The Center for Aquatic Sciences offers in-person and virtual camp programs at Adventure Aquarium for ages 4 through 14. Camp programs are offered in the summer and on select holidays throughout the year. Campers participate in age-appropriate science activities, games, explorations, and up-close animal encounters. For information on camp program offerings, visit the Center for Aquatic Sciences’ Camp Overview
Learn all about history, science, and how to row or kayak on the Delaware River at Independence Seaport Museum. Perfect for ages 6-12, Seaport Summer Camp features full days of activities and exploration on the water.
Every week is a new discovery at the Seaport, with an in-depth look into the science and history of Philadelphia and its waterways. In addition to weekly hands-on activities and crafts, campers also:
- Visit the J. Welles Henderson Archives and Library to examine artifacts not typically on display
- Tour the Delaware River with a cruise from Patriot Harbor Lines
- Paddle and row on the water every day (weather permitting)
City Wild is a summer camp for curious kids ages 10-13 that offers two-week sessions of off-the-beaten-path-adventures and behind-the-scenes excursions through Philly’s neighborhoods to explore nature in the urban environment.
Bartram’s Garden partners with The ECO Foundation to offer Royal By Nature, a free summer camp program serving children and youth living in West and Southwest Philly. Young people work side by side with the children they serve to grow food, fish, and connect with nature and each other. In addition, they take courses designed to holistically educate, empower, and inspire them.
Since 1988 thousands of children have participated in activities that include exploring arts and nature, crafts, Bible study, recreation, life skills workshops, academic enrichment classes, and community service. Around 450 children participate in our six-week Summer Camps located in eight city neighborhoods. Within a safe and stimulating environment, these programs provide opportunities for children to improve their academic performance, develop necessary life skills, create positive relationships with caring adults, explore the arts, and nurture their faith. Summer camp favorite activities include weekly field trips (typically to paddling with RiverGuides and nature hikes with Trekkers), the Summer Carnival, and All Camp Day.,
Glen Foerd’s Teen Arts after-school program was created for high school students with the aim to empower them through collaborative art-making and historical inquiry, and to foster interest in and appreciation of the arts. With a behind-the-scenes look at the historic estate, the students examine artifacts from Glen Foerd’s collection and explore themes that relate history to the present. From this foundation, participants will execute original creative projects, harnessing their individual skills and interests to collaboratively produce a culminating exhibition of their work. The teen-led creative framework facilitates self-exploration and the development of cooperative team skills while exposing participants to Philadelphia’s history and culture.
The Camden Shipyard & Maritime Museum was founded in 2008 to transform an 1893 historic church into a local maritime history museum and home for the Urban BoatWorks program, a vibrant craft program that now serves over 100 students per week. The museum opened to rave reviews in 2016 and the former church rectory was renovated in 2017 for a new Shipyard Worker Exhibit and residences for nonprofit workers.
ProFESS, formerly the Philadelphia Watershed Stewardship (PWS) program, is an initiative originally run in partnership with the Philadelphia Water Department to empower high school students to become environmental scientists and stewards. LandHealth supports students in ProFESS to become change-makers, scientists, leaders, advocates and stewards for a better tomorrow, through natural history, urban ecology, and watershed health. Centered in immersive, exploration-based learning–at-the-source–to better understand the plants, animals, soil, water, and air of our city. ProFESS offers opportunities for students to share what they learn with community groups and the general public, becoming ambassadors for green spaces and clean water.
ProFESS started in Cobbs Creek, home to vibrant communities in west Philadelphia, its historically preserved hundreds of acres of open space offset by mass industrialization and modernization. In Cobbs and citywide, our watersheds have suffered from hundreds of years of polluted stormwater runoff, inadequate drainage systems, leaking septic tanks, illegal dumping, and other ills. This is where ProFESS comes in!
Using the river and land between the Ben Franklin Bridge and Pier 70 as the classroom, Deep is designed to enhance appreciation of natural systems, the built environment, and the complex interactions between the two. In applying these skills, participants are exposed to the basics of ecology, urban planning, landscape design, river properties, geology, history, hydrology, and soil.
Little Explorers is a monthly garden adventure for toddlers (ages 2−4) and their caregivers. Programs include crafts, snacks, performances, and an exciting exploration in the garden.
Homeschooler Days are for homeschooled students, ages 5–13, and meets monthly, with both morning and afternoon sessions to choose from. This year’s topics range from botany to colonial cooking, from navigation to creating music from birdsong!
Tales in the Grass is a free drop-in program for preschoolers and their caregivers the first Thursday of the month 10-11 AM. Explore nature through children’s literature, hands-on activities, science and artmaking in an outdoor setting.
Day and night, we have lots of activities for Scouts to explore at the Seaport Museum. Perfect for Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts or Girl Scouts, our Seaport Slumbers and day programs allow you to work towards a loop or badge, get out on the Delaware River, explore National Historic Landmark Ships Cruiser Olympia and Submarine Becuna, connect with our exhibits and more. Our scouting programs include:
- Finding Your Way (Cub Scouts)
- Playing the Past (Girl Scouts)
- Signs, Signals and Codes (Boy Scouts)
- Wonders of the Water (Girl Scouts)
- Woodworker (Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts)
The Citizen Science Lab, now part of River Alive! at Independence Seaport Museum, hosts hands-on, interactive experiences centered around water, with a focus on the Delaware River’s biology, ecology and chemistry, plus language arts, history and basic engineering. Public demonstrations for the whole family take place every Saturday and Sunday at 11 a.m., 2 p.m. and 3:30 p.m., with additional weekday sessions from May through August.
Join the Center for Aquatic Sciences at Adventure Aquarium for an awesome overnight experience, Shark in the Dark! Experience the Aquarium’s amazing shark collection, as well as sea turtles, stingrays and a multitude of different fish. After your adventure, you’ll spend the night sleeping up close with one of these amazing aquatic animals. The next morning, you’ll get a chance to visit with our African penguins and hippos. It’s a shark-tastic experience you’ll never forget!
EAGLE is a four-year program exclusively for young high school women that takes students with a strong interest in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM), and presents them with challenges in a hands-on and fun team setting.
The River Ambassadors program provides intensive, hands-on science learning experiences for Philadelphia high school students at Independence Seaport Museum. Students participate in the River Ambassadors program at the Museum to learn as much as possible about Philadelphia’s surrounding rivers and watershed and why and how to protect them.
Whether you’re looking for a quick introduction to marine science, or you want to get more in-depth and hands-on with biology and environmental topics, our STEM-based teen programs offer a variety of options for students ages 12 and up. From 3-hour glimpses, to monthly sessions, or 2 week camp experiences, these unique programs enable future ocean scientists a great way to gain experience and knowledge outside of their science classroom.
SeaPerch is a nationally recognized, innovative underwater robotics program that presents an engaging platform for developing student interest in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematical) fields. Independence Seaport Museum proudly serves as a mentoring, assembly, education, and testing facility for local teams.
Connect students with science and enhance your field trip to Adventure Aquarium with an engaging education program. The Center for Aquatic Sciences at Adventure Aquarium offers programs that inspire future conservationists while supporting your curriculum. To book a program for your class at the aquarium, call 800-616-JAWS (5297).
Seaport Slumbers invites guests to an overnight adventure in the Museum or on our historic ships, Cruiser Olympia and World War II and Cold War Submarine Becuna. Guests begin their evening with a tour of the ships. Themed activities inside the museum offer a new way to connect to our exhibits. Later in the night, guests roll out sleeping bags to sleep among the museum’s exhibits or on Cruiser Olympia, between the months of May and October.
The SAILOR STEM Boatbuilding initiative connects under-served middle and high school students in the Philadelphia area to the water. This program targets young minds to encourage interest and understanding in Engineering, Mathematics, and the Sciences in addition to team building, problem solving, and leadership.