About us

What is Ocean School?

Ocean School is a free environmental education resource for students in grades 5–12. Our inspiring and immersive multimedia resources featuring linear and 360˚ videos, VR/AR, interactive media and hands-on projects and activities are offered in English and French. Our cross-curricular content spans science, social studies, language arts and more!

What is Ocean School?

Our mission

Our mission

Ocean School’s mission is to help everyone understand our influence on the ocean and the ocean’s influence on us. We engage learners in the world of ocean science, enterprise and culture to foster generations of engaged, ocean-literate global citizens.

Our mission

Two divers examining coral underwater.

Our story

Dr. Boris Worm (Dalhousie University) and producer Paul McNeill (National Film Board), the cofounders of the project, looked out at the ocean in Duncan’s Cove, Nova Scotia, and dreamt of creating a dynamic educational experience that would inspire young minds and transform their relationship with the ocean and its many inhabitants.

Work on Ocean School began in 2015 with a pilot expedition to Cocos Island, Costa Rica. The resulting content was an excellent proof of concept and led to the creation of an initial prototype in 2016. The following 18 months were dedicated to creating a critical mass of engaging content and activities. Ocean School’s online platform launched in October of 2018 thanks to generous investments by the Province of Nova Scotia and the Canadian Department of Fisheries and Oceans.

Since then, Ocean School has hosted almost half a million learning sessions and has welcomed visitors online from over 100 countries thanks to a wide variety of partners both in Canada and abroad.

In 2021, Ocean School proudly became a program of Dalhousie University’s Ocean Frontier Institute and serves as its principal ocean literacy initiative.

The Ocean School team works at the intersection of science, education and storytelling seeking to create unique and innovative learning resources using a wide variety of media and technologies. Given the passion of the people involved and the strength of their deep commitment, that intersection is a pretty exciting place to be.

Our journey is just beginning!

What we do

Ocean School is anchored in an inquiry-based learning approach, which is specifically designed to strengthen learners’ inquiry, collaboration, critical thinking, and problem solving skills.

Ocean School empowers learners by reinforcing their ability to take meaningful action and to create positive change—both now and in the future and exposes learners to a diverse array of marine and STEM careers.

What we do

Tools for public engagement

We offer a variety of resources and workshop kits to help educators teach ocean concepts in the classroom and engage students in hands-on learning experiences.

Tools for public engagement

Events and professional development

We also host and attend live events, collaborate with partners, and offer professional development opportunities for educators through webinars and conferences. Our website offers synchronous and asynchronous support, offering both live and recorded webinars and a comprehensive help centre.

We hope you will join us in our efforts to advance ocean literacy and foster the next generation of ocean champions!

Events and professional development

Meet the team

Our founding institutions

National Film Board of Canada

The NFB is Canada’s public producer of award-winning creative documentaries, auteur animation, interactive stories and participatory experiences. The NFB is a leader in gender equity in film and digital media production, and is working to strengthen Indigenous-led production, guided by the recommendations of Canada’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission. NFB productions have won over 7,000 awards, including 18 Canadian Screen Awards, 17 Webbys, 12 Oscars and more than 100 Genies.

Learn more about NFB's educational programming

Ocean Frontier Institute

The Ocean Frontier Institute, established in 2016, is a partnership led by Dalhousie University, Memorial University of Newfoundland, and University of Prince Edward Island.

Ocean Frontier Institute’s vision is to be a global leader in transnational interdisciplinary ocean research, producing demonstrable and enduring social, economic, and environmental benefits.

The Institute is now an international entity administering the Canada First Research Excellence Fund—The Safe and Sustainable Development of the Ocean Frontier, the Ocean Graduate Excellence Network (OGEN), Ocean School, and the North Atlantic Carbon Observatory (NACO).

Find out more about Ocean Frontier Institute’s research

Awards

Numix Awards

Something about the category we were in.

Numix Awards

Webby People's Voice Award

Something about the category we were in.

Check out The Webby Awards page on Ocean School

Japan Prize

Something about the category we were in.

Japan Prize