Thank you to all of our students who helped us kick off summer with excitement, curiosity, and eagerness to learn in our outdoor classrooms. Our educators focused on a variety of topics and techniques throughout the week, while adjusting programs accordingly to the weather, from the sunny and calm days, to the windy and wavy days.
The marine science programs explored aspects of the earth and human effects on it. Our littlest campers, the Little Aquanauts, discovered how water shapes the features of the earth by engineering their own shape for maximum splash and paddle boarding to discover density and buoyancy. The Bay Bounders channeled their architecture skills by designing and building a sailing machine and ROV. Boat trips, boogie boarding, and snorkeling were all part of this challenge of course! Ocean Explorers focused on the effects of marine debris, starting the morning with a beach clean-up in a different location every day. The Ocean Explorers also snorkeled at the biodiversity of Sandy Point and took a kayak excursion in the Harbor. Marine Scientists evaluated the NESS Farm supported by aquaponics! Working in teams the scientists engineered a prototype aquaponics system and went out on the water themselves to catch as many species of fish as possible.
Students in adventure sports had no problem getting in the water this early in the season. Playing games like capture the flag and kayak soccer tested their strength and abilities in the Harbor. The surfing program traveled to Fishers Island and Napatree, successfully finding waves of a variety of sizes. Fishing caught flukes, porgies, and stripers every day by White Rock, outside of Napatree, and the Breakwall. They even made their own lures with knife handles and spoons!
Sailing Adventures sailed 4 different kinds of sailboats in Long Island Sound over the course of the week, including O’pen Bics, Sonars, Hartleys and Optis. Ranging from first-time sailors to sailors in race training, students learned how to rig a sailboat, tack, roll tack, and safely maneuver a capsized boat. 8 NESS/Wadawanuck Club teams raced in the 420 New England’s this past weekend out of the Wadawanuck Club, one team finishing in the top third out of 72 teams!
It was rewarding to witness students build trust in their peers, as well as trust in their own abilities this past week. We look forward to a summer filled with ocean adventure education! Check out our Week 1 Photos on Facebook!