Student Programs on the Explorer Riverboat

Bridges of Pittsburgh

Grades: 3–6 | Program Length: 2 Hours | Cost: $13.50 / Student
Availability: March–December

Observation, playful exploration and guided discussion help young students discover basic engineering principles while examining the details and designs of some of Pittsburgh’s most prominent bridges. Students compare various types of bridge structures, consider the durability of their construction materials, and participate in shared learning experiences, including model bridge building and river map navigation. This Explorer excursion on all three rivers is simply loaded with teachable moments!

Students examine the Smithfield Street Bridge. 

Environmental Science on the Three Rivers

Grades: 4–12 | Program Length: 3 Hours or 4.5 Hours | Cost:$15 / Student (3 Hours); $25 / Student (4.5 Hours)

Starting with the construction of a hypothesis on the health of the rivers, students test their theory by applying scientific principles. Using living and nonliving indicators of water quality, students analyze and correlate their results with industrial and photographic records of the historical land use of Pittsburgh’s river valleys. The process serves as a springboard for exploring issues of current land use and river health, sustainability, and green design.

Classroom registration includes usage of the Captain’s Science Resource Chest and complimentary admission for the companion Act 48 workshop (one teacher included for every 30 registered students.)

A black teenage girl with long braids in a denim jacket looks into a microscope.

A teen is looking for living indicators of water quality using a microscope and water samples.

Uniquely Pittsburgh Sightseeing Tour

Grades: 7–12 | Program Length: 1.5 Hours | Cost: $12 / Student
Availability: March–December

Ever wonder what makes Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh? This tour sets out to answer that question as it explores a sense of place, uncovering how Pittsburgh’s unique history contributed to the dynamic city it is today. Traveling on the Ohio, Monongahela, and Allegheny Rivers, students learn the big stories of our region’s past, from its geology to its industry, while also hearing about its many lesser-known citizens who helped shape the region…and the world! This program offers a great way to experience the city—past and present!

Five boys look out from the boat towards the science center with downtown and a stadium in the background

Boys on Explorer during a Uniquely Pittsburgh Sightseeing Tour.

It’s Alive!

Grades: K–3 | Program Length: 2 Hours | Cost: $13.50 / Student
Availability: March–December

Even the youngest of students can discover the scientific world around them in this hands-on program that focuses on aquatic animal adaptations and the dynamic river food chain. Using microscopes and binoculars, students will search for
life in and along our rivers—from plankton to birds of prey! All the while, these junior naturalists will be discovering the interconnected web of life that relies on a healthy ecosystem.

Book early! Contact us to schedule

a learning experience for your students with Rivers of Steel.