The leaves are starting to change colour, school is back in session and the Vancouver Aquarium’s AquaVan, presented by BC Hydro and BG Canada, is back on the road for another semester travelling to communities across British Columbia and Alberta. Working in supplement with the provincial school curriculum guidelines for kindergarten through grade 12, AquaVan programs are designed to inspire all ages and encourage the discovery of connections between animals, environments and ourselves.

“People are always excited when we roll in to town,” says Catriona Wilson, manager of the AquaVan program. “We often get asked, ‘Is it alive?’ in relation to our sea stars and anemones. There are many people even living in the lower mainland of Vancouver who have never been to a beach and never seen a sea star up close.”

Vancouver Aquarium AquaVan

An Aquarium educator teaches students about aquatic life.

In 2013, the Vancouver Aquarium AquaVan reached 13,000 students in 63 schools across 42 communities. In 2014 the AquaVan team will travel to Calgary, Alberta, through central B.C and over to Vancouver Island spending up to five weeks on the road at a time. Each of the AquaVan programs satisfies a wide range of learning outcomes outlined by the Ministry of Education and features live animals such as sea stars, anemones and sea cucumbers, artifacts and a range of engaging activities that connect students to the waterways around them.

Vancouver Aquarium education programs for students.

Aquarium staff hold up some of the artifacts used to inspire students across the province.

“These children are the ambassadors of the future. Our hands-on learning approach connects with these students in a unique way, inspiring them to learn more about marine life.”

Residents of the Vancouver lower mainland can see the AquaVan in action at community events throughout December.  Would you like the Aquarium AquaVan to visit your community, event or school? Give us a call at 604-659-3488 or send us an email to [email protected] to arrange a booking.

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