We've taken a few educational boat trips over the years but yours was by far the best all-around experience. The highlight had to be the breadth of sea life we pulled up and investigated, interacted with and, of course, learn about."
– Rockland County, NY, camp director

Fun & Learning

SandTigercHerity silo copy

Sand Tiger Shark Fun Fact

Looks closely at the sand tiger sharks in the "Ocean Beyond the Sound" exhibit. Their snout and jaws are covered in tiny holes. These are receptors for the sharks' "sixth sense" – their ability to detect bioelectric fields emitted by other animals (including potential prey).



High School Programs

NEW!  Behind-the-Scenes Marine Careers (Grades 9-12)

Aquar.interns1Explore off-exhibit areas as you learn about the many careers that are involved in making The Maritime Aquarium a great place for visitors as well as for the animals that live here. View the “Ocean Beyond the Sound” exhibit – with its 7-foot sand tiger sharks – from above and visit our “Fish Kitchen” to learn how our aquarists meet the nutritional needs of more than 1,000 animals every single day. Students will not only learn about the behind-the-scenes operations of the Aquarium, but what they need to do to work with animals in a similar setting some day. One hour.   Includes live animals in the presentation.

At Aquarium: $120 for first or simultaneous; $110 for second & additional sequential; in addition to Aquarium admission.

Not available as a Traveling Teacher program.


NEW!  Shark Anatomy & Evolution (Grades 9-12)

Aquar.shark-dissection-4-webFor decades, sharks have been called “living fossils.” But recent studies have challenged the notion that sharks have changed little over the course of evolutionary time. Guided by the Aquarium’s expert instructors, students will work in groups dissecting small sharks to investigate shark adaptations and why they’ve been so successful. Students also will learn about the relationship between bony and cartilaginous fish, and why many shark species are now threatened. Two hours.  Includes live animals in the presentation.

At Aquarium: $275 for first or simultaneous; $250 for second & additional sequential

Not available as a Traveling Teacher program.

Grades 9-12:  Next Gen., LS1.A, LS4.B, LS4.C, LS4.D;  CT Science, 10.5;  CT Core Scientific, D INQ: 1, 2, 6, 10.

Congressman Jim Himes looks in on a shark dissection program.

Watch one of our high school programs.

Coming in 2015!  Sound Sentinels (Grades 9-12)

How do scientists measure climate change, and what tells them if it’s having an impact on habitats and species? It’s all about sentinels and, in this new program, high school students will learn about the biotic and abiotic sentinels that scientists use to understand the effects of a changing climate on Long Island Sound. After collecting and analyzing water-quality data and up-close examination of live animal sentinels, the program culminates with an immersive role-playing activity. Students adopt the perspectives of a variety of community members as they debate issues related to the health and management of the Sound. 90 minutes. Includes live animals in the presentation. Also available as a Traveling Teacher presentation at your school.

At Aquarium: $175 for first or simultaneous; $160 for second & additional sequential; in addition to Aquarium admission.

Traveling Teacher at Your School: $225 for first or simultaneous; $175 for second & additional sequential. Add’l travel fees may apply.

Grades 9-12:  Next Gen., LS2.A, LS2.C, LS4.C, LS4.D, ESS2.D, ESS3.A, ESS3.C, ESS3,D;  CT Science, 9.8, 9.9, 10.5;  Common Core, RST.11-12.1, RST.11-12.7, WHST.9-12.9, SL.11-12.5, MP.2, HSS-IC.B.6;  CT Core Scientific, D INQ: 1, 2, 4, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10.


Study Cruises for School/Scout/Camps (by charter): 

Cruises take place aboard The Maritime Aquarium's new R/V Spirit of the Sound, a 63-foot catamaran that is the country's only research vessel with hybrid-electric propulsion. She's bigger, greener and quieter than out previous boat.

NEW!  • Biodiversity and Conservation (Grades 9-12)

April-June and Sept.-Oct.:  9 a.m. & 1 p.m. weekdays and 9 a.m. weekends
July & August:  9 a.m. daily
cruise - high schoolStudents utilize such sampling techniques as a plankton tow, bio-dredge and otter trawl and then identify and classify the taxonomy of animals hauled up from the deep, from microscopic
plankton to crabs, mollusks and a variety of fish (maybe even small sharks). Review data showing population trends over time and learn about the conservation issues facing Norwalk Harbor and Long Island Sound. Cost for any cruise: $650 for up to 30 participants; $1,100 for 31-60 participants. Additional Aquarium admission is optional.
Grades 9-12: Next Gen., LS2.A, LS2.B, LS2.C, LS4.A, LS4.C, LS4.D, ESS2.D, ESS3.A, ESS3.C, ESS3.D;  CT Science, 9.8, 10.2;  CT Core Scientific, D INQ: 6, 10.

•  Seal Spotting Cruises

Call for weekday dates: (203) 852-0700, ext. 2206.wild seals copy

Study winter biodiversity, including waterfowl and plankton, as you seek out some of the seals that winter in Long Island Sound. Learn about the seals and get a broad picture of how the Sound's animal population changes in the winter -- which animals swim south, which bury in the mud and which have adapted to the cold. Students will use scientific tools and instruments to measure weather and water chemistry. 2.5 hours. Dress very warmly! Binoculars are provided.  Passengers must be over 42" tall. Capacity: 30.  Cost: $425 for up to 30 participants. Additional Aquarium admission is optional.

Grades 9-12: 
Next Gen., LS2.A, LS2.B, LS2.C, LS2.D, LS4.A, LS4.C, LS4.D, ESS2.D, ESS3.A, ESS3.C, ESS3.D;  CT Science, 9.8, 10.2;  CT Core Scientific, D INQ: 6, 10.

And coming in Spring 2015:

• Oceanography on the Sound (Grades 9-12)

• Science – An Estuary Study (Grades 9-12)


Cruises can occur in rain, cold and wind, and are canceled only if conditions are dangerous. Please dress accordingly!

All observations made on study cruises are recorded. This data is part of an ongoing student-based research project called the Long Island Sound Biodiversity Study. Details ...

TEACHERS: ask about the pre-cruise activity guide when you make your reservation.  Need financial assistance? Download the Group Financial-aid Form and either email it or mail to: The Maritime Aquarium, 10 North Water Street, Norwalk, CT 06854; or fax it to: (203) 852-8892.

Teachers in CT, NY, and NJ - Ride Free

Teachers and school administrators, if you have not experienced a Marine Life Study Cruise, we want you aboard! You and a companion can join us on a regularly scheduled public cruise at no charge. You can choose to ride now on our current trawler or try out our new hybrid-electric catamaran later this fall. Advance reservations are required. Qualified licensed educators presently teaching in CT, NY, or NJ, with proper school ID only please.  Call our Reservations Office: 203-852-0700, ext. 2206, Monday through Friday 9:30 - 4:30 to reserve your spot.



Mission: The Maritime Aquarium inspires people of all ages to appreciate and protect the Long Island Sound ecosystem
and the global environment through
living exhibits, marine science, and environmental education.


10 North Water Street          Norwalk, CT 06854          Phone: 203.852.0700         Fax: 203.838.5416

The Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk is a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) corporation


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