School Field Trip Programs

Our education programs reinforce the Ohio Revised Science Standards, in addition to implementing Social Studies Standards and Common Core Standards. Inquiry based programs engage your students with the aquatic world from the shores of Lake Erie to the Caribbean Ocean.

The programs listed below are offered mid-September through mid-June. If you are planning to visit the aquarium from mid-June through mid-September, please take a look at our Youth Group and Summer Programs page and scroll down to the Aquatic Trek program.

Preschool to Kindergarten

I See Sea Creatures

After reading Eric Carle’s A House for Hermit Crab, students are engaged in hands-on activities that promote comprehension in science, literacy and mathematics. Learn about marine invertebrates and go on the hunt for the real life inspirations for Eric Carle’s characters. (1hour 30min)

Enhances standards in life science, science inquiry, language arts, and math.

Preschool Teacher Guide
Kindergarten Teacher Guide

Kindergarten to Grade 2

Basic Training – An Investigation of Animal Needs

Students become first class experts on animal basic needs as they venture through the aquarium to find what food, water, shelter, air, and covering different life needs to survive. The students apply their new basic needs knowledge by constructing a simulated habitat for both freshwater and saltwater life. (2 hours)

Enhances standards in life science, earth science, science inquiry, and math.

Basic Training Teacher Guide

CSI – Creature Science Investigators

Students work in investigation teams and use creature case files that employ animal adaptations and basic needs as clues to help them identify creatures in four different habitats. Along the way they investigate hundreds of other aquatic critters. (1hour 30min)

Enhances standards in life science.

CSI Teacher Guide

Grades 3 to 5

Coral Reef Life

Explore the incredible biodiversity of a coral reef habitat. Learn about the life cycle of coral animals and how corals form the physical foundation of the reef. Discover which animals indicate a healthy reef. Visit our new touch pool and encounter sea stars, urchins, conchs, and more. (1hour 30min)

Enhances standards in life science and earth science.

Sharks! 1.0

Come face-to-face with these magnificent creatures and investigate the unique adaptations that make them top predators. Learn the important role sharks play in the ocean food chain and why these creatures should be revered, not feared. (1hour 30min)

Enhances standards in life science and science inquiry.

Sharks 1.0 Teacher Guide

Rivers and Lakes: Keeping our Great Lake Great

Sponsored by:


Become water quality scientists to investigate the health of the Cuyahoga River. Students explore how Cleveland’s industrial history affected animal life in the water. Students conduct hands-on water quality experiments, tour the Ohio’s Freshwater gallery, and learn the importance of protecting our waters from pollution. (3 hours)

Enhances standards in life science, language arts, math, and social studies.

Rivers Lakes- Keeping the Great Lakes Great Teacher Guide

Aquatic Animal Adaptations

Sponsored by:


Investigate how changes in aquatic environments affect animal life. Work in teams to investigate aquatic habitats and identify unique adaptations that allow fish to thrive. Then students work in teams, using the STEM model, to create a fish to live in a specific habitat. (3 hours)

Enhances standards in life science, language arts, and math.

Aquatic Animal Adaptations Teacher Guide

Grades 6 to 8

Sharks! 2.0

Come face-to-face with these magnificent creatures and investigate their unique adaptations. We’ll track a Great White shark in the ocean, learn about the important role sharks play in the biome, and discover why these creatures should be revered, not feared. (1hour 30min)

Enhances standards in life science.

Sharks 2.0 Teacher Guide

Biome Expedition – New Program!

Jump aboard the imaginary SS Moses Cleveland for an exciting voyage through earth’s aquatic biome. Collect data on biotic and abiotic factors found beneath the water’s surface in both fresh and salt water regions. Along the way, compare and contrast adaptations that help aquatic animals survive in these unique homes. (2 hours)

Enhances standards in life science and social studies.

AP High School and College

Water Quality Scientists

Sponsored by:


Students explore the deep interconnection between Cleveland’s industrial history and water quality of the Cuyahoga River. By completing a series of chromatic chemical tests, students investigate temperature, pH, dissolved oxygen, phosphates, nitrates, and turbidity. Students tour the Ohio Freshwater gallery to investigate native aquatic species and discover why conservation is so important. (3 hours)

Cleveland’s Cuyahoga Connection

College students learn how the aquarium was built in a historic building and investigate how the Cuyahoga River has influenced conservation and the city of Cleveland. Finally, participate in a self-guided tour of the aquarium and discover the biodiversity of aquatic life. (1hour 15min)

Marine Science Tour

Advanced placement high school science and college science glasses take an in depth tour of the aquarium. Take a peek behind the scenes in this guided tour. Investigate the biodiversity of aquatic creatures and how we care for them at the aquarium. Best suited for advanced placement students (1hour 30min)

Outreach Programs K-3

Turtle and Tortoise

Our outreach program brings the animals to you! In this program we explore what makes turtles and tortoises similar and different, and other features that make these two animals so special. So come out of your shell, and we’ll come out of ours. (45 min)

All School Ages!

Aquatic Trek

Take your group on an underwater adventure! Get up close and personal with seahorses and an octopus, splash around with stingrays, and travel down a 175-foot-long underwater Shark Sea Tube. This underwater adventure transports you from the north coast to the seacoast in a guided tour designed for camps and groups of all ages. (1hour 15 min)

Aquatic Trek Teacher Guide

Land, Lake, and River

See historic Cleveland between the Cuyahoga River and Lake Erie on Lolly the Trolley and learn how this working river grew our city, caught on fire from pollution, and became a national model for conservation efforts. Then see what’s below the water line at the Greater Cleveland Aquarium when you survey Ohio’s aquatic life and compare the habitats of freshwater fish to oceanic life. (25 people minimum)

Custom Programs

We welcome program ideas from teachers; please contact Ray Patacca at with your suggestions.

To schedule your visit please call the Education Department at (216) 862-8803 ext. 7703 or email at Plan at least two hours for your visit. For pricing and additional information please see the Booking Information page.

For questions please contact our Education Coordinator, at or 216.862.8803 ext. 7703