After spending the past two and a half months at sea, Morristown Beard School’s 6th Grade sailboat, Crimson Current, has been recovered in a cave off the rocky shores of Barry’s Cove in County Cork, Ireland. The boat was picked up on July 5 by Katie McCarthy and her family, who plan to take it to Barryroe National School, where the middle school students there can connect with the MBS students in the fall.
This is the 10th year in a row that Morristown Beard School 6th graders have launched a 5-foot, unmanned sailboat as part of the "Educational Passages" program. This year's boat — Crimson Current — was launched in the North Atlantic from Independent Horizon, a container ship bound for the United States from Europe.
Crimson Current is equipped with a GPS that transmits to a satellite, so MBS students have been able to track its journey on the web. In its hull, students placed a variety of items including a baseball, an Abraham Lincoln coffee mug, essays about life in New Jersey, an MBS cap, a USA jersey, and issues of Crimson magazine. “We had a great time opening your boat,” said Katie McCarthy. “You made our day!”
The first MBS boat — Crimson Tide – was launched in 2012 and was recovered by a fisherman in Guernsey, an island in the English Channel off the coast of Normandy. It was later re-launched and washed ashore in France. Other MBS boats, Crimson Cruiser and Crimson Wave, have traveled to Florida and the Orkney Islands in Northern Scotland.
MBS Middle School teacher Lisa Swanson says the project is exciting because it can also provide a backdrop to teach everything from physics to world languages. A significant aspect of the project hinges on the hope that students can connect with their peers across the globe when the boat reaches a foreign shore. When Crimson Tide was retrieved off the coast of Guernsey, for example, it set up exciting new learning opportunities as MBS students connected with students there via Skype.
Now that Crimson Current has been recovered in Ireland, the MBS Middle Schoolers will be anxious to connect with local school children there to learn more about the country and daily way of life.
Stay tuned for more updates!