I dare you to throw 92 sixth graders on two buses, and take them to camp for two days.
Think twice before you say, ‘No sweat.’ This includes (but is not limited to) cabins without bathrooms inside, some bugs and girls who are scared of them, fishing (including baiting the hook), climbing up a telephone pole to whirl across a zipline, the logic puzzles of high and low ropes, making plaster of Paris masks, a muddy hike and just a little personality thrown in for good measure.
Our sixth grade teachers plan and pull off this outing each year, and this year brought my middle daughter’s turn. It’s such a coveted trip, I guess the teachers put the chaperoning volunteer names in a hat, and draw to see which parents get to go to camp with the kids.
Yes, I got to don waterproofed tennis shoes, jeans and jackets to head to camp with my girl. And I was impressed.
Archery, wagon rides, and bonfires, oh my. How much adventure and laughter can you pack into two days?
This event entails an enormous amount of work, and I applaud our teachers for giving the kids such a special memory, a camp experience, which is not all that common these days.
The way they go about this camp experience reminds me of two wonderful Bible verses.
Do your work willingly, as though you were serving the Lord himself, and not just your earthly master. Colossians 3:23 CEV
Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last; but we do it to get a crown that will last forever. 1 Corinthians 9:24-25 NIV
I don’t know the spiritual status of all the teachers. But I know God put something in this team of teachers, a go-for-it mentality and heart that He is using to do good things in these kids. So, hats off to North Polk’s sixth grade teaching team, including the band teacher who brought her toddler out to see the kids.
The camp adventure makes me think, too. It sparks introspection. What challenges am I accepting? Do I really push myself? What am I part of that’s bigger than me, that I could never accomplish on my own? Am I touching lives?
What an honor to experience two days of camp with such a great team of chaperones, camp staff, teachers – and kids.
I would live it again in a heartbeat. Next time, even though I’m petrified of heights, maybe I’d get a chance at the zipline. Yep. Right after I scale the telephone pole.