Community Science Field trips

Grades 5-12

In this hands-on outdoors program, students will visit the Lowlands Nursery and become community scientists, as they test water quality parameters, contribute to publicly-available data, and explore how Atlantic ribbed mussels contribute to healthier waterways. Students will advocate for the canal with a vote regarding their values of NYC waterways. Teachers will receive pre- and post-visit materials to accompany their trip experience.



Students will be able to:

  • Explain how Combined Sewer Overflow events affect the canal and waterway health
  • Measure and record water quality parameters using testing equipment
  • Interpret & explain their results of the water quality test they perform
  • Model & explain the important role Atlantic ribbed mussels play in the Gowanus Canal
  • Determine if the Gowanus is a healthy waterbody
  • Act as stewards and advocates for the Canal and other NYC waterways


  • Combined Sewer Overflow diagram analysis
  • Water Quality Data collection
  • Atlantic ribbed mussel demonstration & exploration
  • Student waterway advocacy vote

All activities are aligned with New York State Learning Standards.


Tuesdays & Thursdays, Mid-September through November, 10:00 AM – 11:30 AM.  Additional dates may be available; check our booking calendar for details.


Lowlands Nursery, 25 9th Street, Brooklyn 11215. This program takes place outdoors.

Class Size & Chaperones:

We are able to welcome up to 35 students per trip. We require a 1:10, teacher:student ratio.


We welcome and embrace diverse learners! Please let us know of any accommodations needed and ways for us to help prepare your students for their field trip.

Program Cost:

  • All NYC Title I public schools or schools that demonstrate at least 50% economic need (DOE index): Free
  • Other NYC public schools: $200
  • NYC private schools: $350

A sliding scale is available upon request. 

Questions? Need more information? Contact us via email at education[@]gowanuscanalconservancy[dot]org.

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Funding for this program is provided by Con Edison, New York – New Jersey Harbor & Estuary Program (HEP), and the NYS Environmental Protection Fund as administered by a grant from the New York State DEC Environmental Justice Community Impact grant program.