In celebration of the new school year, Mote Marine Laboratory & Aquarium hosted an Educator Open House to thank teachers for the important work they do in the community and to share some of the new resources and experiences that have been created to enhance student’s learning at Mote’s current location and the future Mote Science Education Aquarium.

The event featured 14 interactive displays to familiarize teachers with the variety of Mote Education resources available to them including field trips, virtual programs, outreach programs, classroom kits, online video and curriculum libraries and more.

“We were really excited to highlight all the amazing resources available to educators,” said Mote’s Director of Education, Elaina Wheaton. “Mote is not only a leader in marine research, but we also play a huge role in educating and building up the next generation of marine scientists.”

Over 50 educators from six counties attended, representing public, charter, and private schools, with more than 30% of those identified as Title I schools. Attendees were a mix of science, math, and general education teachers as well as district specialists and STEM directors involved in K through 12 education.

The Aquarium was open to explore the exhibits, meet other educators and enjoy some drinks and appetizers. Guests learned about Mote’s educational offerings for all ages from the Mote Education team and had the opportunity to win fantastic raffle prizes such as a free class field trip or SEA Trek Program!

“The experience was thoughtfully designed to celebrate teachers and showcase all the wonderful programs Mote has to support teachers in the work they do,” said K-5 Science Program Specialist, Cheri Dame. “I am truly grateful for Mote’s dedication to a strong partnership with the students and teachers of Sarasota County.”

Thank you to the Mote President’s Advisory Council and to our sponsors: Tina Gelmisi and Robert Vandergrift, Nick Gladding, Arthur Reilly, Jeffrey Steinsnyder and an anonymous donor.