Imagine Your Day at the Living Lab
You awaken in your apartment to the sound of birds chirping from the canyon below. As you drink your first cup of coffee, you step out onto your balcony and gaze out over the roof of the Living Lab and into the canyon, where the early morning light filters through the trees. Looking across the canyon and up to busy Fairmount Avenue, you see a city bus picking up commuters, a garbage truck making its early morning rounds, and parents walking their children to school.
You may decide to start your day with a hike or jog through the canyon, or catch up on the news on your balcony. At 9:30, you hear music signaling the start of the daily morning announcements with Ocean Discovery staff, so you walk down to the lab’s community kitchen to join the group.
Then you walk downstairs to the Ocean Alcove, where the normal floor-to-ceiling ocean live stream is replaced by your presentation about your career. Soon, two 7th grade classes have arrived at the Lab, and small groups rotate through the building to engage in various activities, including an interactive presentation from you.
You break for lunch and a quick respite in your studio to recharge. At 3pm, music plays throughout the building to cue the start of public hours. A few minutes later, the first few students begin to trickle in with their parents. They grab a snack in the kitchen and then head downstairs, where they finish some homework alongside our volunteer “homework helpers” before joining one of the weekly science camps.
Some days, you may join in for homework help, or for Study Hall to help older students with science and math homework. Today, you join the weekly after-school science camp–today’s campers are 3rd and 4th graders. They are learning about kelp forests, and are excited to have a scientist alongside them today.
Ocean Discovery staff lead the activity and you help to answer any questions the students may have. Once the kids get the hang of the activity, they start asking you questions about your job and where you went to school. You strike up a particularly funny conversation with two students about embarrassing childhood memories. After a while, the students pack up their gear to head home, feeling a sense of accomplishment for having worked with a scientist and a new appreciation for what it means to do science and how science is meaningful to them.
Just before 7pm, the final music of the day begins to play, signaling the close of the Living Lab for the day. As the sun sets and visitors begin to leave, you join up with a group of Ocean Discovery staff and walk up the street to El Titanic, where you enjoy one-too-many fish tacos and recap another exciting day of science and discovery at the Living Lab.