Family Literacy Day is a national awareness initiative created by ABC Life Literacy Canada in 1999 and held annually on January 27th, to raise awareness of the importance of reading and engaging in other literacy-related activities as a family. More than 1.5 million Canadians have already participated in the initiative since its debut. Taking time every day to read or do a learning activity with children is crucial to a child’s development. Even just 15 minutes a day can improve a child’s literacy skills dramatically, and can help a parent improve their skills as well. Read more about the importance of family literacy.
Yesterday was fantastic. Last night it was perfectly clear and a wonderful temperature. After an amazing talent show where the girls sang and the boys danced and acted, we offered the kids the opportunity to sleep out under the stars. Expecting a few to try it, we gathered up one large tarp from the camp.
28 of the 32 students decided that they wanted to sleep outside…needless to say it was a frantic search to find enough tarps for all those sleeping bags. Mr. O. joined the kids outside. When I awoke this morning to grab some photos of the sleeping horde there were still 18 students and Mr. O outside. What an experience. It was like early evening all night as the moon lit up the night sky. I used my ipad and the star gazer app to allow the kids to explore the night sky without all the light pollution from the city.
Today, we race. Teams of 8 will compete against each other in a series of challenges that will encompass all they have learned this week, from canoeing, to fire building, to portaging, to orienteering, it will be 3 hours of action and problem solving. We organized the groups to take the strengths from each student to build on each other and create 4 super groups. May the best TEAM win.
That said we all win because these students have grown, challenged themselves, persevered and conquered fears. We have one student who has never been in the water – is a true non-swimmer – and from his first dropping into the lake he progressed this week to actually swimming 2 lengths of the swim area by himself (with a lifejacket of course) completing the swim test everyone else did. It was inspirational to see the change in him from initial panic to comfortable and enjoying the water and the number of students who cheered him on as he swam that test…So many stories of overcoming fears and learning to enjoy another aspect of life…the list would include almost every student…
I’ll let you know how the day progressed this evening…
The Junior School is back in camp…it was a fantastic canoe trip…the weather co-operated and the food was incredible, last night we had marinated steak, mashed potatoes, marinated vegetables, spaghetti with fresh sauce (for the vegetarians) and also a gluten free pasta for a student who is Gluten intolerant…add to that some tea or coffee, smores, marshmellows, and a great discussion about respect and appreciation around the camp fire and it made for one of the best evenings we have ever had.
Everyone else is having a blast. This morning they got to build their own fire and race to see who could hard boil an egg the fastest…when else do these kids get to start a fire???
Our eight’s have grown so much Amanveer and Nyle have stood out as true leaders during our trip…but they are only two of the many who have taken control of their trip and made it fantastic.
I have to head back for the orienteering challenge.
Jeff the owner of Studentkind is working with our group and has been great….he has a very nice way with the kids…
See everyone on Sunday at 1:00 at the school.
Everyone made it up and the weather has been fantastic, cool but clear and very comfortable. Yesterday was a day of setting up. MJH set up their camp near the paddle shop and the Leadership Camp is set up closer to the lake. After we set up our respective camps it was time to have some fun, the Odyssey went swimming and we played a series of team building games.
After dinner, our guest speaker Brad Hutchinson (author and motivational speaker) worked with the entire group on self esteem and believing in yourself. It was a very powerful presentation with setting that was just as powerful, behind it.
It is easy to forget how beautiful the night sky can be when you’re surrounded by the lights of city. Out here, the stars shine bright and the crisp night air clears your head. We are the only group up here and have the entire run of this amazing camp.
Well, it’s time to pack. MJH leaves in an hour for their trip and we leave tonight. There may not be any more Blogs until we get back, but rest assured, the children are great and creating memories by the minute.
I’ll check back in a couple of days with an update from our canoe trip.
We got through that long weekend traffic faster than we thought possible…
We’ll be there in a few minutes…so time to leave to pick up the kids!
See you all at the school!
Well we’re almost there…we’re in line at the border (Peace Bridge, Fort Erie). The second bus is right behind us…we’re expecting to arrive at TPS between 7:30 and 8:00.
I see from the Blog that the Quebec trip is expecting to arrive around 7:00.
I guess the question is…where is there more traffic? Across the top of Toronto (for the Quebec Trip) or coming from Niagara Falls?
Who will arrive first? No matter who does, I’ll be able to open the school when I get there…
See everyone in a short while…
If anyone was having problems viewing last night’s video of the children, the problem has been resolved and the video is available.
We have just passed through Kingston (at 3:42 pm)
We’re about 430 km away…on the far side of Morrisburg, Ontario.
As I look at the GPS mounted on the front window, it says we should arrive at Niagara Falls by 5:45…we’ve stopped for lunch already and only have a washroom break left before we come home…
Taking all of this into account, I would say we’re looking at arriving at the school by 8:00 or so…
Please check back around 6:00 and I’ll post when we cross the border.