We started off the last week of the Experimentory with a field trip at Look Park in Northampton, MA. The students and staff who went to the park loved all of the activities. Mr. Kelly and Sam even cooked up a great barbecue! Media proctor Abby Shepherd talked to students on the bus back to Deerfield Academy.
Here at the Experimentory, we keep students busy with organized activities and classes during the weekdays and weekends. That being said, some of the best photographs on my camera are during unstructured times. Today at Look Park, I took great joy in being able to watch our students have downtime to swing on monkey bars, splash in a mini-waterpark, and paddle aimlessly on boats.
William Y.'s favorite part of the day was running around the field playing soccer. He told me on the bus that this field trip was special because "other trips are more organized, and this was more relaxing." He said that he enjoyed getting to know his peers more because it was a less serious environment than what he experiences during clusters.
Charlotte enjoyed the field trip for a unique reason. She told me: "today, after doing everything, it feels like I'm reliving childhood memories." For example, when Charlotte was younger, she couldn't do the monkey bars. Today, she did. The other field trips were fun, but today was different. She found that "ropes course was more for kids our age, but this was free time and we were able to act like little kids."
|Peter waves hello from upside down on the monkey bars. Spiderman, anyone?|
Many photos we've shared include students working diligently in clusters and studio to maximize their character and creativity. However, seeing a carefree side of our students today taught me how facilitating the development of young people includes not only academic skill-building, but ice cream, swing sets, and throwing around a football. Other students agreed with Charlotte and William, and I understood what they meant. Our twelve and thirteen-year-olds had just as much fun splashing through sprinklers as the other (much younger) children who were at Look Park that day did.
The best part of my day? Hearing about how many students were planning on reapplying for next summer.