Between you and me, Week 3 at NESS was pure glee! Students dove into all types of ecosystems, waves, and winds, where they examined discoveries and strengthened their skills. Sunny skies all week long allowed students to fully immerse themselves in the refreshing Long Island Sound.
The littlest students, the Little Aquanauts, explored the various habitats and critters along the coastline, then designed, created, and cared for marine and terrestrial habitats themselves! Inspired by Stonington’s ship designer and discoverer of the Antarctic Peninsula, “Captain Nat,” the Bay Bounders, examined how Stonington Harbor has changed physically and socially over the past 200 years with kayaking and boat trips! This included snorkeling coral reefs and analyzing local country fish. Using technology, engineering, art, and math, the Ocean Explorers generated ideas and plans to solve local marine issues then testing their prototypes. In the afternoon, Ocean Explorers focused on the health of the local watersheds by building experimental models, testing the water quality, and inventing new ways of keeping our local waterways clean. Our oldest students, Marine Biologists, created and built a SeaPerch ROV by putting together motors and blades, waterproofing electronics, testing ROV shape and buoyancy. The Marine Biologists then tested its performance in the ocean through a series of fun and challenging scenarios.
Fishing students tested out a variety of fishing styles in saltwater with different target species, including flat fishing and sight fishing. Students in Mixed Sports used charts, compasses, navigation and GPS to learn about different types of caches, and finally placing an official NESS puzzle geocache! Other students learned to harness the natural force of the ocean and wind to fly across the harbor on a windsurf board! Engaging the core, mind, and body, students were able to get fit, focused, and balanced on the water while exploring Long Island Sound.
Whether new to sailing or getting ready for their next big race, sailing students improved their skills on the water in their classes throughout the week, including water safety, boat handling, keelboat proficiency, navigation around Stonington Harbor and Fishers Island Sound, and trapeze and spinnaker usage. As a result, students developed confidence solo sailing and communication skills partner sailing!
Don’t worry, registration might be closed for Week 4, but there’s still more! Check out which program best fits you for the upcoming weeks!