After a fantastic outing sailing on Clipper Cove with an enthusiastic group of 4th graders from Lakeshore Elementary, TISC celebrates passing the 12,000 smiles mark for our Set Sail Learn program! Students from across San Francisco have experienced sailing on San Francisco Bay and connected their on the water adventure to a unique and engaging STEM-based lesson in our learning center.
Clipper Cove and Bay Bridge frame Lakeshore Alternative Elementary School 4th Graders Celebrating 12,131 SSL Students since 2013.
Since Set Sail Learn’s inception in 2013, the program has served students from 70 schools encompassing every SFUSD district. Teachers select from three distinct curriculums emphasizing either the power of the wind, maritime history, or ecology of the bay. Every curriculum promotes inquiry based learning where students design, build, predict, test, and iterate as a team. The topics covered are rooted in STEM and vary from California’s unique geography to buoyancy and probability.
SSL is an immersive program provided at no charge to SFUSD schools, Each class is provided transportation to and from TISC, sailing on Clipper Cove and instructor-lead curriculum designed to meet 4th grade California core standards. Upon arrival the class is split with one half sailing and the other half in our classroom. After lunch they split.
Classes are led by by our trained instructors, and include guided discussions, team activities and hands-on project time. Below are a few photos taken from typical classes starting with experiments to determine buoyancy.
SFUSD student confirming that heavier-than-water objects are NOT buoyant.
Designing, building and racing land yachts are one of the favorite hands-on activities.
SFUSD Students setting up the “land yacht” they built during a Set Sail Learn lesson at Treasure Island Sailing Center.
And they are OFF ! SFUSD 4th grade students used life savers, tape, glue and paper to build this land yacht. Will these kids be building boats, cars or airplanes using carbon fiber technologies and beyond inspired by this Set Sail Learn class at Treasure Island Sailing Center?.
The classroom portion includes both team based projects and guided discussion where students get a chance to lead the class and pose questions to the group..
While half the students are learning, problem solving, running experiments and team building, the other half are on Clipper Cove learning about the wind, watching it make the boats move, and connecting with Mother Nature around and under them.
And while TISC instructors use best efforts to make time in our learning center fun, sailing on Clipper Cove is hard to beat. A majority of SSL students have never been on the water, some are nervous, very few have ever sailed and ALL return to the dock with huge smiles on their faces.
Doesn’t take much imagination to see the magic effect the waters of Clipper Cove have on 4th grade elementary students..It would be nearly impossible to tell the difference from “I touched the water” photos of
John Yehall Chin students hands in the water from our first SSL blog post in 2013 (JYC Kids’ Crabby Day at TISC),
- St. Francis Sailing Foundation grant celebration on Clipper Cove in 2017 (St. Francis Sailing Foundation Grant Launches Set Sail Learn), and
- our most recent Spring 2023 graduates.
“I touched the water”.
Such a simple yet high impact statement from a San Francisco 4th grader. “I touched the water”.
How fortunate we are to have been able to touch 12,131 SFUSD fourth graders since 2013. We look forward to welcoming our Spring 2023 4th grade students.
Regards from On the Cove, and best wishes for the Holidays, Dave G
In the Wake:
Testimonials for TISC’s SSL program from teachers have been glowing:
“My students reflected how they felt more connected to their science learning. Also, they loved first experiencing sailing and understanding better the strength of wind power.”
Reactions from fourth graders have been off-the-chart positive, with one single, simple act resonating with all. Jayden said it best:
“It was amazing. It was the best field trip because I got to put my hand in the water and my sleeve got wet.”
His feelings carried through many of the thank you cards we received.