On October 31st ,Tony (our elementary class’ outdoor expert), led us on an exciting journey to our very own Berkeley Park. First we found sticks and waited for the sun to come out (we were lucky to have the sun’s cooperation that day). We put our sticks in the ground on a flat surface and found the end of their shadows, then we marked that spot with a shorter stick.
Tony then talked to us about finding landmarks and telling stories to help remember where things are. The class broke into two groups and each group hid an item somewhere in the park. They each made up a story to tell the other group about where their “treasure” was hidden and then took turns finding the hidden treasure based on the story. It was a lot of fun and it got them thinking about the landmarks in the park.
About a half hour after the initial marking, we gathered back at the sticks and found the shadows again. We found that the shadows had moved to the right a couple of inches. We once again marked the end of the shadow with a different stick. Then Tony showed us how to use a fourth stick, and lay it down in a line connecting the two marker sticks. This showed us where west and east were and from there we could find north and south. We learned how to use the sun to navigate!
We then headed back to school. Along the way Tony encouraged us to look for landmarks and make up a story about how to get back to school from the park. We all worked together to notice landmarks and to use our imaginations to come up with names to describe them.
Back at school, we said good bye to Tony, sat down and worked on a story together as a group. We got a rough draft down and started on drawing a map. It was very fun and we plan to continue working on it. We renamed Berkeley Park ” Dead Wood Forest” and Puddletown School “Doug Fir Island.”
We can’t wait to learn more with Tony but for now we will have fun using the skills he taught us last Friday!