Education and Outreach

For more information about our programs contact our Education and Visitor Center team at seacenter@tpwd.texas.gov.

Field Trips and Hatchery Tours

Field Trips

Sea Center Texas (SCT) offers guided field trips that can accommodate visitors of all ages and up to 60 participants. SCT has provided field trips for daycares, scout packs, high school science classes, nature clubs, senior centers, and more. Larger groups will need to split into smaller groups of about 15 people each upon arrival. Depending on your group’s needs, field trips may include tours of the hatchery, aquariums, and wetlands. A story time session may replace the hatchery tour for groups with mostly children younger than 8 years old. In the event of inclement weather, an alternative activity may replace the wetland tour.

Hatchery Tours

Find out all about how TPWD and Sea Center Texas are raising and releasing juvenile red drum, spotted seatrout, and southern flounder into the wild. On this behind-the-scenes tour your group will learn about the life cycles of these sportfish while getting an up-close look at eggs, larvae, and broodstock. Tour group size is limited to 15 people at a time; hatchery tours are recommended for ages 8 years and older.

Ready to reserve a date and time for your group? Please fill out this field trip/tour request form to get started.

 

Story Time

A woman reading a book

Bring your little ones and join Sea Center Texas for our story times sessions (see calendar for details). Participants will enjoy a reading of coastal wildlife-themed stories, explore real examples of animals and habitats seen in the picture books, and create a craft to take home (subject to availability). Story time is well suited for children ages 3-8 years old. Youth must always be accompanied by an adult.

 

Summer Camp

Children dissecting a squid

Keep your kiddos active and learning each summer with Sea Center’s fun and educational summer camp series. On select Fridays throughout June, July, and August, campers take part in marine science experiments, squid dissections, wetland bug collections, behind-the-scenes tours, and so much more! Inquire for dates and registration fees.

 

Fourth Grade Program

Is your fourth-grade class looking for a unique field trip, specifically designed to target 4th grade curriculum standards? Sea Center Texas offers a one-of-a-kind, TEKS-aligned, exploratory school program that affords student the opportunity to learn about coastal habitats, fish life cycles, and the conservation work conducted by Sea Center’s fish hatchery. Program limited to 75 students. Offered on Wednesdays and Fridays during the school semesters. Must be registered by the start of school term. Inquire for more details and guidelines.

 

Distance Learning

A woman holding a crab

Connect with real scientists and bring marine science education to your classroom through Sea Center’s virtual learning programs. Our online offerings are updated every school year, and you can find a current list of programs on our host platform, Connect2Texas. From marine food webs, to fish morphology, to wetland water science, we offer a variety of TEKS aligned programs for all grade levels. Sea Center Texas’ distance learning programs are always free.    

 

Fishing Opportunities

A little girl has caught a fish

Two types of fishing events are offered at Sea Center Texas, both with the goal of providing educational fun and lasting memories for children and their families.

Public Fishing

Catch-and-release public fishing events are held three times a year in February, June, and September. The purpose of these events is to provide an opportunity for youth (16 years & younger) to share a fishing experience with a parent or guardian while enjoying the great outdoors. Youth must always be accompanied by an adult. Volunteers will be available to answer questions and help land and release fish. Participants are required to bring their own rods, reels, rigging, bait, and food and drinks, chairs, etc. No fishing license required, no artificial bait or barbed hooks allowed.

Andrew Sansom Youth Fishing Pond

The Andrew Sansom Youth Fishing Pond located at Sea Center Texas (SCT) is available for small group fishing. Texas Parks and Wildlife Department provides an opportunity for school children and other special groups to learn about our great coastal resources and to participate in an outdoor fishing activity. This opportunity is limited to small groups of 10 – 20 participants and is geared toward student field trips, special education, scout packs, nursing homes, etc. This opportunity is not available for birthday parties or friend groups. Refundable $50 deposit required. 

 

Angler Education

Learn to fish at Sea Center Texas. Basic fishing classes introduce participants to fishing equipment, knot tying and tackle assembly, casting skills, fish ID and habitats, regulations and ethics, and safety and stewardship. Participants 17 and younger will receive a Texas Parks and Wildlife Basic Angler certificate of completion and a Basic Angler fish pin. Students will end the day with a new knowledge of safe and ethical fishing practices. Sea Center Texas Angler Ed programs are currently limited to school groups, and requests for courses must be made at least 8 weeks in advance.

 

Offsite Outreach

A man works at a booth

Sea Center Texas attends various outdoor education events and nature-themed festivals throughout the area. SCT has a number of informative and interactive displays that showcase coastal wildlife, including our popular portable touch tank. Inquire for requirements and availability.

 

Education Trunk Rentals 

Sea Center Texas is a part of the TPWD Loaner Trunk program. These trunks are available for loan, free of charge, to formal and informal educators and youth leaders. Each trunk contains activities and materials appropriate for multiple age level groups. 

 

Special Events

Santa Claus scuba diving

Throughout the year, our facility hosts four special events that focus on nature education and family fun. Check our calendar and Facebook page for dates.

Nature Day 

Nature Day, hosted every spring, is a family-oriented event that showcases environmental organizations from the greater Houston area. Our goal is to introduce the public to the many facets of conservation, restoration, and stewardship. If you are interested in becoming a Nature Day vendor, get in touch with us through email. 

Shark Week 

Shark Weekend, aka the most fin-tastic weekend of the year, is a two-day shark celebration held at Sea Center every summer. The mission is to highlight sharks as important components of healthy marine ecosystems. Children’s activities, special guest speakers, and real shark encounters ensure our visitors leave with a new appreciation and respect for the ocean’s greatest predators.

Sea Center Spooktacular 

It wouldn’t be fall without a spectacular Halloween Spooktacular. Join us to learn about the fascinating marine life in the eerie ocean deep, view real animal skulls and skeletons, discover what makes animal eyes glow in the dark, and so much more! Come in your favorite Halloween getup, as we’ll round out the day with a costume contest and copious amounts of candy for the best dressed.

Christmas with the Fishes  

Have you ever seen a scuba diving Santa Claus or an underwater Christmas show? Christmas with the Fishes is a one-of-kind holiday experience that is sure to dazzle the crowd. Guests look on as elves decorate the underwater Christmas tree while Santa swims around the Gulf aquarium interacting with the audience. Admission to this event is free, but guests are encouraged to bring a canned goods item for our food drive.