We can’t all dive underwater and go face-to-face with the fascinating creatures that live in the ocean in the Pacific Northwest. That’s why the award-winning Ocean Wise AquaVan takes its mobile aquaria far and wide.

The travelling wet lab is educational and fun for young people.

Between September 16 and October 9, 2019, the AquaVan’s four educators will take its popular denizens of the deep to visit some 2,600 students in elementary and secondary schools in Terrace, Kitimat and the surrounding area.

AquaVan team members teach children ocean literacy.

The Ocean Wise team will also visit Prince Rupert to participate in a community event on September 28, where children can share their AquaVan experience with their families. 

“Providing youth with a hands-on learning experience in their own backyard is invaluable in creating stewards for our environment,” says Catriona Wilson, manager of Mobile Programs for Ocean Wise.

Ocean literacy is always on the AquaVan agenda, with programs that focus on how we, as humans, affect rivers, lakes and oceans. The topics discussed may include local history and regional environmental issues, with the objective of enabling students to become informed and active lifelong caretakers of healthy waterways.

Children examine a false killer whale skull.

First, participants in these programs will experience a “virtual visit” with Ocean Wise educators, allowing connections between them and other local students. They’ll learn about their responsibilities to our environment as individuals, as well as the obligations of their communities and governments to fight climate change.

Crabs are some of the most interesting creatures that live in B.C. waters.

The hands-on fun begins when the Ocean Wise AquaVan rolls onto the schoolgrounds, with its mobile aquaria alive with sea cucumbers, sea stars, sea urchins, crabs, sea anemones and other invertebrates. A classroom visit is one aspect of the interaction, but the students also don their rubber boots to check out local streams with the Ocean Wise educators.

On September 30th, youth in Terrace will also have an opportunity to share what they learned in a special Climate Communication Showcase. 

The generous sponsorship of LNG Canada will allow the Ocean Wise AquaVan to visit these northern B.C. communities. Is the aqauvan coming to your community? See the full schedule of stops here:”

Is the AquaVan coming to your community? Have a look:

AquaVan Schedule of Events

Sept. 17                                   Skeena Middle School, Terrace

Sept. 18                                   Ecole Mountainview or Mountain View Christian Academy, Terrace

Sept. 19                                   Thornhill Elementary School, Terrace

Sept. 20                                   ‘Na Aksa Gyilak ‘yoo School, Terrace

Sept. 24                                   Skeena Middle School & Parkside Secondary School, Terrace

Sept. 25                                   Suwilaawks Community School, Terrace      

Sept. 26                                   Uplands Elementary School, Terrace

Sept. 27                                   Cassie Hall Elementary, Terrace

Sept. 28                                   Community event, Coast Mountain College (12 pm – 5 pm), Prince Rupert

Sept. 30                                   Kitselas Community Event, TBD

Oct. 1                           Strong Start and Day Care students, Kitimat.

Oct. 2                           Strong Start and Day Care students, Terrace

Oct. 3                           Kitimat High/Mount Elizabeth Middle/Secondary School,


Oct. 4                           Nechako Elementary School with Kitimat and Mount Elizabeth Secondary Schools, Kitimat

Oct. 7                           Kildala Elementary School, Kitimat

Oct. 8                St. Anthony’s School, Kitimat    

Oct. 9                           Haisla Community School, Haisla

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2 Responses

  1. Chantal Meijer

    Can children visit the van if their class is not on the visiting list in Terrace?
    Also, is it too late for a school not on the list to get a visit in Terrace?

    • Ocean Wise

      Hi, Chantal. I’m so sorry — I didn’t see your question until today. I hope your child had a chance to visit the AquaVan.
      Kate Zimmerman
      Ocean Wise


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