Monday, February 9, 2015

Fifth Grade Camp, 27 Years Late

Sophie and I were at 5th grade camp last week!!  Her camp was called Camp SEA Lab. We were at a campus located in the town of Seaside, Ca. This was south of Santa Cruz, North of Monterey.  We were, indeed, "seaside". The camp is on a cliff overlooking the ocean.  It was fenced off on the cliff side (although it was about a waist high fence), and there was a gated path down to the beach from camp.  Our groups meeting spot was at a lookout facing the ocean and every time we would meet up we would see migrating whales, and dolphins, and surfers. It was really, really neat.  Activities included a lot of beach time. Oh, I should mention it was around 70 each day. : ) We learned about the water shed, did a sand crab recording activity, campfire on the beach at night, learned about plankton and watched them under microscopes, dissected a squid....and then ate it, learned a lot of games, got up early to set the tables for 100 people.....and lots of other fun things!  The highlight was kayaking at Elkhorn Slough.  I mean was so cool. I've wanted to kayak my entire life. I had been looking forward to camp mainly for the kayaking, and it was as amazing as I imagined it would be.  We got up close to sea otters, seals, and sea lions. There were also pelicans everywhere, which are my favorite bird.   It was amazing, and I can't wait to go back with the rest of the family.
As for camp life, I was in a girl dorm with around 20 girls, 4 of us moms, and the teacher was in the dorm, but had her own room.  The girls were very well behaved, as soon as the lights went off it was quite. My "pod" during the day was 16 kids, girls and boys, and 3 moms plus the Naturalist. As an aside, the Naturalists were all great. These "kids" (mid 20's) all had at a minimum a BS degree in their fields, which were like marine biology and that sort of thing. Super smart, AND positive, even with the brats, and there were a few.  Our pod was named the "Cephalapods".  Google it.
We were up no later than 6 each day, had breakfast at 7:20, and then we were on the go all day, with the last activity ending a tad after 9 at night. Meals were family style, and we ate with our pods. So big bowls of spaghetti, or plates of chicken, mash potatoes, get it. After breakfast we would line up outside a room, and then walk through and make a sandwich with whatever we wanted on it - ham, turkey, swiss, american, lettuce, tomato-then bag it and put it in our pods crate.  At lunch time, they would bring out the crate from the cooler, and we had our lunch. They also provided things with it, like celery sticks, oranges, granola bars, or apples.  There was an hour of free time for the kids, but they had to be chaperoned during that time, so it was not free time for the parents. They had from 7-7:30 with their teachers...that was my free time!  I would hit what became the chaperon room for coffee and a snack, and then call home or text home, or go sit in the dark and watch the waves, which you could see at night. was a blast!!  I'm working on a picture post, but wanted to get this writing stuff out of the way. I have to be careful with the pictures as we don't know who signed the "photo use release" and who hasn' I have to watch out for other kids faces.  Or you can just promise to only see Sophie in the pictures and save me a lot of work editing : )

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