Adventures on the Street of Ships

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South Street Seaport Museum tells the story of how New York’s great natural harbor gave rise to the metropolis we know today. Central to the story of New York City is the story of the ships, the people that sailed them, the cargoes they carried, and the businesses that served them. Students visiting our Tall Ships experience all this and more, without ever leaving the dock.

Browse through our various programs below or e-mail for more information.

Board the barque PEKING at the pier and experience the world of trans-Atlantic sailors through hands-on activities.- Tour the ship: living quarters, navigation station, after deck with the ship’s wheel, and more
– Haul on ropes to raise sail at the dock
– Learn how sailors slept, ate, worked, and played
– Learn about the importance of ships, cargo, and commerce from the time of the Explorers until today
– Aligned with New York State social studies curriculum standards

What makes a ship sail? Wind, muscle – and the mechanical advantage sailors get when they use pulleys, levers, and other simple machines. Climb aboard the barque Peking at the dock and learn the physics and math behind a sailor’s tools
– Experiment with different pulley rigs to discover mechanical advantage
– Find out how the rudder, the ship’s wheel, and the capstan all use math and physics to help sailors do big jobs
– Working together with your classmates, use these simple machines to raise sails and other heavy loads
– Aligned with New York State science curriculum standards

Board the Lightship Ambrose at the pier and feel what it was like to work at sea on a navigational vessel.- Tour the ship: living quarters for sailors and officers, work rooms, engine rooms, radio rooms, and deck
– Haul on ropes to raise sail at the dock
– Experiment with anchors to learn how a ship stays in one place
– Learn how to navigate with charts and compasses, and learn the role of lightships in navigation
– Lights, horns, radios… learn how sailors communicate at sea. Ring the bell!

Aligned with New York State Science and Social Studies standards.

About our dockside vessels:

The PEKING was built in 1911 and operated for many years as a cargo ship crossing the Atlantic and around Cape Horn.

The Lightship AMBROSE, also available for tours, was built in 1907 and served as a “floating lighthouse” in lower New York Bay.

All programs are designed for groups of up to 34 students (40 people maximum including chaperons).

All programs are aligned with the Common Core Learning Standards, Next Generation Science Standards, New York State Math, Science, and Technology Learning Standards, and New York State Social Studies Scope and Sequence.

Programs can be customized to meet your curricular goals and the needs of your students. Other topics include city and port history and the harbor estuary environment.

Reservations and advance payment required.

Limited scholarships are available.

To book a program, or for more information please e-mail or call (212)-748-8753