“Provide hands-on, field-based outdoor education to visiting elementary and secondary schools”
Our school programs offer unique and immersive learning opportunities to connect youth with the rich environmental and cultural identity of the region and build a life-long appreciation and respect for the natural world.
What programs do you offer? We offer a variety of ecology programs for K-12 students – see below for the school programs we offer!
How long are your programs? Each program runs for about 1.5 hours. We will do our best to accommodate your preferred date and time, however some programs are tide and equipment dependent. Click here for local tide information.
How much do your programs cost? We offer our school programs for a flat rate of $250 per group. If you would like to book an additional program on the same day our rate is $200 per group.
How do we book a program? Please contact us to inquire about our availability or for more information – we will do our best to book you in for the ecology program of your choice.
Our intertidal ecology program is a great way to learn about the fascinating creatures that inhabit our coastal tide pools. Tide pools exist in the rocky intertidal zone (intertidal: the area between the highest high tide and the lowest low tide). We have two high tides and two low tides every day (~6 hrs between each change); thus, half the time the rocky intertidal zone is underwater and half the time it is exposed to the air. Not only do the marine creatures that inhabit this rugged environment have to deal with fierce waves, cold water and marine predation when the tide is in, they also have to adapt to being out of the water for extended periods and avoid terrestrial predation when the tide is out.
Our intertidal walks draw on both scientific and cultural perspectives to provide a unique appreciation of this fascinating ecosystem. Intertidal walks are 1-1.5 hours in duration and are delivered during low tide.
Oceanography and Plankton Ecology
Plankton (from greek planktos, meaning wanderer) are marine organisms that live in the water column and cannot swim against the current. Some are photosynthetic and use the sun’s energy to grow, while others are true animals, eating other organisms to grow. In fact, most marine invertebrates start off their lives in planktonic form! Though you may not always see them, plankton are out there, and some will become a feast for tiny fish or giant whales.
Our instructors will demonstrate some of the key protocols that oceanographers use to collect data on our world’s oceans, including collecting plankton for students to examine under a microscope. We’ll also discuss seasonal variation, food web dynamics, and the ecology of this fascinating group of organisms.
Birds – the toothless, feathered, egg-laying animals that inhabit just about every corner of the Earth – are amongst the most diverse group of chordates. In our avian ecology program, students will explore the diversity of songbirds, seabirds, and shorebirds found in Clayoquot Sound.
Instructors will provide a brief introduction to classification systems and characteristics and identification of species, with a focus on habitat preferences. Teaching will be tailored to the grade (curriculum) level and requirements of individual groups. This is a great introduction to the birds found on the west coast! BYOB(incoculars).
If you have any questions about our courses, our events, or just us in general – we’re here to help!