Tours and Speakers

Outreach Programs of the Byrd Polar and Climate Research Center are supported by the following: National Science Foundation, National Aeronautics and Space Administration, National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration, The Ohio State University, and Byrd Polar and Climate Research Center Education & Outreach Fund (OSU Fund 312018).

Group Tours of the Center

We regularly arrange tours of the Center, whether it is for intense scientific inquiry or simply to get a sense of the research performed by our groups. Our outreach team works to arrange a tour that highlights topics of interest to the audience, this can be portions of the curriculum students are studying or information that fulfillls a merit badge requirement. A visit that is more scientific in nature is more likely to get the opportunity to hear from researchers themselves; however, this is not always possible. Tours for up to 60 people can be arranged. Group Tours are not arranged for youth younger than 4th grade, but we can arrange a visit to your school. We recommend contacting us well in advance of your desired tour date as we have scheduling limitations and a large demand for tours. Request a Group Tour.

Public Tours of the Center

If you or your family would like to tour the center, we offer public tours most months. Find additional information on Public Tours and register to attend.

Tour group at the Byrd Polar Research Center Instructor talking to students during a Byrd Polar Research Center tour

Visits by Center Researchers and Students

If you have a group of younger students or cannot arrange for a visit to our facility, we can try to bring a speaker to you to discuss a topic related to your curriculum or organization's interests. We cannot guarantee a speaker but will do our best to accommodate you. Request a Visit by Center Researchers and Students.

Activities at a school visit from the Byrd Polar Research Center Children at a school visit by the Byrd Polar Research Center

Rock Boxes for Education

Rock Boxes contain samples (rocks, fossils, minerals), teacher materials (links provided below), and tools to examine the samples. Boxes sent to younger audiences also include books appropriate for various ages through 4th grade. Rock Boxes are freely provided to educators as an outreach service of the Polar Rock Repository and Byrd Polar and Climate Research Center. With few exceptions, all of the samples in the boxes are brought to you from Antarctica! Request a Rock Box for Education.

BPCRC, in partnership with teachers and visiting school groups, has put together a unit on rocks and the rock cycle [pdf]. The overall unit is provided here with one additional handout [pdf] that accompanies Investigation 2. This unit is designed to be inquiry-based and utilize materials available in our Rock Boxes.

The Polar Rock Repository is a library of samples collected by U.S. expeditions to Antarctica over the past century; the only difference is that we have rocks on our shelves rather than books. Rock Boxes are our way of sharing our vast collection of samples with you.


Not seeing what you are looking for? Contact the Byrd Center's Education & Outreach Group.