Camp Elachee Explorers
Everyone loves a great adventure and campers certainly had a packed week exploring the wonders of the Chicopee Woods.
Camp Elachee 2019: Week 6, July 1-5
This mighty group of Camp Elachee Explorers spent their days learning how early inhabitants of Georgia (Native Americans and settlers) used their five senses to survive and live purely off the land. To get a taste of what it was like, campers participated in sensory activities to become better acquainted with the woods. They also learned how to gather natural materials and use these to build shelters like early explorers such as DeSoto and Bartram had to do as they traveled in the wilds of Georgia.
One counselor introduced an astronomy lesson into her group’s exploration fun. She read them, If You were the Moon, a book describing what the Moon does for ‘Mother Earth.’ Of note, campers learned how the Moon’s position in the night sky can help travelers navigate on land or water.
Campers and counselors discussed how ships are a means of transportation and allowed early explorers and settlers to reach America. Combining a history lesson with creative fun, campers made ships out of paper plates and other recycled items. Of course, competition was involved… it’s Camp Elachee, after all. Campers then raced their boats down the creek to see which watercraft were ‘sea-worthy’ and which were the best engineered for speed.
Team building takes many shapes, but perhaps the most powerful symbol is a flag. Another Camp Elachee tradition, each group designed their own flag. They proudly carried this group symbol around while hiking the trails and roaming in and around the Nature Center.
Building upon this team spirit, campers used their new-found knowledge during Camp Elachee’s scavenger hunt. This infamous challenge inspires teamwork and competitive fun. Groups scoured the hiking trails in Chicopee Woods for hidden clues in an attempt to be the first group to finish. This activity helped groups learn basic orienteering skills, tested their sensory skills making it possible for them to discover cool things in the woods, while also helping them become more familiar with trail navigation.
In the words of fictional character Mulberry Sellers, “There’s gold in thar hills…” didn’t exactly come true for our campers. Even though no one found gold, campers DID find other ‘treasure’ such as gemstones and rocks. They learned techniques early residents used while panning for gold in the Georgia mountain streams. Counselors helped campers identify their treasure and taught them a bit more about each type of gem or rock left behind in their pans.
Summer in the Chicopee Woods is always a magical time for keen observers. Wildlife in the forest did not disappoint! Campers saw snakes, turtles and salamanders during creek play. They became enthralled with finding worms and crayfish at the creek and made it their mission to find as many as possible!
All in all, this week of creative discovery and exploration lived up to expectation.
Read Highlight BLOGS from previous Camp Elachee 2019 adventures.
- Camp Week 1: Water Week Ready for Summer Fun
- Camp Week 2: Sense of Wonder / Wilderness Survival Wonderful Wilderness
- Camp Week 3: Habitat Haven Home Sweet Home
- Camp Week 4: Space Week Out of this World Adventures
- Camp Week 5: Wet and Wild Wet, Wetter, Wettest