2015 AweSTEM Back to School Fun

Caroline Pierce
September 23, 2015

One month ago, NESS held their first “AweSTEM Back to School” event for students in grades 2-6. NESS, a proud US Sailing REACH sub-hub, offered an afternoon of free programming for 44 students from Connecticut and Rhode Island.

The curriculum for the day included learning about the six different types of simple machines (pulley, lever, inclined plane, wedge, screw, wheel & axel) and how sailing and kayaking use simple machines to gain a mechanical advantage on the water. Students also carried out water quality comparisons between NESS’s aquariums and the harbor. Microscopes were used to get a closer look at plankton and the adult animals in the touch tanks. While kayaking, students tested the salinity and temperature of the harbor which they then compared to measurements they took of the aquariums in the lab.

Windy Key, a US Sailing training communications administrator, visited NESS for the day to see the kids in action. “NESS has done a sensational job of representing US Sailing as a REACH sub-hub. They establish the importance of STEM education in a fun and interactive way and are creating the next generation of environmental stewards,” said Windy.

AweSTEM proved to be a great way to introduce students to sailing, kayaking, and marine science for a day full of fun, hands-wet learning before they headed back to school!