Virtual Field Trips

Our Virtual Field Trip programs will never leave you adrift! Choose a Take a Dive learning package that is right for your students or start with one of the Take a Dip programs for an introduction to fun ocean and coastal topics. Or, choose both! Dips are nice entry points for learners of all ages, and they make great precursors to Dive programs.

All options are live, naturalist-led programs, delivered to your classroom or student’s homes via a gated connection through SSC’s YouTube channel, SSC website, or secure Zoom connection.


Take a Dive!

45-minute virtual program + digital interactive extended learning module

$150 per session package; best for 25 or fewer students per session

Take a Dip!

25-minute virtual program, followed by 10 minute Q&A session

$50 per session; best for 25 or fewer students per session

Dips are nice entry points for learners of all ages, and they make great precursors to Dive programs!

Take a Dive!


45-minute virtual program + digital interactive extended learning module

$150 per session package; best for 25 or fewer students per session

Our marine science educators deliver each content- and media-rich program, live, to your students. Magnified images and underwater video footage will complement your age-appropriate program, and students will interact with our educators via chat. Disciplinary core ideas and understandings are introduced in the live program and the digital interactive activity guides promote NGSS scientific inquiry skills and practices, and application of new content knowledge.

Our educator will provide access to and orient your students to the program-specific interactive learning module designed to extend and deepen learning beyond their live encounter with our experts. Teachers may access these Google Slide modules and easily integrate them into their Google Classrooms. 


Take a Dive Programs:


Go Fish! Fish, Sharks, and Skates


Dive in with our experts to learn more about the characteristics fish share and use your powers of observation to explore diversity between species. Students will learn about the benefits and drawbacks of different structural and behavioral adaptations in different habitats in the ocean. 




Essential Questions:

  • What makes a fish a fish? What features do all fish have in common? 
  • What is an adaptation? Why do different fish have different adaptations and how do they vary between fish species?
  • How can careful observations (anatomy, behaviors, location in the water column) help you learn more about a fish?

Student Understandings

  • Students will understand that there are a wide variety of fish in the ocean, and that diversity is due to a wide variety of habitats and ways of living.
  • Students will understand what structural and behavioral adaptations are and how they are essential to the survival of fish throughout the ocean.


Explore the Rocky Shore


Wade into tide pool investigation with our marine science educators to learn more about the unique attributes of the rocky intertidal ecosystem. Students will explore biodiversity, patterns and zonation, and the special adaptations that help animals and algae thrive in this challenging habitat.  



Essential Questions:

  • What is a rocky intertidal ecosystem? What is unique about it? What makes living in this ecosystem challenging? What makes living in this ecosystem beneficial?
  • What is an adaptation? Why are adaptations so important in a rocky shore habitat?

Student Understandings

  • Students will understand how the biotic and abiotic characteristics of a rocky intertidal ecosystem influence an organism’s ability to survive in this environment.
  • Students will understand what physical and behavioral adaptations are and how they can help organisms survive.

Whales, Seals, and SSC Marine Mammal Rescue


Meet a Marine Mammal Rescue (MMR) expert to learn all about the types and characteristics of the marine mammals that live here in the Gulf of Maine. An MMR team member will take students on a mock rescue to learn about the biology, conservation and rehabilitation of whales and seals. At the end of the program, students will investigate ways that we can help keep our ocean and marine wildlife healthy.




Essential Questions:

  • What is a marine mammal? How are they similar/different from land mammals such as humans? From fish?
  • What is Marine Mammal Rescue? Why is it important? How can MMR help inform us about the health of the ocean? 
  • What can we do to keep our ocean healthy?

Student Understandings

  • Students will understand some of the unique adaptations that marine mammals have acquired in order to survive in the ocean.
  • Students will understand how the conservation of marine mammals can help us to maintain a healthy ocean, and how human behavior can impact the health of marine mammals in both positive and negative ways.

Healthy Bays and Reefs


What does a healthy estuarine bay ecosystem look like? Students will discover the plants, algae, and animals that live in an estuary, how these organisms interact with each other, and ways that humans can positively and negatively impact the system. An expert will guide students through an investigation to discover how actions on land can affect nutrient levels, marine populations, and ecosystem health and balance.



Essential Questions:

  • What is a balanced ecosystem? What features of an ecosystem help to keep it balanced? 
  • What can throw an ecosystem out of balance? What are some examples of natural and human influences that can affect reef and bay ecosystems?
  • How can interpretation of data help us better understand system dynamics, cause/effect, and inform changes in behavior or mitigation efforts? 

Student Understandings:

  • Students will understand how biodiversity is essential to maintaining a balanced ecosystem, and how certain natural and human-induced factors can have drastic effects on the biodiversity of a system.
  • Students will understand how humans and reef and bay ecosystems are irrevocably linked, and therefore it is in our best interest to change our behavior to maintain healthy, balanced ecosystems.

Your Inquiry Investigation


Students will learn about the scientific process by conducting their own inquiry investigation. Our marine science educators will introduce students to the importance of curiosity and questions in science, and share examples of inquiry in marine science. Students will be guided through the scientific process, starting with observations, developing a viable comparative question, and methodology.



Essential Questions:

  • What is a scientist? What is the scientific process?
  • What are observations? What is a comparative question? What are methods?
  • Why is inquiry important to advancing scientific understanding of the world we live in?

Student Understandings

  • Students will understand the basic outline of the scientific process, and what it means to conduct an inquiry study.
  • Students will engage in facilitated observation studies to help them understand how careful observations can lead to provocative question development.
  • They will understand and start to form their own comparative question, and have some ideas on how to begin their own research.

Take A Dip!


25-minute virtual program, followed by 10 minute Q&A session

$50 per session; best for 25 or fewer students per session

Dips are nice entry points for learners of all ages, and they make great precursors to Dive programs!

Our naturalist will engage, excite and inspire students with these brief introductions to marine topics. We begin by welcoming the group and providing a general overview of what students will be seeing throughout the program. Teachers and students can ask questions throughout the program; time will be set aside at the end or additional questions.


Take a Dip Programs:


Restoring Reefs

Reefs are like the forests of the ocean, and the home to a wide diversity of marine life. In this tour, students will visit our healthy and distressed tropical reef tanks, a cold water coral tank, and a surprise reef that exists right here in our Great Bay and Little Bay estuaries. Learn about the unique adaptations and interactions that take place in these unique ecosystems.


Our Great Gulf of Maine: Animals and Adaptations!

The Gulf of Maine is one of the most productive marine environments in the world, and home to a great biodiversity of animal and algal species. It is also one of the fastest warming bodies of water on the planet. Students will celebrate this special body of water by visiting our Gulf of Maine exhibit hall tanks and our touch tank, to encounter a variety of coastal shelf, deep water and intertidal species. Take a tour of our indoor tide pool to learn more about the adaptations of the invertebrates found along our rocky shore. We will dive deeper into some of the amazing adaptations these animals and algae employ and if time allows, learn about the star of one of the Gulf’s most successful fisheries.


SSC Marine Mammal Rescue Team

What does it mean to be a member of the SSC Marine Mammal Rescue Team? Meet a team member to learn more about why and how SSC responds to these stranded animals, and discover the great variety of marine mammals that live here in the Gulf of Maine. Students will visit SSC’s marine mammals exhibits, including our impressive whale and rescue exhibits, then watch our team member perform a mock seal response. Students will observe the tools, procedures and precautions that these marine scientists take when working in the field and lab.


Be The Solution To Ocean Pollution

Every year, about eight to twelve million metric tons of plastic is discarded into our oceans all around the world. Along with plastic pollution, marine life faces other forms of pollution like air, sound, and other anthropogenic causes. Students will explore all forms of pollution that threaten our world’s oceans and discuss solutions that we can do at home and throughout our everyday lives.


Turtle Time

Get to know our three-toed box turtle, Raspberry! Box turtles have a carapace with a hinged bottom, allowing them to draw their body inside and “close the door!” But Raspberry is bright, alert and loves to open his shell and walk around for children to observe. 


Sharks and Rays

Sharks are one of Earth’s most amazing and dynamic fish. In this program, students will learn about shark anatomy, behavior, and their acute senses that make them one of the ocean’s greatest predators. Students will observe our live sharks and rays at our Close Encounters tank. 



To Schedule Your Program


Please fill out the Inquiry Form by clicking the button below and we will get back to you ASAP.  Or, you can contact Amanda at [email protected] directly to schedule your program. Once booked, we will make sure you have all of the information you need to make the most of your program.

Virtual Field Trip Inquiry Form


Please read all confirmation materials and communicate the information to participating teachers.

Full payment is required before your program begins.

Cancellation Policy: If you cancel a program 20 business days prior to your program date, you will receive a 50% refund. “No shows” and cancellations made fewer than 20 business days prior will not receive a refund.


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