On the second day of the student’s camping trip to Eustis, Maine, they set out into Flagstaff lake on canoes for an exploratory adventure. On the way out, the wind was on their side and they were able to reach a lovely cliffside destination by lunchtime.
The way back, however, was much more challenging due to high winds and a brief rain shower. One camper had this to say about the canoeing trip: “During the trip back on the canoe, we had a little trouble. We got through it by being positive and smiling it out.” Unexpected challenges like this became opportunities to discover unexpected strengths within oneself or a group.
That night, the discovery groups made brownies and other treats and set off on an adventure to see a moose! One discovery group was lucky enough to see a mother and child moose wandering around the forest. It was a fun-filled respite from all of the physical and emotional challenges and a wonderful capstone experience for the students’ camping trip in Eustis.
Days Two & Three
The students returned to the Hyde campus and spent most of the day settling back into civilization. After dinner, they were introduced to the Community Service program that they would be participating in the following day.
The next day, the students set out in the morning to four different Community Service locations: Morris Farm, Collinson Farm, Roots & Fruits Preschool, and the Chocolate Church Performing Arts Center. The organizations greatly appreciated the student’s help and the students gained a valuable experience in humility and generosity.
In the afternoon, the students engaged in more Performing Arts. This time they learned dances to popular songs that they will be performing for family weekend.
The students began their day with a good portion of curiosity curriculum. Due to rain, the beach trip planned for the afternoon was replaced with student leader-run activities. There was basketball, music, and movies to play and enjoy with friends.
That evening, the discovery groups participated in a competition called Flashlight Karaoke in which each group has five minutes to come up with a song to perform for three different prompts that will be chosen at random.
Once the flashlight points at a group, they must dance and sing their hearts out to the song in order to get a point for best performances in the round. The winners were the Zimbabwe Fire Ants (Discovery Group Four) for a wonderful ode to Beyonce in the final round.
The students started their morning engaging in more curiosity curriculum as well as discovery group meetings. In discovery group, they dug deep and talked about themselves and their lives while listening and giving feedback to the rest of the group.
In the afternoon, they hit the stage for their performing arts auditions. An audition here at Hyde is a minute-long a capella performance of a chosen song in front of the entire discovery group.
Each person completed their song, some more nervous than others. Everyone showed a great deal of courage in singing so openly.
Next, the students hit the gym for some kickball and crab soccer. Crab soccer is a game in which you have to score goals with an exercise ball while walking on your hands and feet with your chest upward, like a crab. Both games were a lot of fun, both to experience and to observe.
After breakfast, the students headed out to Monhegan Island–a small, historic Maine island with beautiful views and a peaceful atmosphere. They were asked to enjoy the day while attempting to write poetry about anything and everything they want to write it about.
Some walked up to the lighthouse for a better view, some stayed at the shore for a nice beach day. Most wandered about the island, perusing the unique shops and observing the way of life and nature on the island.
That night, all the students gathered together back on campus for a cozy poetry night, where everyone sat comfortably around the fireplace and read the poems they had written on Monhegan Island. A few read inspiring poems by other authors and it became an unexpected bonding experience as many in the room could relate to the words that were shared.
On the final day of this week, the students were given a day off. There were opportunities to go to the movies and to go shopping all throughout the day. It was a relaxing way to end an action-packed week without losing the chance to hang out with friends.