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With the potentially destruc- tive consequences of climate changeand lossofbiodiversity there could not be a better time for greater scientific un- derstanding of our oceans. We know that there are ma- jor changes occurring in Mala- spina Strait and throughout- the northern Georgia Strait and Salish Sea but there are huge gaps in our knowledge. Without up-to-date knowl- edge and the application of ground breaking scientific discoveries and technologies we are all left in the dark. By 2020 PODS will welcome residents students and visi- torsofallagesfromaroundthe world to the heart of Madeira Park to help shed light on the oceans around us and to give our children roots and wings. The PODS Project Partnering in Education IMAGINE THE POSSIBILITIES Elementary The existing relation- ships and connections developed over the last 10 years of Nature School programming will aid in the development of a new Aquaschool program at PODS. Based on The Open Minds Education concept our program directors and facilita- tors will connect with teachers in schools throughout the region to help achieve curriculum outcomes that will also connect to the ex- isting programs at the Vancouver Aquarium Marine Science Centre. Teachers will have an opportuni- ty to host their class in the PODS wetlab and to meet with research- ers working at our marine research facility. Students will be able to ex- perience what research feels like and to see how it is conceived and undertaken by professional scien- tists creating an unforgettable con- ceptual link for any aspiring young scientist. Most programs will be designed to be 1 to 3 hour sessions in the wetlab classroom PODS gal- leries and display areas or outdoors in the field. Pre-visit and follow up activities will be designed to reflect key topics in marine and freshwa- ter science and timely conservation issues. We will welcome opportunities to collaborate and coordinate with ex- isting programs such as those op- erated by the Sunshine Coast Wild- life Project the Botanical Garden Society the NEST program based out of Davis Bay Elementary and the future Marine Education Cen- tre at the Gibsons Public Market. Secondary We will create place- and project-based culturally-rel- evant hands-on biological experi- ences for local secondary schools. Our environmental stewardship courses will help complement ma- rine biological components of the existing curriculum and include outdoor recreation opportunities for example to explore careers in fisheries management marine sciences and even scuba instruc- tion. Having a living lab available to students as opposed to watching dockside while species are brought to the surface for display is a strong incentive for inquisitive minds as anyone who has spent their child- hood exploring rock pools along our wonderful coast knows only too well. All of these possibilities for widening the curriculum of grade 11 and 12 biology applied 05