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Topic: Evolution of Sailboats


Teacher Resources:

Printable PDF Version of this Lesson Plan

Downloadable PPT of Lesson (50.4mb)

Handout PDF - Evolution of Sailboats


image from lesson 2 Click here to launch PowerPoint for Lesson 2

Primary Goal : Students will learn how sailboat designs have evolved and improved over hundreds of years. We want students to understand why certain designs have succeeded and why others have failed.

Lesson Objectives :

  • Sailboats have a long history which provides important insights into why boats have evolved to what they are today
  • Students should understand the pros and cons to earlier sailboat designs
  • After this lesson, students should be able to reference ancient designs and effectively integrate them into their own design later in the course

Lesson Outline :

  1. Intro
    1. Without an engine or motor (way to convert a form of energy into mechanical energy) sailing vessels relied upon wind for propulsion
    2. Sailboats are classified by:
      1. The shape of their sails and how many sails they have
      2. The location and number of masts
  2. Early History
    1. Dhow – one of the earliest sailboat designs
      1. Two or more triangular sails called “lateens”
      2. Explain the significance of a dhow’s unweighted shallow keel
      3. Generally weighted down by cargo or rocks to maintain stability
      4. Marconi
  3. Age of Sail – 16 th -19 th century period where international trade and naval warfare were both dominated by sailing ships
    1. Square Rig – aerodynamically most efficient running rig
      1. Good for sailing downwind
      2. Introduce “Sail area” – Square-rigs had an extremely large sail area that allowed it to take advantage of even light winds
    2. Ketch/Yawl
    3. Cutter – traditionally a single-masted, fore-and-aft rig, with at least two headsails
      1. Fore-and-aft rig – sail configuration is set along the line of the keel rather than perpendicular
    4. Sloop – single-masted, fore-and-aft rig, with a single headsail
      1. Bermuda rig most common
      2. Allows optimal upwind sailing and downwind sailing
        1. Introduce spinnaker and compare to wing-on-wing
    5. Catboat
  4. Modern Designs
    1. Hydrofoil – sailboat with wing-like foils mounted under the hull
      1. As the boat speeds up, the hydrofoils lift the hull up and out of the water
      2. This decreases the amount of drag, and increases the boat speed
      3. Monohull vs. Multihull

Supplemental Resources :

Sailboat History Timeline: http://www.dawn.com/news/617729/sailboat-history-timeline

Chapman’s p. 30: Diagram

Exercises/Activities :

Put a series of sailboat photos on the board and have students identify each and describe some of the characteristics.

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NSHOF STEM Sailing™ logo

Topic: Introduction to Sailboats


Teacher Resources:

Printable PDF Version of this Lesson Plan

Downloadable PPT of Lesson (12.5MB PPTX)

Lesson 1 Handout - Sailboat Parts Identification Exercise (1MB PDF)


image from lesson 1 Click here to launch PowerPoint for Lesson 1

Primary Goal :

A basic introduction to the sailboat and the excitement of sailing and the science behind it. Students should be able to identify the parts of a sailboat and familiarize themselves with some of the terminology that will be used throughout the course.

Lesson Objectives :

  • Ability to identify fundamental parts of a sailboat

  • Introduction to boat terminology used throughout the course

  • Know that while sailboat designs differ greatly, most of the fundamentals are the same.

Lesson Outline :

  1. Let's Go Sailing!
    1. Here is a great 6-minute YouTube™ video compilation that should get students revved up:



  2. The Language of Sailing
    1. When looking at the many pictures of all the different types of sailboats, students may become overwhelmed
    2. It is important to emphasize that although boat designs may differ greatly, most of the fundamental elements are the same
    3. Show the slide with the 7 boats and ask the students to identify the similarities/differences
      1. Not only will this get the students engaged, but it will make them aware that they don’t know the boat terminology
    4. Learning boat terminology is like learning a new language à critical for communication

  3. Identify the Parts of a Sailboat
    1. Hull – the foundation of the boat that makes it a seagoing vessel
      1. Bow, Stern, Port, Starboard
      2. Fiberglass, wood, metal
    2. The Rig – the structures coming up from the hull that support the sails
      1. Mast, Boom, Forestay, Backstay, Shrouds
      2. Explain the importance of supporting the mast
    3. Running Rigging – all the gear and lines used to raise and trim the sails
      1. Halyards, Sheets
    4. Sails – how a boat generates speed
      1. Mainsail, Jib, Spinnaker
      2. Parts of the Sail: Luff, Leech, Foot
    5. Underwater Appendages
      1. Rudder, Keel

Supplemental Resources :

School of Sailing Glossary: http://www.schoolofsailing.net/terminology.html

US Sailing Video: Parts of a Boat : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vZ6O8lB0cII

Additional Sailing Videos

  1. “The Physics of Sailing” – KQED Quest (9:31 min) Uploaded on Oct 1, 2008 Northern California has a storied, 500-year history of sailing. But despite this rich heritage, scientists and boat designers continue to learn more each day about what makes a sail boat move. Contrary to what you might expect, the physics of sailing still present some mysteries to modern sailors.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yqwb4HIrORM

  2. “Beginners Guide to Sailing” – Yeadon Sailing Club (9:57 min) Published on Feb 19, 2014 This is a basic beginners guide to how boats sail, parts of a boat, points of sail and a triangular course. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b477nzyJum0

  3. “Trimming Your Sails – The Basics” – Mike Sans (Part 1) (8:06 min) Published on Jan 14, 2013
    From website: http://www.onthehelm.com An introduction into sail trimming. Part 1 gives the basics. Get some great tips, learn the theory and see the guys in action.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TttqFylquFs

  4. “Trimming Your Sails – The Genoa” – Mike Sans (Part 2) (8:01 min) Published on Jan 14, 2013
    From website: http://www.onthehelm.com This is the second lesson in sail trimming. This lesson covers how to get the best out of your genoa headsail.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QyOIeVl1meY

  5. 5. “Trimming Your Sails – The Mainsail” – Mike Sans (Part 3) (8:06 min) Published on Jan 15, 2013
    From website: http://www.onthehelm.com In part 3 of this series we learn how to trim the mainsail and keep in the groove. If you are interested in things nautical then why not visit our members website and join in the fun, we welcome people who have something to offer the great sport of sailing and boating. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L0IvU59u5Vg

  6. “Trimming Your Sails – The Spinnaker” – Mike Sans (Part 4) ( 7:17 min) Published on Jan 15, 2013
    From website http://www.onthehelm.com This is the final part in this four-part series of instructional videos on how to trim your sails and get the best from your yacht. If you are interested in things nautical then why not visit our members website and join in the fun, we need people who have something to offer the great sport of sailing and boating.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uBcq3PSKFRw

Exercises/Activities :

If you have access to boat models, bring them in and allow the students to take turns identifying the parts of the sailboat. It will be good to provide them with a list of all the items covered during the course.

Separate the students into groups and create a competition using both the sailboat part identification and definitions (Sailboat Jeopardy works well).

Next Lesson


NSHOF STEM Sailing™ logo

Learning Objectives - 5th Grade

Students will:

  • Become engaged in the science of sailing, specifically sail design and how a sail works to move a sailboat
  • Be introduced to essential background on the art and history of sailing, including terminology, so that they have a context from which to study the design and purpose of sails
  • Learn first-hand how sail design impacts sailboat performance

SuperSails-AACPS


Timing:
Each of these lessons are a 45-60 minute lesson plan, designed to be presented over six weeks (they do not have to be consecutive weeks).

Note: An on-water experience is strongly suggested, to give students an opportunity to see for themselves how sails actually work as an integral part of the sailboat. It is also strongly suggested that this experience does not take place prior to the PBL, but after completing either Lesson 4 or Lesson 7.

MOI = Method of Instruction (Research, Lecture, Workshop, etc.)


Lesson 1: Introduction to Sailboats

Introduction / Videos

Introduce students to the excitement of sailing and the science involved using one or more short videos available online.

MOI: YouTube videos.

The Language of Sailing

Students will learn about "boating language" — the unique terminology used to describe the parts of a sailboat and how they work to move a sailboat. They will also develop an understanding that while sailboat designs differ greatly, most of the fundamentals are the same.

MOI: Presentation requiring student interaction.

Parts of a Sailboat

Students will learn and be able to identify basic sailboat components, including the hull, standing rigging, running rigging, sails and underwater appendages (rudder and keel or centerboard/daggerboard).

MOI: Presentation requiring student interaction, video, Sailboat Parts ID Exercise .


Lesson 2: Evolution of Sailboats

Introduction

Students will learn how sailboats have relied upon the wind for propulsion.

MOI: Presentation.

Early History

The very beginning of how humans learned to harness the wind and put it to use for moving them through the water. Students will learn about dhows, lateen sails, the need for ballast, and the evoution of the Marconi rig and its importance.

MOI: Presentation .

Age of Sail

Discover the period during the 16th-19th centuries, when international trade and naval warfare were dominated by sailiing ships. Students will learn about various sail designs, including the square rig, ketches and yawls, cutters and sloops, and catboats. The introduction of the spinnaker will also be discussed.

MOI: Presentation .

Modern Designs

Students will learn about more recent and radically different developments in sailboat and sail design, including multihulls and hydrofoils, and the science behind why they make such a huge difference in speed.

MOI: Presentation requiring student interaction, videos .


Lesson 3: How a Sailboat Works

Introduction

After reviewing terminology and other concepts learned, student learn about how two different systems — aerodynamic and hydrodynamic — work together to make for a complex system that determines how the interaction of the wind, sails, hull, water, and keel all effect a boats propulsion

MOI: Presentation requiring student interaction, videos.

Sails

Discuss the difference between the "push" and "pull" modes of sailing, and how wind "bends" around sails as it goes by, creating pressure differences.

MOI: Presentation requiring student interaction, videos. Fan & Hand Exercise.

Keel

Discover the importance of the keel to a sailboat's performance, and learn the basic physics principles that lead to the keel's multiple roles in not only propelling the boat forward, but also in preventing a monohull sailboat from both going sideways and flipping over.

MOI: Presentation requiring student interaction .


Lesson 4: Hulls and Sails

Why a Sailboat's Hull is So Important

Students learn about how a hull affects vessel stability, speed and passenger comfort, and the tradeoffs that are made between these ideals when selecting different hull types and designing hull shapes.

MOI: Presentation requiring student interaction

Hull Types

The different hull types (monohull, catamaran and trimaran) are introduced and their features compared.

MOI: Presentation requiring student interaction .

Keel Types

Along with hull type, the type and size of a sailboat's keel has a tremendous impact in how the sailboat will perform. The pros and cons of full keel, fin keel, bulb keel and winged keel designs are discussed.

MOI: Presentation requiring student interaction .

Hull Displacement

Students are introduced to the concept of hull displacement (the amount of water that is "shoved" aside by the weight of the sailboat and replaced with the inner volume of the boat). How water salinity affects hull displacement is discussed.

MOI: Presentation requiring student interaction, worksheets.

Displacement / Length Ratio (D/L)

An introduction to the mathematical calculation that is so important in determining a sailboat design's purpose and performance. Students will learn what constitutes a heavy displacement versus a light displacement hull, and why an ideal D/L ratio is based on how the boat is to be used, so there is no "best" number.

MOI: Presentation requiring student interaction, worksheets.

Ballast / Displacement Ratio (B/D)

In addition to D/L, the amount of weight, or ballast, that a sailboat carries in it's hull or on its keel will work to counter the "heel" (leaning over) that is created by the wind on the sails. Students will learn that the right B/D ratio will enable a sailboat to go faster without becoming unstable, while a heavy B/D slows a boat down, and a light B/D creates instability that can be dangerous, depending on the boat's intended use and where it will be sailed.

MOI: Presentation requiring student interaction, worksheets.

Sail Lift and Sail Area (SA)

Students will review how sails are used to generate lift, and thus speed. They will also learn how to measure and calculate Sail Area (SA) in order to determine a sail's potential for generating speed.

MOI: Presentation requiring student interaction.


Calculating SA

When an object is in the way students will need to learn to head off to keep a proper course. If they don't head off they will add error to their courses.

MOI: Student measurement exercise, v ideos.


Lesson 5a: Hull Speed and Buoyancy - Part 1

Speed

After reviewing previous lessons, students are introduced to how all of the concepts they have learned are used together to determine a boat's potential to go fast.

MOI: Presentation, Student Analysis.

Modes of Sailing

The different modes of sailing — displacement, planing and forced — are introduced.

MOI: Presentation requiring student interaction .

Hull Speed

As a displacement sailboat hull pushes through the water, it is constantly displacing a new patch of water, creating waves at the bow and stern of the boat, which work to "trap" the hull and prevent it from going any faster. The concept of theoretical hull speed is discussed and the calculations used to determine hull speed are introduced. Also, students will explore why length is important to speed for displacement sailboats but not for planing sailboats.

MOI: Presentation requiring student interaction, worksheets.

Buoyancy

A boat floats so long as its total volume weighs less than the density of the water it is displacing. Students are introduced to the Archimedes Principle and the concepts of gravitational weight and upward buoyancy force, as a trigger to a discussion of density .

MOI: Presentation requiring student interaction, videos. Optional classroom buoyancy demonstration.


Lesson 5b: Hull Speed and Buoyancy - Part 2

Speed

After reviewing previous lessons, students are introduced to how all of the concepts they have learned are used together to determine a boat's potential to go fast.

MOI: Presentation, Student Analysis.

Modes of Sailing

The different modes of sailing — displacement, planing and forced — are introduced.

MOI: Presentation requiring student interaction .

Hull Speed

As a displacement sailboat hull pushes through the water, it is constantly displacing a new patch of water, creating waves at the bow and stern of the boat, which work to "trap" the hull and prevent it from going any faster. The concept of theoretical hull speed is discussed and the calculations used to determine hull speed are introduced. Also, students will explore why length is important to speed for displacement sailboats but not for planing sailboats.

MOI: Presentation requiring student interaction, worksheets.

Buoyancy

A boat floats so long as its total volume weighs less than the density of the water it is displacing. Students are introduced to the Archimedes Principle and the concepts of gravitational weight and upward buoyancy force, as a trigger to a discussion of density .

MOI: Presentation requiring student interaction, videos. Optional classroom buoyancy demonstration.


Lesson 6: Sailboat Workshop

The Engineering Design Process

Students are introduced to the process used by naval architects and marine engineers to imagine, develop, test and improve sailboat hull and sail designs.

MOI: Presentation requiring student interaction .

Introduction to the Sail Car Kit

Having learned the basic principles of sailboat and sail design, students are now teamed together to design and build their own model sailboat on wheels.

MOI: Presentation and demonstration. Sail Car Kit .


Lesson 7: Activity — Sailboat Design Project

Sail Loft Work Exercise

Students work to design and construct the sails for their Sail Cars.

MOI: Student activity with supervision and assistance, Google Sketch.

Race Day Testing

Using a fan for wind, students conduct timed races of their sail designs using their finished Sail Cars to see how their designs fare against each other. Design teams present their completed reports and discuss their designs and changes they would make after reviewing their test results.

MOI: Student activity with supervision and assistance, student group report presentation and classroom discussion .

Optional Lesson: KidWind Project (Wind Turbines)

Wind Turbines are Sails

Using the same concepts and design process learned earlier, students learn that wind turbines used to generate electricity utilitze the same physics and design principles used to design and build sails. They then engage in an activity to design the perfect wind turbine, using an online video that explains the concepts of wind turbines.

KidWind Project (www.KidWind.org) – “Wind 101 Presentation” – concept, design, and use of wind turbines (49 min) https://vimeo.com/51537100

MOI: Video, student activity with supervision and assistance.

KidWind Turbine Construction

Students build their KidWind turbines and test performance. Optional enrollment in the RechargeLabs KidWind competition.

Building the Perfect PVC Wind Turbine by KidWind.org http://www.instructables.com/id/Model-Wind-Turbine-KidWind-Project/

MOI: Student activity with supervision and assistance, student group report presentation and classroom discussion.

Topic: Navigation Plotting Worksheets


This lesson is a student work session that allows students to apply all the skills they have developed from the previous lessons.

US Navy using navigation skills Working in groups around a chart, they will solve a series of problems.  For the example provided, we use the 12283 Annapolis Harbor Chart, but you can use any local navigation chart to allow the students to learn and experience the waters in your local area."

Teacher Resources:

Nav Plotting Worksheet - Questions (PDF)

Nav Plotting Worksheet - Answers (PDF)

Link to Online zoomable NOAA Chart 12283 - Annapolis Harbor

Downloadable link to NOAA Chart 12283 - Annapolis Harbor (PDF)

Note: Since this is a student workgroup session, there is no formal lesson plan or Powerpoint for Lesson 7.

Next Lesson


NSHOF STEM Sailing™ logo

STEM Sailing™ - Navigation

The National Sailing Hall of Fame STEM Sailing Navigation on Land and at Sea Course is designed for 10th Grade high school students.

Each lesson includes a PowerPoint presentation and lesson plan. There are also handouts you can download and print for your students, including worksheets and exams.


Lesson 1 - History of Charts & Maps

Image from Lesson 1 An introduction to charts and maps, whey they exist and their importance in our history and current life.

Lesson 2 - Deciphering Charts & Maps

Image from lesson 2 Introduces students to learning how to read, decode, and decipher a nautical chart and topographic map.

Lesson 3 - Three Norths & Variation

lesson3 Explains to students the differences in the three different ways to determine north. From this, they will be able to understand the concept and importance of magnetic declination or variation.

Lesson 4 - Magnetic Compass

lesson4 Explains the science behind how a magnetic compass works and gives them the opportunity to practice taking bearings using a hand-bearing magnetic compass.

Lesson 5 - Bearing Triangulation

image from lesson 5 Students will learn how to determine their location by triangulation. They will accomplish this by taking bearings of surrounding objects. This lesson will build on their work with the hand-bearing compass and demonstrate one of the primary uses of a compass.

Lesson 6 - Dead Reckoning

image from lesson 6 Students will learn how to navigate by determining their expected future position based on current course and speed. After learning how to properly take a fix using both GPS and visual bearings, this introduces the concept of time, speed, distance, and direction.

Lesson 7 - Navigation Plotting

US Navy using navigation skills This lesson is a student work session that allows students to apply all the skills they have developed from the previous lessons.

Lesson 8 - GPS (with Exam Review)

image from lesson 8 Students know how to use GPS, but will now learn how GPS actually works. Understanding the history and development of GPS is critical to allowing the students to look at the concept as an innovator or entrepreneur. Every day people are discovering ways to make our lives easier through GPS and this lesson aims to provide the students with a foundation behind the science.

EXAMS

Navigation Pre-Test (PDF)

Navigation Quiz (PDF)

Navigation Final Test (PDF)

TEACHERS: For Answer Keys to these tests, please send an email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .


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