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Sun, 20 Sep 2009

Fifth Grade Camp

I got out of the car on Sunday, the first day of camp. I'm really glad we got there when we did, otherwise, the suspense would have killed me. The first day of camp went somewhat like this, mind you this was four o'clock in the afternoon.

First, we sat down all our luggage and I waited for them to call out our cabins. What surprised me was that, instead of calling out our cabin names, they asked us to form a big circle on the grass. Everyone got an animal sound to make and we got out our blindfolds and put them on. Then we had to make the sound while blindfolded and find other people making the same sound. I got my friend, Patrick Slifer in my cabin. We were the owls. Barracks three got some good cabin inspections.We went to our cabin, set out all our stuff, and were called back to begin the small cabin games.

First, we went with Mr. Powell, the gym teacher, into the woods to prepare the campfire for the night. We got big logs and trundled them down a steep path to a clearing in the middle of the forest. Mr. Powell then asked us to put down our load and to go up for another one. On the way, we noticed stuff we hadn't on the way down. One of the people in my barracks got so scared by a beehive that they actually ran back down into the clearing so that Mr. Powell could protect them from the "evil bees."It was really fun because when we got back, Mr. Powell was spraying lighter fluid on the logs so that whenhe lit them the logs would become dried out and ready for the night's campfire. What prickled me most, however, is that Mr. Powell, expert woodman though he was, left the fire unattended, breaking many of the outdoor camping rules.

Next station, we did "tipsy dizzy" broom races, where we were to spin around the broom so many times until we were supposedly dizzy, then we were to run around a cone and back to the line where we were supposed to high-five the next person.

Next station was "castle defense." Someone guarded a bowling pin while the rest of us a ball around and tried to confuse them enough so that one of us could take a shot and knock over the pin. If they did, they would become the new guard. I was actualy pretty good at it.

Next station, we were designing our cabin flags.We took rubber bands and put them all over our flag in target patterns, so that it could be tie-dyed. Part of the station, we were to take the flag outside where a teacher was waiting with a bunch of natural and man-made dyes. We were to dip parts of our flag, well actually, first we got to guess at what the natural dyes were made of. The red dye, which I got to guess at, was made of raspberry. One was made of walnut, one was blueberry, and another was made of lemon. The lemon one did not produce a very strong color. Then(!) we started dipping our flag in the dyes. The blueberries and raspberries produced the best colors of the natural dyes. The man-made dyes all produced strong color.  

Then we had dinner. We all brought dinner from home. One of us, actually got moldy bologna It was not me. We all looked at the expiration date on his lunchable and it said sell by June 21st 09. And this is in September! Then we went back to our cabins for an hour. We played games then.

Then we went down to the campfire. We sang camp songs (and unfortunately as this was a school activity we did not get to eat s'mores.)When we went back to our cabins, took showers, got on our PJs, and went to bed.

The next morning, our cabin teacher, Mr Torretta (my orchestra teacher), played Star Wars on the speakers he'd brought. He just tapped into itunes on his laptop, hooked it up to his speakers, and voila! intant awakeness.

We had breakfast, a yummy and rather bland affair of cereal, including everything fifth-graders like to eat, including Marshmallow Mateys, more Marshmallow Mateys, bran flakes, and more Marshmallow Mateys!

Then we went back to our cabins for a few minutes, got properly washed up, and then went down a trail to a meadow in the middle of the forest, not the same clearing where we'd had campfire. Here we had whole fifth grade games. Firs, we learned things to get people quiet like "class A cheer' "class B cheer" and "a boom-chicka-boom" All the cheers included some clapping. Then Mr. Readaman, the main teacher for fifth grade camp  (an old art teacher of mine who is now retired) told us a legend about an Indian legend about a certain Chief Walksalot and his brother, Gripesalot. Then he had us all get in a circle, facing the person beside us. And we sat down on the person's lap behind us. The person in front sat on our lap. We did this for a whole minute!  He told us that if we found a carved stone figure of Chief Walkalot and told him where it was, he would give us a candy bar (Igot a Mr. Goodbar over this happy

Next. we created the Camp Derricot race track. We were split into ones and twos. The ones formed the inner circle and the twos the outer circle.  Then we got out a big ball, the size of a small elephant (seriously) and Mr. Readaman got between the circles and we were supposed to run him over with the ball by pushing it. I thought this was rather funny, seeing as Indiana Jones had run from a similar boulder. We ran him over and he was not pleased. And he asked us which was faster, a car or an airplane? We said airplane, but we were wrong. Pushing a ball over many peoples heads was not nearly as fast as rolling it along the ground. When we kept the ball off the ground, Mr Readaman could easily outstrip the ball, in fact he was just easily jogging behind the ball. We also did this withour pricipal. She could do just as well as Mr. Readaman at the airplane, but we almost got her with the car. This was a fun game. 

Next, we went back to our cabins, washed up and had lunch. Lunch was pretty good, pizza (the bread truck didn't come so we didn't get our promised spicy chicken sandwiches.) At every meal we were encouraged to have seconds, and at breakfast we were allowed to eat as much breakfast and juice as possible. 

Then we were split into our classroom groups to do a buch of different activities. My class, Mrs. Necherman's class, did the ropes course, which worked on problem-solving and teamwork skills. It was fun, but slightly dangerous. For example, one of the things we were supposed to do was escape froman electric fence (actually it was just three ropes between trees, but you get the idea.) Jacob Gnolfo cut his hand after he jumped off a log bridge we had created from logs we'd found inside the fence. Other things we did included the catwalk, the balance beam, cooperative skiis, and the web of life, which consisted of thirteen hula-hoops positioned in a web pattern. The objective was to get all your people to the other side without touching the hula hoops (if you did, you had to try it all over again). Each huls hoop could only be used once and there were only four ion the ground. With our team work, we managed to do it within our first three tries, but getting people over was no piece of cake. First, we sent our bigger people through the bottom four. They would help us by helping people through because if they were not there people would just drop to the other side and they could hurt themselves. Then we sent our slightly smaller people (tall but not wide) through the second highest up hoops. There were three layers of hoops. Then we sent our smallest people through the top. I went through the middle.

Then we went back for a good dinner. This ended our second day of camp. I will write about the rest of camp soon. Check back for more interesting stories. 

posted at: 11:38 |

Thomas Andrew Hall St. Peters, Missouri 

Page created: 09 November 2008
Page modified: 09 December 2017

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