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OFF-SITE PROGRAMS

CMA's off-site programs are designed with your classroom in mind. These programs meet specific Current and Next Generation Sunshine State Standards and enrich student experiences by providing hands-on learning experiences. Expand upon daily classroom curriculum with a visit from one of CMA's education staff members, as well as different animal artifacts, living creatures, and more.

Off-site programs are...

  • 30-45 minutes in length - perfect for one class period!
  • Available within 40 miles of Clearwater Marine Aquarium (mileage fee applies)
  • Customizable to meet your schedule and curriculum!
  • Geared for either "All Ages" or specific grades - those geared towards specific grades meet Current and Next Generation Sunshine State Standards.
  • Cost $150 for the first program/$125 for each additional program scheduled on the same day at the same site
  • A hands-on way to bring CMA to your classroom!

Available Program Options

Below is our menu of off-site choices! Click the program title to learn more!

Clearwater Marine Aquarium - A Working Marine Animal Hospital (All Ages)

Learn about the behind-the-scenes work of Clearwater Marine Aquarium from our aquarium education staff as we visit your school or other venue for an educational 30 minute presentation all about the aquarium's efforts in marine life preservation. Watch videos of recent rescue works and learn about the growth of our facility since the production of Dolphin Tale. Learn all about Winter the dolphin's amazing story of survival – we'll even bring one of Winter's prosthetic tails for a hands-on, interactive experience.

Tail Talk (All Ages)

Winter the dolphin is CMA's most popular resident. Her amazing story of survival has inspired millions around the world. Discover the behind-the-scenes story of Winter's rescue, get up-close and personal with Winter's tail, and learn how her ongoing progress is benefitting people and animals across the globe.

Sea Turtle Nesting (All Ages)

CMA works to protect sea turtle nests up and down Pinellas County's coastlines. Learn all about the Loggerhead sea turtle life cycle through an exclusive video presentation that follows the mother sea turtle on Pinellas County beaches. Examine the anatomy of the sea turtle, including hands-on time with real turtle shells and skulls. We'll even rebuild CMA's protective barrier for a sea turtle nest, all within your classroom or meeting venue.

No Bones About It! (K-2)

Description: Sea stars, urchins, and crabs – oh my! Learn all about the Gulf of Mexico's smaller inhabitants that call CMA home through this hands-on look at our invertebrate neighbors. Dip your fingers into our mobile touch tank and see how these spineless animals have adapted to live on our ocean floor. A perfect introduction for young beachcombers to our local marine life neighbors!
Educational Foci: Describing animals using our five senses, comparing and contrasting how different animals move and what they need to survive
Age Range: K-2nd Grade
Sunshine State Standards: SC.K.P.12.1, SC.K.L.14.3, SC.1.L.12.1, SC.1.L.17.1, SC.2.L.17.1, SC.2.L.17.2

Rescue, Rehab, Release (1-5)

Description: Through the Rescue, Rehab, &Release Program, students will learn all about Clearwater Marine Aquarium's marine animal hospital and stranding team. Students will act out a marine animal rescue and walk through the steps taken when CMA's stranding team receives a call. We may also watch videos and hear stories of recent marine animal rescues, including our dolphin calf, Hope, rescued in December of 2010.
Educational Foci: Describing what animals need to survive, how marine animals are adapted to their environment, taking measurements to gain necessary information, and basic comparative anatomy
Age Range: 1st-5th Grade
Sunshine State Standards: SC.1.L.17.1, MA.1.G.5.1, SC.2.L.17.1, SC.2.L.17.2, MA.2.G.3.1, SC, MA.3.G.5.2, SC.4.L.16.3, SC.5.L.17.1, SC.5.L.14.2

Dolphin Deputies (1-5)

Description: Learn about CMA's rescued animal ambassadors as we relive their unique stories of survival. Discover the positive and negative impacts humans can have on the oceans and coastal environments. The class will play "Scan your Can" - a recycling game that focuses on how sorting garbage can help save the planet, as well as learn new ways to prevent animal illness and injuries in our marine ecosystems. By the end of the program, each class member will be dubbed a "Dolphin Deputy."
Educational Foci: Describing what animals, including humans, need to survive, different forms of energy that humans rely on, and overall human impact on the environment
Age Range: 1st-5th grade
Sunshine State Standards: SC.1.L.17.1, SC.2.L.17.1, SC.L.17.2, SC.2.P.10.1, SC.3.P.10.1, SC.4.P.10.1, SC.4.P.10.4, SC.4.L.17.4, SC.5.P.10.1

Marine Animal Adaptations (3-5)

Description: During this educational experience, students will learn about the adaptations that sea turtles, otters, and dolphins use to live in their watery worlds!
Students will spend time applying what they've learned about CMA's residents with a fun activity that will bring out the "wild side" of the group. Classroom time will also include a question and answer session about Winter and how she was able to adapt to the loss of her tail. Students will have the opportunity to get up-close and personal with Winter's tail. Educational Foci: How animals are scientifically classified, comparing learned and natural behaviors, discussing how marine animals are adapted to their different environments
Age Range: 3rd-5th Grade
Sunshine State Standards: SC.3.L.15.1, SC.4.L.16.3, SC.5.L.17.1

Flipping for Dolphins (4-5)

Description: Have a class full of future marine mammal trainers? Flipping for Dolphins focuses solely on the work done by CMA with our four resident Atlantic Bottlenose Dolphins. The program begins a biography of each of CMA's resident dolphins, as the class learns how they came to be at CMA. Students will also learn about training methods, operant conditioning, and positive reinforcement as they use real training tools to "train" one another fun behaviors
Educational Foci: Comparing learned and natural behaviors, how psychology plays a role in animal care, discussing how marine animals are adapted to their different environments, how humans imitate those natural environments and behaviors for animals in captivity
Age Range: 4th-5th Grade
Sunshine State Standards: SC.4.L.16.3, SC.5.L.17.1

Bringing Up Baby (4-8)

Description: What does it take to care for an orphaned dolphin or otter pup? We'll focus on our younger rescued animals and the extra special care needed for these marine animal babies. You'll see examples of a whale's baby bottle, learn how to make dolphin formula, and see footage of our otter pups first learning to swim. Discover natural versus learned behaviors as we focus on how marine mammals care for their young in the wild.
Educational Foci: How scientists take on different roles to create solutions to problems, how reproductive strategies differ among species, comparing learned and natural behaviors
Age Range: 4th-8th Grade
Sunshine State Standards: SC.4.L.16.3, SC.5.L.17.1, SC.6.N.1.5

Stories of Survival (9-12)

Description: As a marine animal hospital, Clearwater Marine Aquarium sees a variety of animals in distress. Learn about the medical side of CMA's work, from triage to surgery, from cold stun to fibropapillomatosis. We'll discuss the anatomical benefits of Winter's prosthetic tail, and how basic biology and physiology play a role in our everyday work.
Educational Foci: How technology assists with the health of animals, how humans impact our environment, how innovative methods help to protect natural ecosystems
Age Range: 9th-12th Grade
Sunshine State Standards: SC.912.L.16.10, SC.912.L.17.16, SC.912.L.17.17

How to register:

To reserve your off site program, please call (727) 441-1790 ext. 252. Two weeks' advance registration is highly recommended for off-site programs. See "Helpful Hints" for more details.

Helpful Hints:

To make the most out of your experience, here are some helpful hints!
  • Try to book your off-site program at least 1 month ahead of time. Keep in mind, we are busier in the spring time and tend to book up faster!
  • A mileage fee of $0.56 per mile applies to all off-site programs.
  • Payment is due prior to program date.
  • All fees are waived for Pinellas County schools during Great American Teach-In.
  • Videos and CMA Curriculum are available on our website and can be used to introduce your class to CMA prior to our visit.
  • Download the prepared itinerary below to make the most of your CMA educational experience! The itinerary also contains all reservation and refund policies, as well as accommodation information.