1st Voyage

The Dream Sailor is from Sullivan’s Island Elementary in Charleston, South Carolina. It was named to honor the mission of The Dreamboats, a rowing adventure as part of the Talisker Whiskey Atlantic Challenge to which one of the parents is embarking on.

As the students were preparing their new boat, another miniboat named SPECIAL (pictured to the right) happened to land nearby on September 11 and was brought to their school to learn about the project and meet students from Donald McKay School in Boston, Massachusetts. They opened the hatch on October 26.


  • October 26, 2022 - First meeting!

    Update from the Media Team Log Book: Wednesday, October 26th

    Today, we met each other for the first time as a crew! Our crew consists of 12 fourth grade students and one fifth grade student, who serves as our captain.

    Our Miniboat Lead Teacher is Mrs. Ferguson, and our Coastal Science Teachers, Mrs. Skinner, Mrs. Gillespie, and Mrs. Smith, help out as well. We also have a community member and parent, Mike Firestone, who will come to all of our sessions. He is the Construction Supervisor at Mount Pleasant Waterworks, so he a) knows a lot about building and b) cares about the health of our ocean and water systems. Besides meeting the crew, we also learned all about the Educational Passages program. In addition, we learned about a cool connection to a parent at our school, Ben Towill. He will be rowing across the Atlantic Ocean to raise money for Green Heart (a gardening program our school participates in) and Foundation 2041. We were so inspired by his mission that we decided to name our boat in honor of his project. His boat is called The Dreamboats, so we decided to name ours Dream Sailor

    We also got to do something extra special today. In August, another school’s boat landed near our school on Bulls Island. The boat, called Special, was created by the students at Donald McKay Elementary School. We got to open the hold to see what items they placed in it for us to find. We learned all about the USS Constitution, saw a neat coin from the USS Constitution, viewed a map of Boston in 1769, read their crew sheets, and looked at their ID badge lanyards. Their crew spoke four different languages: Portuguese, Arabic, Spanish, and English. That is amazing! We will seal their hold back up and launch it with our boat….wonder where they will go?

  • October 28, 2022 - Miniboat progress

    Update from the Media Team Log Book: Friday, October 28th

    Today, we learned the various parts of our miniboat and their purpose. We had to ballast the keel today, completing parts 1 and 2. We mixed resin, sand, and hardener together. Then, we poured the mixture into our keel. We did this twice, with varying amounts of resin and hardener in each batch. We then poured it into the keel. We will let it dry for several days. In addition, we took crew pictures and worked on our crew sheets to place in our cargo hold. 

  • Miniboat Logbook 11/2-11/18, 2022

    Update from the Media Team Log Book: Wednesday, November 2nd

    Today, we split our 12 member crew into smaller teams to focus on several different tasks. Everyone got to choose a team that was of interest to them: 1) Media/Tech, 2) Keel/Hull, and 3) Sail/Deck. The Keel/Hull team finished ballasting the keel (parts 3 and 4). Part 3 included a mixture of resin, hardener, and sand. Part 4 was just resin. They placed it in the correct position to dry until our next meeting. The Sail/Deck team created designs for the front and back of the sail. Our Miniboat Lead Teacher, Mrs. Ferguson, will scan these into a Google Slides presentation. At the next meeting, the Sail/Deck team will present the individual designs and our crew will vote on the winning design. Our Media/Tech team worked on writing logbook entries, developing ideas for our Morning News Show, and exploring our sensor package. 

    Update November 9th

    Today, we began our session with a review of possible sail designs. After reviewing what we liked as a whole crew, we voted on the design we liked the best and tweaked it a little to reflect our whole group. The Sail/Deck team then began to work on a mock life size design of the SAIL for final approval. The Keel/Hull team was busy attaching the keel to the hull, which was no easy task! Lots of sanding occurred to get it to fit just right. Our Media/Tech team was busy learning all about our sensor package, molex connectors, wires, and terminals. We were so excited when we connected parts to our solar panel and saw a blinking light, which meant we connected it correctly. High fives were passed all around! We came back together to establish goals for our next meeting. 

    Update November 17th

    Today was a very busy day for our whole crew! The Sail/Deck team finalized their rough draft of the sail. They were excited to have found a way to include The Green Heart Project and the Dreamboat logo (our inspiration) into the design. The Media/Tech team connected the red, white, and black wires on the temperature sensors to the 3-wire connectors. They then connected the air temperature sensor and water temperature sensor to the correct sockets on the main board. We contacted Educational Passages to activate our system so we could test and see if data transmission was successful. The Media/Tech team also worked on writing a launch letter and creating presentations to share with our school and Donald McKay Elementary. The Keel/Hull team checked to make sure the keel was attached properly to the hull. Then, they proceeded to sand down the shiny, white gel goat on the hull to a dull finish. They also sanded the joint area from the keel installation until it was smooth. They are ready to apply the antifouling bottom paint!

    Update November 18th

    Today was an exciting time as it all seemed to really come together! The Keel/Hull team worked on prepping the boat for our sensor package. Every member was able to take part and experience using the power drill and the very large bit to drill into the fiberglass. Our Sail/Deck team moved from their paper template to the actual sail. They began drawing everything out in pencil first. They will go back and add colorful details when the sketch is complete. The Media/Tech team was busy with several tasks. Our launch letter was finalized and sent to possible deployers. They also continued to work on the media presentations to highlight our experience. After Thanksgiving, we will test our system, finalize the sail, and begin the antifouling process.

  • Miniboat Logbook 11/30-12/16, 2022

    Wednesday, November 30th

    Today was a very exciting day! The Media/Tech team finished connecting all of the sensors and were able to turn on the GPS transmitter. Once everything was on, we contacted Educational Passages to see if we were transmitting any data. And….we WERE! It was so exciting to see that we connected everything properly, and it was working okay. The Hull/Keel team was then able to secure the water sensor down the back of the keel with epoxy to prepare for applying the antifouling paint. The Sail/Deck team were able to finish the rough draft of the sail, and then they began using acrylic markers to add lots of color. We heard from two potential deployers, who were looking into finalizing plans to help us launch. We can’t wait to see who is able to help us out!

    Friday, December 2nd

    The Hull/Keel team was very busy today. They prepped the hull for painting by sanding the entire area and making sure the epoxied area with the sensor was dry. They then worked with the Tech team on the solar panel installation. The Tech team carefully decided where the solar panel would be fastened on the cargo hold cover. Using a paper template, they marked areas where holes would be drilled to allow for the solar panel wire and small feet. The Hull/Keel team then helped the Tech team drill the holes. The Sail/Deck team completed applying acrylic paint to the front of the sail. The Media team continued to work on a presentation for the school and keep logbook notes. We all worked very hard. 

    Wednesday, December 7th:

    The Tech team worked with the Hull/Keel team to lay out the sensor in the cargo hold and determine the area where the air sensor would come through the cargo hold cover. The Tech team then drilled a hole for the air sensor. They then sanded the area where the solar panel would attach and applied some marine epoxy to seal it. Meanwhile, the Hull/Keel team put on their smocks and began painting today. The antifouling paint was such a beautiful teal color. Everyone thought it was so perfect for our boat! They applied the first coat. The Sail/Deck team completed applying acrylic paint to the back of the sail. Everyone was so impressed with their work! The Media team members continued to document progress and take notes for all groups. 

    Friday, December 9th:

    Wow! We are almost there! The Tech team stuck the GPS transmitter to the cargo hold cover and screwed in brackets to secure it. Then, they went to work on a first draft of the design for the deck. The Hull/Keel team applied the second coat of antifouling paint to the bottom of the boat. The Sail/Deck team worked to finalize the sail, by adding our school name and crew member names. The Media team finalized their presentation to add voiceover next week. We think that we will be able to finalize the boat next week! 

    Wednesday, December 14th:

    Today was busy. We are trying to wrap up the biggest elements for our boat before leaving for the Winter Holiday. The Hull and Keel team, along with several members of the Tech team, worked on reattaching all wires for our sensor package and threading the air sensor through the cargo hatch hold. The Media team worked on a final edit of their miniboat presentation, and the Sail/Deck team worked on the materials list and design for the deck of the miniboat. They plan to include our school mascot, the Skimmer, on the deck. 


    Friday, December 16th:

    The hull and tech installed the sensor today, that includes the air temperature and water temperature sensor. The sail and deck team are starting to paint the deck. They are only sanding and adding the first coat of paint. The tech and team is doing the last log for 2022! We are also finalizing the presentation. Happy Holidays!

  • Miniboat Logbook 1/4 - 1/19, 2023

    Wednesday, January 4th:

    Today was our first day back from Winter Break, and only certain teams are meeting from now on to finish up the last little bit on the boat. The Deck and Sail team met today to finish painting the deck. They also finalized their deck design and drew their rough sketches to complete Friday. The team decided to incorporate a skimmer, a lighthouse, and SIES.

    Friday, January 6th:

    The Deck and Sail team met for the last time today. They painted the top of the deck, and it looks great! Everyone worked together to make an impressive looking boat.

    Wednesday, January 11th:

    Mrs. Ferguson and Avery Drinkard worked together today on creating a logo for our miniboat. After looking at the deck, we decided it would be neat to create the logo and kind of “brand” our miniboat. Using Canva, Avery designed a really cool logo that incorporated waves and SIES Dream Sailor. We are going to get this logo put on a tshirt for all the crew members.

    Friday, January 13th:

    Today, Sophie and Lucy met with Mrs. Ferguson to finalize the boat presentation. Next week, our school is hosting a Coastal Night, where our 2nd grade students will perform ocean themed songs, families can take various coastal classes, and our boat will be christened. The tech team will show our miniboat video at this event. So, Sophie and Lucy added voice narration to the video. We will also show this on our Morning News show to the entire student body.

    Thursday, January 19th:

    We christened our boat today! We showed everyone at Coastal Night our Miniboat presentation. Then, Mrs. Ferguson said a toast and everyone blew bubbles to send our boat on a successful voyage. It was a lot of fun! The next time we will get together, we will be sending our boat out to sea. 

  • March 23, 2023 - Launched

    March 23, 2023

    After a trip onboard the M/V Colorado Express from South Carolina, to Savannah Georgia, and then to Norfolk, Virginia, the Dream Sailor was finally launched into the Atlantic with its friend, Special, about 500 nautical miles east of Norfolk on March 23, 2023. Report from Ryan Guthrie, Navigation Officer on the transit, who has been helping the students with their project, reported the following by email:

    “Launch time was 11:46am. The GPS position of the launch was Latitude 36-04.0’N, Longitude 066-20.0’W.  The ship was on a heading of 104 degrees @ 8.5 knots.  Winds were out of the SSW @ 21 knots.  Air temp was 70 degrees, barometer was 1021.4 millibars.”




    This boat was launched with two GPS systems onboard. Here below is where you can see the data reporting from the second GPS which is connected to a custom sensor package. In addition to reporting location with a secondary GPS tracker, this system is also collecting air temperature, water temperature, and orientation of the boat.

    Please note that the map below will only show the last 7 days of data and may include invalid points and data. If you are interested in looking at the data in a different format from the whole voyage, contact us.