This week, I had a wonderful opportunity to be a camp counselor to a group of fifth graders. I have up a week of my time and classes to attend camp with this amazing group of counselors and I could not have asked for a better week.
I have never been an “outdoor-sy” person. I grew up in the suburbs outside of Philadelphia and my family never went camping. I was a Girl Scout and I did attend summer camp for a week and I did go camping with a friend for a week but that is the extent of my outdoor knowledge.
I was able to learn a lot about the earth and everything the earth has to offer this week at camp. I thought that I would not be doing much learning because I am a college student and not a fifth-grader, but this experience proved me wrong. I learned much more about our planet earth. Earth gives us a lot of things that we take for granted, so it was amazing to learn about everything the world has to offer.
This group of fifth graders changed my life. I did not think that a group of small children could influence my life forever. They have taught me so many things that I would not have been able to learn without this experience. Fifth graders are amazing at coming up with cheers, singing songs, and knowing when and how to have fun. It is much easier for a fifth grader to have fun than it is for adults. It was fun putting myself back in a ten or eleven-year-olds shoes for a week during certain activities. We sat around a campfire, sang silly songs, learned some crazy dances, and had a lot of fun.
Without this opportunity, I would not have been able to get away for a week and discover more about myself. The campers helped me learn more about myself and taught me things I never knew before. I was able to get away from technology for the week and lay in bed at night and think about what life means to me. How do I want to make life fulfilling? This week definitely made me appreciate everything this world has to offer us.
I am going to miss singing songs around a campfire, eating three square meals a day and being around a group of energetic children. It is back to the real world for me, but like the directors say, “You may leave Outdoor School but Outdoor School will never leave you.”
I knew education was the right profession for me, but this experience solidified my feelings. I cannot wait to get into the classroom one day and teach a group of students around this age. I hope that one day, in my future school, I can take my students on an immersive week-long field trip like this one.