Next Generation Science Standards-aligned experiences for your class! Reservations are required.
- Museum reservations taken Monday through Friday from 1:00–5:00 PM at 805-682-4711 ext. 108.
- Sea Center reservations taken Monday–Friday, 9:00 AM–5:00 PM, at 805-962-2526 ext. 108.
- Interactive Tour
(Tuesday–Friday, 10:00–11:00 AM; 11:00 AM–Noon) Group size: maximum 80 students per hour. May be combined with a Discovery Lab, Outdoor Nature Exploration, or Planetarium Program.
These tours provide open-ended opportunities for discovery in small groups with docents, as available. Students explore the Museum, visiting exhibit halls that focus on regional natural history, including birds, insects, mammals, marine life, paleontology, geology, and Chumash Indians. In various halls, Exploration Stations with Museum docents, as available, offer hands-on opportunities for close observation.
Tours go to most of the Museum’s halls. Clipboards and other student supplies are not allowed on these tours; please see “Mondays My Way” for that option or to focus on one or more halls.
- Discovery Lab
(Tuesday–Friday, 10:00–11:00 AM; 11:00 AM–Noon) Group size: maximum one class. May be combined with an Interactive Tour, Outdoor Nature Exploration, or Planetarium Program.
Up Close - Biology
Using different types of hand lenses and microscopes to observe materials from the living world, students discover beautiful and fine details of the structural adaptations to their habitats by a variety of plants and animals.
Whale of a Tale: Ocean Ecosystem Investigations
In this hands-on exploration set beside our Blue Whale skeleton, students examine how energy is transferred in the Blue Whale's food chain and view phytoplankton and krill under microscopes. Students use observation, experiments, and interpretation of graphs to compare their body's structures and functioning to those of the whale to reveal some of the whale's adaptations to its fully marine life.
- Outdoor Nature Exploration
(Tuesday-Friday, 10:00–11:00 AM; 11:00 AM–Noon)
Group size: maximum one class. May be combined with an Interactive Tour, Discovery Lab, or Planetarium Program.
Research teams of students observe and
record the biotic and abiotic factors indicating
the health of Mission Creek. Water quality
testing is conducted and data collected.
Students catch and identify aquatic animals
to determine the creek's health.
- Planetarium Programs
(Monday–Friday, 10:00–11:00 AM; 11:00 AM–Noon)
Capacity: 44 including adults. May be combined with an Interactive Tour, Discovery Lab, or Outdoor Nature Exploration.
Our Place in Space
Students take a virtual journey through our cosmic neighborhood to explore and compare
different celestial bodies and the relationships between them.
(Monday, 9:30–10:45 AM; 10:45 AM–Noon) Group size: Maximum two classes.
This program is offered to 5th grade students only. It combines Our Place in Space Planetarium Program and our AstroLab. These complementary programs give students a chance to learn about our solar system using hands-on activities and visual presentations.
- Mondays My Way
Monday, 10:00–11:00 AM; 11:00 AM–Noon) Group size: maximum 80 students per hour.
This is an opportunity for teachers to conduct investigations in the exhibit halls with their own classes.
Teacher-prepared scavenger hunts, single hall studies, and special topic focus are some of the possibilities. Monday is the only week day that clipboards are allowed in the Museum.
SEA CENTER EXPLORATIONS
- Interactive Tour
(Monday–Friday, 10:00–11:00 AM; 11:00 AM–Noon) Group size: maximum 80 students. May be combined with a Discovery Lab or Outdoor Nature Exploration.
Trained docents lead small groups in hands-on explorations with marine life. Students learn firsthand about the internal organs of marine animals, and the jobs they perform.
- Outdoor Nature Explorations (on East Beach)
(Monday–Friday, 10:00–11:00 AM; 11:00 AM–Noon) May be combined with an Interactive Tour or Discovery Lab.
Walking the Watershed
Students investigate conditions and test water quality at Mission Creek Lagoon They work in teams to measure salinity, temperature, turbidity, nitrates, dissolved oxygen, pH, and phosphates. While recording and examining data from these tests, students learn the the sources and effects of various pollutants on aquatic life. Data is used to determine the current health of the water at the bottom of the Mission Creek watershed.