critters
In Green Obscurity        
Invasive Beauties      
King Neptune’s Steed          
Moth Mayhem        
On the Diamondback Track          
Oyster S.O.S.        
Root of It All        
Water Flows, Water Woes        
People and Places
The Bay Beautiful          
Hope at the Edge, Part 1          
Hope at the Edge, Part 2          
Hope at the Edge, Part 3          
Hope at the Edge, Part 4          
Last Stand at Shady Side          
Legacy on Winter’s Bay, Part 1          
Legacy on Winter’s Bay, Part 2        
Past, Present, and Future
The Bay’s Muddy History          
Chesapeake Past, Chesapeake Future, Part 1        
Chesapeake Past, Chesapeake Future, Part 2          
Chesapeake Past, Chesapeake Future, Part 3        
Chesapeake Past, Chesapeake Future, Part 4        
Chesapeake Past, Chesapeake Future, Part 5      
How the Bay Came to Be          
Treasures of Calvert Cliffs          


All clips in Cinema Bayville are excerpted from longer pieces. The clips designated as features are slightly longer than the others and have more of a complete storyline.

A glossary of terms used in the interactive is included in this teacher guide. However, unfamiliar terms that are used in the actual video clips are NOT included in this glossary. You may want to review the video clip transcripts to make note of any words in the videos that may be unfamiliar to your students. Introduce these terms to them before viewing the videos.

A description and running length of each movie clip follows. Students can view movie descriptions in the interactive. Their descriptions are more “kid-friendly” than those provided in this guide. Complete transcripts of the movie clips are available by following the links provided.

Creatures and Critters

  • In Green Obscurity (3:02) (also in Features)
    Discusses what underwater grasses are, what has been causing their rapid decline, and how scientists are helping them come back.
    See transcript
  • Invasive Beauties (1:10)
    Follows two scientists who discuss the historical presence of mute swans in the Bay and the problems that are resulting from the swans’ consumption of endangered Bay grasses.
    See transcript
  • King Neptune’s Steed (1:49)
    Discusses the peculiar characteristics and elusive nature of the Lined Seahorse.
    See transcript
  • Moth Mayhem (3:11) 
    Discusses how gypsy moths have not only destroyed huge patches of forest, but are also contributing to the excessive nutrient load in the Chesapeake, due to their droppings.
    See transcript
  • On the Diamondback Track  (4:10)
    Shows both scientists and concerned Maryland residents who are trying to learn more about Diamondback Terrapins and protect the turtles from death and habitat destruction.
    See transcript
  • Oyster S.O.S. (3:09)
    Discusses the oyster crisis in the Chesapeake Bay, and more specifically the two diseases that are responsible for much of the oyster loss. Students hear from scientists who discuss why the loss of oysters is bad and who talk about the research they’re doing to save the oysters.
    See transcript
  • Root of it All (2:56) (also in Features)
    Shows the devastation in the wetlands caused by South American nutria, an invasive species. Discusses the history of nutria in the region and why the destruction that they’ve caused has such deeply-felt repercussions.
    See transcript
  • Water Flows, Water Woes (2-3:00)
    Briefly describes the water cycle, with an emphasis on how things that humans do in our everyday lives impact the cycle.
    See transcript

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People and Places

  • The Bay Beautiful (2:30)  (also in Features)
    A collage showing the diversity of landscapes in the Chesapeake Bay watershed. Gives some basic information and “fun facts” about the Bay, its creatures, history, and future.
    See transcript
  • Hope at the Edge
    A story of a small island off the Eastern Shore of Maryland, whose history and traditions have been shaped almost entirely by the Bay’s bounty, but whose future is uncertain. Four short segments of the longer story are offered here.
    • Part 1 (1:53)
      Describes Smith Island, and emphasizes the uncertainty of the future of island. See transcript
    • Part 2 (2:13)
      Describes the very traditional life on Smith Island. See transcript
    • Part 3 (5:38)  (also in Features)
      Follows one Smith Islander who has just returned from the Marines, and shows the hardships that he faces as he tries to make a living off of the water. The segment places his struggles within the larger context of life on the island and shows how the population is dwindling because of economic, natural, and social changes. See transcript
    • Part 4 (2:23)
      A continuation of the theme of uncertainty, with watermen wondering if they should encourage their grandchildren to continue the tradition or try something new. See transcript
  • Last Stand at Shady Side (4:20)
    A discussion of the conflicts between tradition and change in the town of Shady Side, Maryland. As a former watermen’s town experiences economic, cultural, and demographic shifts, residents talk about some of the changes. See transcript
  • Legacy on Winter’s Bay
    A story about the work of J. R. Gross, an oysterman in Shady Side, Maryland. This video is divided into two sections.
    • Part 1 (3:34)
      Introduces Mr. Gross and talks about his work within the context of his family’s history. The Gross family has been working the water for generations. See transcript
    • Part 2 (4:20)
      Shows the process of oystering in more detail, discusses the politics involved with oystering, and talks about the challenges that oystermen presently face due to a declining oyster population. See transcript

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Past, Present, and Future

  • The Bay’s Muddy History (2:40) (also in Features)
    Follows a scientist from the U.S. Geological Survey who collects core samples of Bay mud in order to learn about the natural history of the area. He explains and shows how he “reads” the core samples for historical clues.
    See transcript
  • Chesapeake Past, Chesapeake Future
    A look at the changes the Chesapeake Bay has undergone since first being settled by early Americans. This video is segmented into five short parts.
    • Part 1 (1:25)
      Describes the early Chesapeake landscape and alludes to the fact that population increase and settlement have caused a lot of the destruction in the Bay. See transcript
    • Part 2 (0:34)
      Briefly describes the high levels of sediment in the Bay’s waters. See transcript
    • Part 3 (1:01)
      Introduces the idea that the Bay is a series of connected waterways, so that when one tributary is polluted, it impacts the whole Bay. See transcript
    • Part 4 (0:53)
      Shows the work that farmers are doing to help stop excess nitrogen and phosphorus from entering the Bay. See transcript
    • Part 5 (1:22)
      Discusses the relationship between excess nitrogen and phosphorus in the Bay and the destruction of sea grasses. Shows scientists who collect core samples to determine the nutrient levels. See transcript
  • How the Bay Came to Be (0:27)
    A very brief description of how the Bay was formed.
    See transcript
  • Treasures of Calvert Cliffs (3:00)
    A paleontologist in the Calvert Cliffs in Maryland discusses how each fossil is different and how they help scientists piece together information about ancient life in the Bay watershed.
    See transcript

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Teacher Tips: During the Interactive

To find a graphic organizer that can help your students take notes and process movie content, visit Thinkport’s graphic organizers page. There are many different kinds of organizer templates to choose from.

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Teacher Tips:  After Using the Interactive

The movie clips can be used to introduce another interactive, or they can serve as starting points for further research and discussion after completing an interactive. For example:

  • The interactive story, Here There Be Monsters, explores the legend of Chessie, a sea monster rumored to live in the Chesapeake Bay. One of the paths of the story allows students to learn about Maryland’s struggling seafood industry. The story mentions the decline in finfish and shellfish landings, and how this is impacting Maryland’s economy. This same subject is dealt with very poignantly in many of the video clips in the People and Places . These clips offer a human side of the story and can be great discussion starters to further explore concepts of economy, natural resources, and dying traditions.

Use the video clips as starting points for creative writing exercises. Students can create stories about a day in the life of a nutria in the marsh, or a waterman on his workboat, for example. They should use factual information offered in the videos or from other Bayville interactives or prior knowledge to help develop their characters and plot lines. Thinkport offers graphic organizers for general story and character development.

Watching movies can be a great impetus for students to write their own movies. Creating public service announcements, or PSAs, is a good writing exercise for young people. Students can create PSAs about the importance of picking up their pets’ waste or encouraging their classmates to carpool, for instance. For more PSA ideas, you can look at the survey in the Chesapeake Champs interactive. If your school has access to a digital video camera and a computer editing system (like iMovie), students’ PSAs can even be recorded and edited.

An “edit script” graphic organizer is provided to help students write their PSAs. An edit script is what filmmakers use to guide their shots. It has one column for video (what we see) and one column for audio (what we hear as we’re seeing whatever is in the video column). An example of a completed edit script is provided.

Students can also use a storyboard to create their PSAs. The storyboard is similar to the edit script, except rather than writing what we see, students can draw it in the video box. A storyboard graphic organizer is provided. It is a PDF file.

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