Education Under Sail



Under Sail


Community Ed
& Workshops


BaySail uses an inquiry-based approach to Environmental, Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (e-STEM) Education.

Students use real-world, problem-based learning with scientific observations & measurements to understand the world around them.

Launched in 2016, this hands-on program lets high school students sail the ocean, learning the ropes of traditional tall ship sailing.

The heart of our program is building connections to the Great Lakes through hands-on activities and workshops.

Education Under Sail Overview

Environmental education is at the core of everything we do. Our hands-on experiences engage elementary through high school students, undergraduates, teachers, adults, and other organizations.

BaySail utilizes an inquiry-based approach to Environmental-STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) Education. Our e-STEM programs offer the unique opportunity for participants to take part in real-world physical, life, and Earth sciences.

From our award-winning Science Under Sail program to customized programs for educators, community leaders, and the agricultural community, BaySail’s educational programs enlighten participants throughout the Great Lakes Bay Region and beyond.

Explore all of our STEM education programs below including shipboard or dockside Science Under Sail, History Under Sail, or classroom and land-based opportunities.


BaySail’s flagship e-STEM program, Science Under Sail, launched in 1998 with the founding of the organization and the acquisition of the schooner Appledore IV. (E-STEM educational programs focus on Environmental, Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics.)

Since 1998, over 44,000 students have participated in a Science Under Sail program aboard the Appledore tall ships. Science Under Sail engages students in real-world, problem-based learning, through scientific observations and measurements of weather, water quality, aquatic life, and human impact on the environment.

Customizable shipboard lessons encourage higher-order thinking through collaboration with peers and experts. Each Science Under Sail program uses grade-level appropriate content and materials aligned with the Next Generation Science Standards.

Science Under Sail K-12



Setting up the program to use with my students, going through it with them, and finally culminating our study with the cruise on the Appledore IV has been one of the most enjoyed and significant science expeditions I’ve ever taken with a group of students. Thank you is not enough for making this possible for us.

Patti Marks


This is one of the best opportunities available for getting every student involved and excited about the health and protection of the Great Lakes.

2013 Guest

Sea Scholars

Launched in 2016, the inaugural Sea Scholars voyage saw four high school students sail Appledore V from Key West, Florida to Bay City, Michigan over a 5-week period. During the voyage, students completed classroom assignments while learning the ropes of traditional tall ship sailing in the Atlantic Ocean. A shipboard educator and fellow crew members assisted students with additional environmental learning activities throughout the voyage.

Highlights of the 2016 Sea Scholars voyage included:

  • Visiting the Dolphin Research Center on Grassy Key
  • Stopping at the University of North Carolina Marine Research Facility
  • Staying overnight in Atlantic City, New Jersey
  • Touring the Big Apple
  • A behind-the-scenes tour of Niagara Falls
  • Welcome Home Party with family and friends

Let us know if you are interested in a future Sea Scholars voyage.

Community Education & Workshops

BaySail believes in creating connections to the Great Lakes through shipboard and land-based educational opportunities. Learners of all ages and backgrounds have established their connection by participating in one of the many Community Education programs and Workshops offered by BaySail aboard the Appledore tall ships.

Michigan Agriculture Environmental Assurance Program (MAEAP)

In 2014, BaySail began a lasting partnership with the Michigan Agriculture Environmental Assurance Program (MAEAP) through the Lenawee Conservation District. MAEAP is an innovative, proactive program that helps farms of all sizes and all commodities voluntarily prevent or minimize agricultural pollution risks.

MAEAP’s mission is to develop and implement a proactive environmental assurance program ensuring that Michigan farmers engage in cost-effective pollution prevention practices and work to comply with state and federal environmental regulations.

From the decks of the Appledore tall ships, members of the agricultural communities in the Saginaw Bay Watershed of Michigan and the Western Lake Erie Basin of Michigan & Ohio have participated in MAEAP programming aimed at minimizing agricultural pollution risks.

Each year, BaySail adds new partnerships with conservation districts across the region looking to expand MAEAP program offerings.