Earth Zone is a collection of exemplary programs in the area of science. Earth Zone is comprised of a marine biology center, herpetology center and physical science center. The vision for the development of these centers came from the dedicated volunteer work of two former Dunbar teachers. The goals are:
- to expose students to science in hands-on experiential applications,
- to develop in our students a love for science and for learning
- to to give our students enriched learning opportunities
- to give our students opportunities to interact with living organisms and learn responsible care of these animals and the environment around them
- to motivate some of our students to explore future studies and careers in the field of science.
Earth Zone is not an SOL based program, but in some cases is also used to enhance SOL instruction.
The Marine Center is comprised of three salt water tanks: a 350-400 gallon open top tank housing many touchable organisms; a 90 gallon Caribbean themed tank, and a 180 gallon predator tank. Additionally we have a 75 gallon freshwater tank housing a freshwater stingray, and a 50 gallon freshwater stream tank.
The Herpetology Center has over 35 species of reptiles and amphibians from every part of the world and from every climate. This includes snakes, lizards, skinks, turtles, tortoises and and frogs. Almost all of our animals are captive raised, which is one of the foundational concepts we teach through conservation.
The Physical Science center and Laserium uses hands on media to teach physical science concepts. We have such equipment as high powered lasers, a Ruben's tube which illustrates sound waves through flames, a vacuum chamber and a plasma ball.