South Sound Estuary Association (SSEA) offers extensive education programing in a variety of estuary and marine topics for all ages.
Programs for K-12 educational field trips include the following:
- Meet the Beach K-12 – K-12 students visit local area beaches at low tide – exploring and enjoying the beach and the critters that live there. Students participate in SSEA educator-led activities focusing on the intertidal zone.
- Estuarium – Our education team works with students and youth groups to experience fun and exciting private visits to the Estuarium. 90 minute group sessions start at $75. Large groups or groups with longer visits in mind may have an additional fee. Contact the Estuarium Manager at 360 915-0773 for questions and scheduling. To request a group visit, complete the Group Request Form by clicking HERE and return to taisha(at)sseacenter.org.
- On the Water – Secondary students, teachers, and SSEA educators depart from the Port of Olympia on the charter boat “My Girl” and rotate through four interactive learning stations during the three hour cruise around Budd Inlet. Students have the opportunity to learn about marine biodiversity, to examine the role of plankton in food webs, to measure water quality, and discuss pollution and ocean acidification. Students also learn about navigation and marine science careers.
- Estuary Life and Landforms – Elementary students learn about the important factors sediment and erosion play in an estuary and the changes that take place for estuary life when dredging occurs using the Landforms model at the Estuarium. There is also a hands-on module on shellfish and the role they play in the estuary ecosystem. A walking tour in downtown Olympia addresses both estuary life and landforms through a historical perspective.
For a detailed list of current SSEA K-12 educational topics in a curriculum grid, click HERE.
SSEA can customize field trips for any groups to meet your estuary and marine ecosystem learning objectives. Please click HERE to find the Group Reservation Form. If you have any questions about our educational programs or would like to volunteer to help, please contact Nancy Arnold at nancy(at)SSEAcenter.org.