Sixth Graders Set Sail to Get an Introduction to the Life of Phoenician Mariners

Sailing2 Sixth grade Teacher Deborah Minutello-Bartlett’s students are looking forward to learning about Phoenician mariners in their next unit of study in Cultural History. To get a firsthand perspective, they took to the seas on October 14 aboard sailboats from Sag Harbor Sailing and under the guidance of grade 8 Teacher Mark Tompkins.


The students will be researching the sea routes, culture, and shipbuilding expertise of the Phoenicians. The time period sparked a new trading culture that spread across the Mediterranean Sea and has had a profound impact on modern methods of oceanic transportation and communication.

Sailing on Noyac Bay was not only about history, however. It was also a team-building experience for the students. They were quick to learn how the sails operated and how the Phoenicians employed cartography skills to map the land. The teachers on board observed the selfless efforts put in by the sailors as they tacked, skippered, and raised the sails.

“‘Best school day ever’ was mentioned numerous times, especially as we keeled over and the students got soaked in the ‘splash zone,’” said John Germano, Wellness teacher at Ross.

“At Ross, we strive to show the students how history maps to their current life. It was an excellent experience. Our conversations in the classroom about this pivotal point in our cultural history will now include laughter and great memories,” Deborah said.