Students learn from marine biologists how to think like scientists, brainstorm with their classmates, and make detailed observations by examining organisms from the rocky intertidal ecosystem. During an Ocean Lab program, students apply the scientific method and use tools such as identification keys and a squid dissection to explore five phyla of marine animals: Arthropoda, Mollusca, Cnidaria, Echinodermata, and Chordata*. As they learn about these creatures and their ecology, students are inspired to respect and protect local marine ecosystems.









The Ocean Lab program can be adapted to different grade levels to cover basic concepts or more advanced content depending on your class needs. Although designed to stand alone, this program is an excellent supplement to field study programs such as our Discovery Voyage or Tidepool Expedition.

A modified Ocean Lab is also offered as an Inland Voyage—a program for which live animals are brought into the classroom (this excludes the squid dissection).


*For more information about these phyla and about this program, please review the Teacher’s Guide

Ocean Lab Pricing:


2.5 hour program (5 stations) 

Up to 30 students -- 3 instructors -- $470*

31 to 45 students -- 4 instructors -- $570*

46 to 60 students -- 5 instructors -- $670*


At school 

2.5 hour program (5 stations)

Up to 30 students -- 3 instructors -- $470* + $1.50/mile

31 to 45 students -- 4 instructors -- $570* + $1.50/mile


*Sliding scale available depending on need

Can't afford listed prices? Click here to apply for more sponsorship!

Ocean Lab

Click to see program themes.


4th and up 

Ocean Lab Program Forms and Information 

Click on each document to download 

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500 Discovery Parkway

Redwood City, CA 94063

Tel: 650-364-2760

Click here for directions

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Marine Science Institute is a tax-exempt 501(c)(3) not for profit organization. Federal Tax ID# 94-1719649

© 2020 All Rights Reserved  

Inspiring respect and stewardship for the marine environment through experiential learning

Thank you to our generous supporters who donated more than $25,000
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Scientific Method consists of principles and procedures for the systematic pursuit of knowledge involving the recognition and formulation of a problem, the collection of data through observation and experiment, and the formulation and testing of hypotheses.