K-12 Education Programs

Overview

The Grand Bay NERR K-12 On-the-Road Program brings great interactive presentations to classrooms along the Mississippi Gulf Coast. Students are introduced to biodiversity, diverse coastal habitats, water quality, and marine litter stewardship with a focus on science literacy. Strong emphasis is placed on how to become better stewards of the coastal habitats. On-the-Road Programs start in the classroom (See Offsite Programs below), and usually conclude with field experiences within the Grand Bay NERR (See Onsite Programs below). We investigate diverse habitats, the range of biological diversity for both plants & animals, and perform water quality testing with the students. Before doing the On the Road Programs, all schools receive preparatory lesson plans aligned with state standards. Pre- and post- tests are given to evaluate the presentations and field experiences. Hands-on activities are used to involve students in learning about diversity of coastal habitats such as: marshes, pine savannas, and tidal creeks, biological diversity of both plants & animals, and stewardship practices. Field experiences have students participating in activities such as: dip netting along the marshes, cast netting in the bayou, and performing water quality testing.

Our On-the-Road Program is our primary K-12 education program, but we also support other K-12 programs like science competitions, science fairs, and camp groups.


Offsite Programs

  • On-the-Road Programs are brought into schools upon request, and current On-the-Road Programs are listed below:
    • Carnivorous Plants (1st-3rd grades)
    • Coastal Habitats (1st-3rd grades)
    • Marine Litter Stewardship/Microplastics (4th-6th grades)
    • Invasive Species (4th-6th grades)
    • Fire Ecology (4th-6th grades)
    • Water Quality/Water Limbo (4th-8th grades)*
    • Energy Pyramid/Food Chain (4th-8th grades)*
    • Estuaries- What are they? (4th-8th grades)*
    • Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill 2010 (4th-8th grades)*
    • Enviroscape/Water Pollution (4th-8th grades)*

* Denotes lesson plans found in Estuaries 101 Curriculum.

  • Career Days Exhibits may be set up in your schools in order to promote careers in estuarine science fields.  Our booth usually consists of one of our staff members demonstrating an activity that encourages students to consider one of the many fields of science as a career choice.  Recommended Audience: Middle and High School
  • Science Fair Judging— Grand Bay NERR staff are more than happy to judge your science fair, with advance notice to make sure of staff availability. We are happy to judge Elementary, Middle and High School science fairs.

To learn more about On-the-Road programs and Career Day exhibits, please contact K-12 Specialist Rick Ranew at Rick.Ranew@dmr.ms.gov.

To request science fair judges, please contact Education Coordinator Avery Sward at Avery.Sward@dmr.ms.gov.


Onsite Programs

Student Field Experiences are held on a first come first served reservation basis or as the need arises.  Teachers are required to participate in each of the adventures.

  • On-the-Road Programs typically begin in the classroom and continue onsite at the Grand Bay NERR, but programs are also offered onsite without a classroom visit. Current On-the-Road Programs are listed below:
    • Carnivorous Plants (1st-3rd grades)
    • Coastal Habitats (1st-3rd grades)
    • Marine Litter Stewardship/Microplastics (4th-6th grades)
    • Invasive Species (4th-6th grades)
    • Fire Ecology (4th-6th grades)
    • Water Quality/Water Limbo (4th-8th grades)*
    • Energy Pyramid/Food Chain (4th-8th grades)*
    • Estuaries- What are they? (4th-8th grades)*
    • Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill 2010 (4th-8th grades)*
    • Enviroscape/Water Pollution (4th-8th grades)*

* Denotes lesson plans found in Estuaries 101 Curriculum.

  • Camp Groups are welcome to spend a day (public hours are 9 am – 3 pm, M-F) at Grand Bay NERR participating in activities in the classroom and outside. While Grand Bay NERR does not offer our own camp experiences, we are more than happy to support others by providing programming. Counselors and chaperones are required to participate in each of the adventures and will assume responsibility for all campers in the groups. Past groups to visit Grand Bay NERR include the MS Museum of Natural Science, IMMS, and MGCCC Estuarine Education Center summer camps.

 

To learn more about On-the-Road program onsite Grand Bay NERR field trip visits, please contact K-12 Specialist Rick Ranew at Rick.Ranew@dmr.ms.gov.

For inquiries about bringing your camp group to Grand Bay NERR, please contact Avery Sward at Avery.Sward@dmr.ms.gov at least TWO months before your anticipated scheduled event.