Chattahoochee Riverkeeper offers two “floating classrooms,” one on Lake Lanier and another on West Point Lake. Together, these acclaimed environmental-education venues have successfully delivered unique and exceptional learning opportunities to more than 60,000 students and teachers.
Through these water-based learning centers, students engage in a variety of hands-on activities that incorporate STEM subjects (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math), and which are tied to age-appropriate Georgia Standards for Excellence.
What do they learn?
- Water-quality testing
- Identification of freshwater plankton and wildlife
- How lake water ends up flowing from faucets in homes and schools
- Ways they can protect these precious water resources
- Supplemental land-based watershed activities, and…
- Lake history lessons
To ensure a safe experience aboard our Floating Classrooms, we have a COVID-19 Preparedness Action Plan in place. Along with following CDC guidelines, we have reduced group sizes from a maximum of sixty participants to forty-five participants (and no more than fifteen participants on the boat at one time).
Program scholarship awards make it possible for thousands of financially disadvantaged students—from Title I schools and after-school and summer programs—to participate.
See the impact Floating Classrooms have on students and our community.
Lake Lanier Aquatic Learning Center
The Lake Lanier Aquatic Learning Center (LLALC), a partnership by CRK, Elachee Nature Science Center and Hall Co. Parks and Leisure is operated out of Hall County’s River Forks Park in Gainesville. The learning center resides aboard the Chota Princess II, a 40-foot custom-built catamaran—which boasts a glass-bottom viewing well and a capacity of up to 49 passengers.
Schedule a Program: contact Elachee at (770) 535-1976 or email@example.com.
Scholarship Inquiries: contact Becca Powell at (404) 352-9828 x19 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The LLALC’s curriculum is designed by Elachee Nature Science Center to be grade-level appropriate and complement classroom studies. All Elachee programs are correlated to Georgia’s Performance Standards and Criterion-Referenced Competency Tests (CRCT) and Gwinnett County’s Academic Knowledge and Skills (AKS) requirements. Elachee Nature Science Center is also Georgia’s first and metro-Atlanta’s only nature center accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS).
West Point Lake Floating Classroom
The West Point Lake Floating Classroom (WPLFC) program takes place aboard the Miss Sally – a 42-foot vessel certified to carry up to 44 passengers – and is the only experiential program of its kind to serve the Middle Chattahoochee region. Since launching the program in 2015, nearly 20,000 students, teachers and adults have participated in the program.
A key focus of the WPLFC program is to serve those who may not otherwise have the means to experience the program. Because of the generous support from public and private donors, we have provided more than 9,000 full scholarships to students in financial need and underserved youth participants of civic organizations. Depending on the number of outings in the year, our operating expenses are approximately $30 per participant. However, all other school and community groups benefit as well from additional donor support that allows us to subsidize program costs.
Scheduling and Scholarship Information: email@example.com, 706-882-3701
Thank you to our sponsors of the West Point Lake Floating Classroom:
Aflac | Alice H. Richards Foundation | Callaway Foundation | Charter Foundation | City of LaGrange | Diverse Power | Ray Anderson Foundation | Scott Hudgens Family Foundation | Southwire | Troup County School System | WestPoint Fund
The joy our students find in the floating classroom learning experience is invaluable. I cannot begin to express how these trips may have changed the lives of our kids!
– Lara McNeirney
4th grade teacher at Sandhill Elementary School