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Maritime Aquarium Offers Spring Break Programs For Kids

Learning about river otters – and making “enrichment toys” for them – are among the activities for kids during The Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk’s “Spring Vacation Adventures” programs.
Learning about river otters – and making “enrichment toys” for them – are among the activities for kids during The Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk’s “Spring Vacation Adventures” programs. Photo Credit: Maritime Aquarium

NORWALK, Conn. – Children ages 6-12 can plunge into the world of sharks and aquatic mammals, do the real work of marine biologists and lots more in a series of fun programs during the upcoming school vacation week April 11-15 at The Maritime Aquarium at Norwalk.

The aquarium’s “Spring Vacation Adventures” invite younger students (ages 6-8) to explore a different topic involving our watery world each day. Ages 9-12 can dabble in the activities of real marine biologists, from fish dissections to aquarium set-up and maintenance. All programs meet from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.

To accommodate parents’ busy schedules, the aquarium offers pre-care from 8:30-9:30 a.m. and post-care from 4-5:30 p.m.

For ages 6-8, the daily schedule is:

April 11 – “Ocean Mammals.” Children learn how otters, seals and whales are adapted to their watery world. Highlights include attending a private seal feeding and the chance to talk to the seal trainers. They'll also see humpback whales life-size on the giant IMAX® screen.

April 12 – “Reptiles.” Compare turtles of land and sea to discover how they adapt to their terrestrial and aquatic lifestyles. They’ll visit the turtle exhibits, examine the look and feel of turtle artifacts, play a nesting game and get to meet/touch a live turtle ambassador.

April 13 – “Sound Art.” Nature and science will be brought to life through art. Start the day visiting exhibits and seeking touch experiences to get inspiration. Then students will create a fossil, draw cartoon marine animals, paint a watercolor scene and more. Participants should bring a smock.

April 14 – “Shark Safari.” Get a real feel for sharks at the shark and ray touch pool. Kids will discover sharks’ special adaptations, meet live shark, see how the aquarium cares for its resident sharks and more.

April 15 – “Junior Aquarist.” Children will have hands-on experiences with animals, including turtles and sea stars. They’ll meet a seal trainer and attend a private seal feeding. Activities include aquarium-themed games and making a toy.

For ages 9-12, the five-day program “Junior Marine Biologist" shows students the inner workings of the aquarium’s animal-husbandry staff, with the goal of setting up, stocking, feeding and maintaining an aquarium display of Long Island Sound marine life. They’ll use water-chemistry meters to monitor water quality, grow brine shrimp to feed their animals and participate in squid and fish dissections.

The cost of a “Spring Vacation Adventures” program is $100 per day or $90 for aquarium members. Pre-care is $20 additional per day or $85 for the week. Post-care is $40 per day or $170 for the week. Aquarium members receive discounts. Children should bring a snack, a bag lunch and an appetite for adventure.

For reservations or more details, call (203) 852-0700 Ext. 2206 or online .

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