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Marine Science

Marine Science Program at Saint Mary Star of the Sea School, Hampton, VA

The Marine Science Program consists of two components at Saint Mary Star of the Sea School, a Consensus Curriculum component and an extra-curricular component.

Activities and concepts listed in the Science portion of the Consensus Curriculum ( for PreK- Grade 8 are supported with the Marine Science Lab located on Mill Creek (a James River tributary) at Saint Mary Star of the Sea School. For example, Geoscience, a science course taught in Grade 8 lists “investigate and understand the rock cycle as it relates to the origin and transformation of rock types and how to identify common rock types based on mineral composition and textures” (GS 5, Richmond Diocese Consensus Curriculum). The Marine Science Lab is used during the study of this concept to investigate the physical characteristics of sediments and how air and water currents can determine the sediment properties.

Saint Mary Star of the Sea School also offers a Marine Science Club which meets after school approximately every 6 weeks. The club works with the City of Hampton Clean City Commission working to collect trash along our shoreline and examine the data which is analyzed by city engineers. The activity (one of several in which the Marine Science Club is involved) is part of the C.H.A.R.T.  (City of Hampton to Reduce Trash) program.

Saint Mary Star of the Sea has adopted the Nancy Larson® Science program in grades K-5.

Our science teachers have the benefit of using the campus' unique surroundings - the Mill Creek shoreline - to adapt their Diocesan Science Curriculum Standards with the Nancy Larson Science Program to enhance student's hands on learning through critical thinking, creativity, collaboration, and communication. 

Nancy Larson® Science programs were created to help teachers provide challenging and meaningful science content to elementary-age children. The topics chosen for each grade level reflect children’s interests and developmental characteristics.

  • Science K: Focuses on the children and their interaction with the world around them. 
  • Science 1: Focuses on life science and the children’s environment. As children grow older, their interests broaden. 
  • Science 2: Focuses on physical science and the way things work.
  • Science 3: Children explore the world beyond their immediate environment as they study earth and space science.
  • Science 4: Focuses on organisms and their interactions as well as forms of energy. 
  • Science 5: Focuses on the interactions of systems on a micro- and macro-scale.

Our programs ensure an in-depth study of topics that help promote long-term learning and understanding of concepts. Lessons build upon one another with the understanding that different sciences are interrelated. For this reason, we are not a “pick and choose” science topics program but a complete science program that will help students have a broader understanding of science.


(Adapted from

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