Friday, May 23, 2014

DUG Teaches 2nd Graders About Camping

Today, I had the honor of speaking to the 2nd graders of Cross Bayou Elementary School about the joys of camping. These kids were GREAT! They listened attentively, showed sincere interest, took great notes, and asked excellent questions. It was just another reminder of why our ministry loves kids, invests in kids, and helps introduce them to God's amazing playground - the great outdoors.

On a side note, one of our all-time best volunteers, Janessa Jannarone, teaches at Cross Bayou. Her daughter, Garcie, is in 2nd grade. Janessa and her husband, JC, met on a GTD event over 10 years ago. It was wonderful to see Janessa & Gracie and be a part of their camping and outdoor recreation school lessons.

The entire class lasted about 1 hour. I started with an introduction of myself & GTD and then explained the programs that we run. I showed them a 4 minute GTD highlight video of many of the adventures that await them in the wilderness. The kids loved it. After the video I began to teach them about the difference between base camping (usually done with gear that can be brought in by vehicle) and backpacking (which is done only with the gear that can be carried in your pack). They learned about checklists and the many items that go into a successful camping trip. I showed them tons of gear and explained "The 10 Essentials" items that you should always have with you while camping. These kids were phenomenal. Several had already experienced camping before with their family. They were eager to share their stories and ask smart questions.

After the class was over some of the kids showed me their notes and helped me pack up my gear and take it outside where their teachers had prepared another area for them to learn about camping. Tents had already been set up and the students continued to learn more about getting outside and enjoying nature. It was a terrific time =)