The Dauphin Island Sea Lab offers a variety of programs for children during the summer. From single-day programs to overnight camps and academic courses, these programs give campers a deeper look at our ocean and our coastal resources. Our highly qualified educators will guide campers and students through all activities, and residential students are well-supervised by our exceptional counselors.
---Summer Day Camps---
For ages 5-8
June 2 or July 6, 2023
Cost: $45 per student
The Gulf of Mexico offers a wealth of material for developing minds and curious senses in "Ocean's Alive," a half-day adventure for children ages 5 through 8 and their parents/grandparents. Combining arts and crafts with a beach walk adventure, the educators at the Dauphin Island Sea Lab usher children and adults into a deeper appreciation of the marvelous Alabama coast. Lessons in marine biology, ecology, and zoology are introduced in hands-on activities so fun, your children will discover that learning can be a blast.
For ages 8-10
June 1 or June 15, 2023
Cost: $60 per student
This day-long camp for ages 8-10 turns campers into Barrier Island Observers. Campers will set out on an expedition across many of the diverse habitats of Dauphin Island, including the beach, salt marsh, and maritime forest. They will document their findings, through various creative media, along with their journey. While exploring barrier island ecology, students should be prepared to get wet, sandy, and muddy.
For ages: 9-11
June 9 or July 7, 2023
In this single-day camp, we explore the world of ocean technology through hands-on e(nvironmental)-STEM activities! Campers will get their feet wet using some of the tools scientists use to study the oceans, including underwater robots, drones, and GPS along our beaches. Back inside, campers will be challenged to design and build circuits in a creative make-and-take activity focusing on deep-sea animals. (*Activities are not water-focused, but some areas we visit may be wet or muddy.)
Survivor: Dauphin Island
For ages 10-13
June 8, July 5, or July 21, 2023
Cost: $60 per student (parent attendance permitted, but not required)
Join us for a 'reel' adventure and put your survival skills to the test. Campers, ages 10-13 years old, will learn about Alabama's fishes, which ones are edible, how to toss a cast net, how to bait a crab trap, how to drag a seine, and how to bring in the catch of the day while pier fishing. Campers will also get up close and personal with their catches as they learn about each different species brought ashore! You never know exactly what you’ll reel in! There will be swim time and an afternoon snack provided in addition to frequent water breaks.
For rising 7th-8th grade
June 11-14, 2023
Cost: $450 (see more details below)
Calling all technology sleuths! If you are interested in robotics and engineering then this camp is for you! Students, rising 7th through 8th grade, will uncover marine technology through hands-on activities including how to build a simple robot, solder components on a circuit board, design and build a remotely operated vehicle (ROV) for a mini competition, and much more!! In this 4-day, 3-night camp students will bring out their inner deTECHtive to discover 'what is technology? The camp will feature various hands-on group activities encouraging students to think like an engineer. The stakes are high as they design, build and test various technologies in preparation for an underwater robot challenge.
Coastal Fisheries Camp
For rising 9th-12th grades
May 28-June 2, 2023
Cost: $920 (more details below)
The School of Fisheries, Aquaculture and Aquatic Sciences, The Fisheries Learning Center, and the Dauphin Island Sea Lab have partnered to offer Coastal Fisheries Camp. This camp will be held on the Dauphin Island Sea Lab campus at Dauphin Island, Alabama. The Coastal Fisheries Camp is a fun and intense 5-day academic camp that introduces high school students to the marine environment. Students will stay in the dorms on the DISL campus and participate in a variety of academic activities. Students will have the opportunity to observe and work with plankton nets, seine nets, water sampling bottles, refractometers and water quality test kits, and other equipment. They will also collect and identify marine species from various habitats and participate in lab and field discussions, all under the guidance of marine and aquatic educators from Auburn University and Dauphin Island Sea Lab. A great deal of time will be spent in the field exploring and examining different marine communities. Field activities include the exploration of a salt marsh community, beach profiling, and trawling aboard the Dauphin Island Sea Lab's 65-foot research vessel, the R/V Alabama Discovery.
Gulf Island Journey
For rising 7th-9th grades
June 4-9(FULL), June 25-30, July 9-14, or July 16-21, 2023
Cost: $650 (more details below)
This week-long residential camp is geared toward rising 7th through 9th graders. Campers will have fun exploring areas of Dauphin Island, Mobile Bay, Mississippi Sound, and the northern Gulf of Mexico learning about the animals, habitats, and issues confronting the Alabama coast and the world’s oceans. With the guidance of our experienced marine science educators, the campers will learn about our oceans through a variety of hands-on and in-the-field activities. Explore Mobile Bay aboard the R/V Alabama Discovery, seine for fish, dissect a shark, see plankton up close, visit Sand Island, and enjoy the island’s famous snow cones! Campers return year after year for this unique experience.
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Phone 1: 251-861-2141
Email: Click to email us
Web: Click to visit us online
Minimum Age: 5
Maximum Age: 18
Year Established: 1971
Lodging Available: Yes - call or visit site for more information.
Average Cost Per Week:
See above camps listed or visit our website for more information.
Camp Length: Varies per camp
Season Starts: May 28, 2023
Season Ends: July 21, 2023
Camp Activities: Academics, Active Learning Games, Aquatic Activities, Marine Science, Nature & Environmental Studies