Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Inter-Island Field Trip: First FULL Day!

After a good long sleep we woke up bright and early Tuesday for our first FULL day of our field trip! We had breakfast and met in the dining hall for morning meeting.

We circled up to go over the events of the day.

We did a morning greeting... which of course the middle schoolers thought was super lame!

Two of our beautiful middle school girls excited to head off for the day's event!

We left the camp and traveled to Solon, Maine to meet with Barry Dana. Barry is a former chief of the Penobscot Nation in Maine and an AMAZING teacher. He offers many different programs and outings to educate children and adults about Maine native studies!

We walk about 1/4 of a mile into the woods to meet Barry and his wife. They had a nice big tent set up with a fire going to keep us warm as he gave us our first lesson of the day...

He taught us how to build a wigwam!

He went over the basic structure with everyone and had the kids work together to figure out how to get all the pieces to come together!

Then it was time for the kids to give it a try! They ran off into the woods collecting materials and working within small groups.

Olders and youngers worked together to make the wigwams!

I have to say the youngers were the best at gathering sticks!

Dalton became a leader of his group.

And Quinn was a work horse!

The wigwam is coming together!

I worked with two of the older boys from Islesford! Look at our wigwam! It is almost done!

Quinn displaying how he would use his wigwam for shelter!

Ms. Eysnogle fits quite nicely in her group's wigwam!

Happy little wigwam makers!

One of my group members... playing dead?

After about two hours of making wigwams (we loved every minute of it) Barry came around and assessed everyone's shelter and gave pointers of how to improve it. We then had lunch around the fire.

Speaking of fire... Barry next showed us how to MAKE fire WITHOUT using matches.

He carved out a fire stick and board from cedar, tied it with a rope and rubbed it quickly together on top of tinder... which then resulted in fire!! Sounds easy... but it is SO not.

Mr. H from Cliff made it look easy though. The kids called him the "Fire Breather!"

Quinn gave it a try...

We used the fire Mr. H created to roast apples!

Roasted apples are like the new smores!

But don't worry about all the fires we had going, we had our own personal fire fighter with us!

Some of the apples went beyond getting roasted and just got burnt!

After we roasted apples it was time to go on a little walk... but not just any walk. Barry talked with the kids about how native people hunted by stalking their prey. They couldn't just walk up to an animal and spear it... they had to move quietly and slowly and sense everything around them in order to be a successful hunter. They had to listen and feel.

To try and have the kids really understand this concept he set up a course for the kids to walk in the woods, but they were to do it blindfolded AND barefoot.

This was no easy course mind you. They had to go over logs, through brush, and between rocks and trees. They moved quietly and very slowly. They heard every twig crack and felt every rock and leaf under their feet.

Even Anne tried the course along with a parade of youngers.

I was impressed by how seriously the boys took the course. They made it through without too many scraps and bruises and got the idea of the amount of patience and restraint it must have took to hunt in the woods with nothing but a spear!

After a long and full day outside the kids were beat and ready to head back to camp!

But there was no rest for these guys... it was their turn to help make dinner! Spaghetti was the special of the evening!

AND they had clean up duty too! Good thing the camp had a super awesome dish washer that did a load in 90 seconds flat! The kids were literally fighting over who got to clean up after dinner!

We ended the night with yet another fire (this time we used matches) and some smores!

What a GREAT day!

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