Bay Exploration2017-09-18T20:56:01+00:00

Our educational programs aim to provide youth of all backgrounds with a firsthand experience of the unique ecology, rich history, and beauty of San Francisco Bay and the California coast.

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While onboard Seaward, students gain a hands-on understanding of marine science topics, build self-confidence, and develop teamwork skills through collectively sailing the boat in a dynamic environment.

Bay Explorations

Who: Up to 40 participants; 4th and 5th grade students, adaptable for 3rd-12th grades
What: Three-hour field trip-style educational sails on schooner Seaward; three different programs to choose from
Where: Board and disembark at the Bay Model Pier, Sausalito, CA; sail the San Francisco Bay!
When: April-November; sails are 9:00-12:00pm or 1:00-4:00pm
Why: All students should engage with their local waters; get out of the classroom, set sail, and expand their horizons!
How: Book now! Scholarships may be available
Price: $1,350 for up to 30 participants or $1,550 for up to 40 participants
Docking Fee: For educational sails that require a different pickup/dropoff other than our Sausalito dock, there is a $300 fee, plus the docking charges
Other: Need something a little different to accommodate your group? Let us know, and we’ll try to work with you to meet your needs

Teachers can choose between our three Bay Exploration programs


  • Navigation
  • Plankton
  • Seamanship


  • Sampling Olympics (Benthic Grab, Secchi Disc, Van Dorn Bottle)
  • Seamanship
  • Plankton


  • Navigation
  • Seamanship
  • Maritime History

*Teachers can request different combinations of lessons

All three programs combine a structured curriculum of rotating learning stations with the active and cooperative experience of getting the vessel underway, raising the sails, setting the course, and steering the ship. The curriculum aligns with 4th and 5th grade California State Education Standards in social studies and science. Our programs are best suited for 4th and 5th grade, but are readily adaptable for middle and high school classrooms. Many of our lesson modules align with California’s newly implemented Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) and incorporates STEM education. Programs include lessons in:

  • Seamanship
  • Navigation
  • Life of a Sailor
  • Maritime History of San Francisco Bay
  • Oceanography (Marine Sampling Techniques)
  • Plankton (Marine Ecology)
  • Analyzing the Environment (Watershed Science, Marine Ecology, Water Chemistry)
  • Moving the Ship (Simple Machines)
  • Microplastics (Marine Pollution, Marine Ecology)
0845 – 0900 – Head Educator meets students, gives program intro
0900 – 0910 – Students board, Captain gives welcome & safety talk
0910 – 0920 – Get off the dock – Motor out activity
0920 – 0940 – All-Hands Activity: “Oceanographer for a Day”
0940 – 0955 – Set Sails
0955 – 1025 – Station 1
1027 – 1057 – Station 2
1057 – 1102 – Silent Sail
1105 – 1135 – Station 3
1135 – 1150 – Strike Sails, debrief
1150 – 1155 – Dock
1155 – 1200 – Captain’s closing; Disembark

Our partner and neighbor, the Bay Model, is a hydraulic scale model of San Francisco Bay, now used as an educational display for the public. This invaluable teaching tool accompanies Call of the Sea’s educational program. We encourage schools, families and visiting sailors to take a stroll through their informative exhibits and visitor center. Located immediately adjacent to our sailing vessels, it’s easy to stop by for a tour before or after your sail to enhance your field trip excursion.

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