Monday, October 2, 2017
Nature's Classroom is a highly anticipated part of the Upper Elementary year. Last week our 6th grade students and Miss Janice traveled to Wakefield, RI for the week. They were joined on Wednesday by the 4th and 5th grade students and Miss Liz. Located on Point Judith Pond, with saltwater beaches both sandy and rocky, a fresh water stream and an estuary, the Wakefield, RI site offers students a wide range of environments to study and explore. Students bunk in cabins, eat in a dining hall (we are told the food is GREAT!), share in the tasks of serving and cleaning up, and delivering the daily musical ORT report (the amount of food that is not eaten at each meal - with the goal being to keep that amount as small as possible).
Students spend the morning in "field groups" exploring the environment, learning new skills, and working together to solve challenges. In the afternoon students choose from a variety of special interest classes that range from dissecting a shark, squid or crab, building a geodesic dome, or doing a "pond probe" by sampling the water and studying the creatures they find there. This year students were excited about building boats and learning what makes them float (or not), learning the physics of frisbees and building a shelter in the woods.
Our elementary students returned Friday afternoon and all were happy and tired, excitedly greeting parents and siblings and sharing stories of their week. They will share the story of their adventures at Nature's Classroom with students and teachers this week at Friday Morning Meeting.
Another Summit tradition surrounding Nature's Classroom is that Lower Elementary students wave the travelers off and then welcome them back home.
This year the return took place after dismissal so Lower El students flashed their welcome back signs Monday morning on the elementary playground!