Sailors for the Sea Publishes Rainy Day Kits for Environmental Education

First-ever lesson plans for incorporation into Youth Sailing Programs. Understanding the marine ecosystem that thrives beneath their boats encourages young sailors to develop a strong passion for protecting and preserving their oceans and local waters

 

Newport, Rhode Island - January 31, 2011 - Sailors for the Sea, the only ocean conservation nonprofit focused on the sailing and boating community, today announced Sailors for the Sea Rainy Day Kits for Environmental Education, the first-of-its-kind marine science based lesson plans developed for junior sailors.

These free environmental lesson plans, available online, were created in partnership with leading marine biology and science institutions to provide practical educational tools for teaching the principles of environmental sustainability to young sailors. Sailing instructors who may not be formally trained educators in ecology or biology can easily incorporate the flexible lesson plans into their sailing instructions.

"Thanks to the tremendous support from our science and education partners, Sailors for the Sea is proud to offer free, informal environmental education lesson plans for community sailing centers, yacht clubs and waterfront facilities. These 30-45 minute modules are science based and designed for junior sailors and children around the country," said Dan Pingaro, CEO, Sailors for the Sea. The plans give youth sailing instructors relevant content about marine ecology and the practical tools needed to make a positive impact to natural resource depletion and habitat degradation.

The benefit of the Rainy Day Kits program is the substantial dimension it adds to youth sailing programs by integrating serious environmental education into the traditional sailing instruction. The program's success will be measured in the creation of a new generation of ocean stewards.

According to Chris Mancini, program director, Sailors for the Sea, "As the newest addition to the Sailors for the Sea program offerings, the Rainy Day Kits create an interactive educational experience that connects junior sailors to the marine environment beneath their hulls. The expectation is that with this connection and understanding, students will develop a greater passion for protecting the marine ecosystem."

Sailors for the Sea, along with leaders in the fields of marine and environmental science and education, created and contributed the lessons and labs making up the Rainy Day Kits program. The first six Rainy Day Kits lesson plans are available now and include:

  • Bio-Magnification Game, contributed by the Rozalia Project for a Clean Ocean - tag-inspired game that demonstrates the concept of bio-magnification as it relates to plastics and how chemicals and plastics can make it onto our dinner plates.
  • Clam Jigsaw, contributed by Harte Research Institute for Gulf of Mexico Studies - students create a cutout model of a clam to investigate the anatomy and physiology of these animals.
  • Density Currents, contributed by the Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science - demonstrates the Thermohaline Circulation throughout the world's oceans and the relative density between cold and warm ocean water.
  • Dirty Water Challenge, contributed by the New England Aquarium - teaches students about their environment in an engaging and practical way. Inquiry and discussion is embedded within the practical-students have to design, plan and then build their own design of water filter. Students are exposed to important concepts from a variety of scientific disciplines, including how the water cycle works, and the principles behind water filtering.
  • Oyster Tag, contributed by Sailors for the Sea - tag-inspired game that demonstrates the effects of pollution on oyster reefs, as well as the effect of oyster reefs on pollution.
  • Who Dirtied the Water?, contributed by the New England Aquarium - interactive story asks students to take on the roles of different historical and modern characters who have had a role in the pollution of a body of water. As the story is read, each character in turn adds a film container full of pollutants to a jar of clean water representing the body of water.

The Sailors for the Sea Rainy Day Kits for Environmental Education are still in development. By summer 2011, this online resource will grow to at least 24 lessons as new plans are added monthly. The first six lesson plans available now by download.

About Sailors for the Sea 
Founded in 2004, Sailors for the Sea is a nonprofit organization that educates and empowers the boating community to protect and restore our oceans and coastal waters. For more information on or to participate in any of the Sailors for the Sea programs, or to become a member and support the organization, visit www.sailorsforthesea.org.