Reservations for the 2019–20 school year are now open.
Student drawing in the Discovery Lab
Location: Bechtel Education Center

Discovery Labs are staff-led, hands-on experiences focusing on a marine or conservation topic. Each program lasts 60 minutes and supports Next Generation Science Standards. Programs include an opportunity for students to observe live marine invertebrates, use technology and engage in science conversations. Discovery Labs for grades 3–12 take place in the Bechtel Education Center and students are invited to explore the Aquarium after their program.

Group Information:

Minimum 15 students, maximum 35 students

Maximum of 6 adults, including teachers allowed in each classroom (extra adults may meet the group after the program ends).

A maximum of three consecutive grade levels can be accommodated in one Bechtel Education Center Learning Lab. Siblings not enrolled in the class with the reservation are not allowed to participate in the program.

Program Times and Schedule (Tues.–Fri.):

If you arrive after your designated arrival time, we may not be able to accommodate your students.

9 a.m. Program

  • 8:45 a.m. arrive at Bechtel Education Center
  • 9–10 a.m. program
  • 12–12:30 p.m. lunch in the Aquarium picnic area

10:30 a.m. Program

  • 10:15 a.m. arrive at Bechtel Education Center
  • 10:30–11:30 a.m. program
  • 11:30 a.m.–12 p.m. lunch in the Bechtel Education Center multipurpose room

Program Options

The kelp forest

Biodiversity of the Kelp Forest

The kelp forests of Monterey Bay are amongst the most biologically diverse ecosystems on earth. Students will explore how ecosystems with high biodiversity are more resilient to change. Through hands-on and data-driven activities and observations of live animals, students will experience how the Reef Check organization collects data along the California coast in order to monitor the coastal ecosystems, then use that data to calculate biodiversity at different coastal monitoring sites.
Next Generation Science Standards
  • Science and Engineering Practice
    Engaging in Argument from Evidence
  • Disciplinary Core Ideas
    Supports LS2.C
  • Crosscutting Concept
    Stability and Change
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Student looking at a butterfly through a microscope

Carbonated Seas

Global climate change isn't just about rising temperatures and sea levels; the addition of excess carbon dioxide, created through society's burning of fossil fuels, is also making a more acidic ocean. During this class, students will discover how ocean chemistry is changing, observe live animals and consider the impacts of ocean acidification on marine ecosystems. A basic understanding of chemistry and chemical equations is recommended for classes participating in this lab.

Next Generation Science Standards
  • Science and Engineering Practices
    Developing and Using Models
  • Disciplinary Core Ideas
    Supports ESS3.D
    Relates to ESS3.C
  • Crosscutting Concept
    Cause and Effect
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