There are several STEM field classes led by DISL's Discovery Hall Programs' marine educators.

Due to the availability of classroom space, the maximum number of participants allowed per activity is 35, unless otherwise stated.  Reservations must be confirmed one month before arrival. Additional information on programs, nearby educational attractions, preparing your students for their trip, and more is available upon request by contacting Scheduling Coordinator Jennifer Latour by email at or by phone at (251) 861-2141 x7511. See our Academic Year Field Trip FAQ’s for more help planning your trip and downloading forms.

Designing Plankton (5th – 12th)(3.5 hr) (lab + field activity)
Students investigate the many species of phyto- and zooplankton using plankton nets to take live samples from Mobile Bay, and use microscopes in the laboratory to observe what they caught.  Students then apply what they have learned and ‘bioengineer’ their own plankter to use in the Race to Survive! 

The Oceanography of Waves (5th – 12th)(3.5 hr) (lab + field activity)
Students explore the scientific method as they develop and test hypotheses by measuring, graphing, and analyzing wave height data.  The group explores the physics of waves, online examples of unusual waves, and investigates hypotheses using our wave tank while the educator facilitates a discussion of how waves can impact shorelines and communities with their constancy and power.

ROVing the Gulf (5th – 12th)(3.5 hr) (STEM) (lab + field activity)
Students design, build and fly their own unique remotely operated vehicle (ROV).  As they do, they explore buoyancy, and hydrodynamics and apply the engineering design process, learning to work as teams and rise to challenges as their ROVs carry out missions. The educator shares local and global examples of ROV use in underwater research, exploration, and industry.

Ocean Currents and Drifters (5th – 12th)(3.5 hr) (lab + field activity)
Students design and build current drifters, a type of technology scientists use to study ocean currents.  Students deploy a full-size ocean drifter at the beach and track its motion using an app. The significance of nearshore currents in barrier island dynamics and the effects of ocean currents on the distribution of organisms, heat, energy, and other materials in the water are discussed.

Sea Level Rise and Climate Change (5th – 12th)(3.5 hr) (lab + field activity)
Through a series of short laboratory activities, students explore the issue of sea level rise, climate change, and barrier island dynamics.  Traveling to the beach, students use common GPS technology to map island shorelines, upload their maps to Google Earth and track changes in shorelines seasonally and over longer periods of time.