Aquariums are full of fascinating and beautiful creatures that we rarely get to see in the wild, making them ideal places to bring science to life.
Do you supplement your animal science curriculum with trips to an aquarium?
During the year that we studied marine animals, we made regular visits to The Seas at Epcot, which happens to be our local aquarium.
Each month, we went to see the particular creatures we had just learned about. It was a tangible way to move our science curriculum beyond the textbook.
To further tie in our lessons, I often gave the kids something specific to do while they were there, like a scavenger hunt or questions to answer.
Many aquariums offer additional resources such as:
- Daily Programs
During your visit, check to see if there are any daily programs being offered that can teach you more about the animals that live there. This is a great way to supplement your studies that requires no extra planning for you.
- Interactive Exhibits
Check out exhibits like touch tanks and animal feeding opportunities.
- Science Classes
Many aquariums offer in-depth science classes for students, some even taught by marine biologists.
- Knowledgeable Staff
At the very least, during your visit, seek out the staff to talk to your kids and answer their questions. They LOVE to share their knowledge with interested and engaged children.
Since all aquariums are unique, we try to check out local ones when we travel.
It was during a visit to the aquarium in Dallas, TX that a staff member created a very special moment for our family.
They have Pipa pipas as part of their collection and this sea creature fascinates my children. We had seen it in pictures, but they desperately wanted to see one in person.
After searching everywhere, we finally stopped an employee to ask where we could find it. She told us that they were currently off exhibit.
My kids were crushed. They told her how much they loved the Pipa pipa and were looking forward to seeing one. She was so impressed that she arranged for one to come out in a container so we could see it.
What a wow moment!
Visiting an aquarium will give your kids the opportunity to view animals up close, where they can see its size, body composition, movement and sometimes even their eating habits. What a fabulous way to make science interactive and cement your child’s learning.