Originally uploaded by Miss Martini (AnnaLynn M.)
Today, we got back from our annual retreat week. This year, I headed out to Joshua Tree National Park with a small group of kids to learn about the desert, go scrambling up rocks, try some rock climbing and backpack out with kids who either haven't gone backpacking or just really enjoy that experience.
There were 5 groups, 6 faculty member and a bunch of naturalists from Naturalists at Large. It was the same program as the last 2 times I've gone but I never get bored with it. I love being out in the desert and sleeping under the stars. It is also a great opportunity to get to know some of our students. From what I witnessed and experienced with them, we had a lot of fun. Our naturalist has a really great rapport with them and they also just had a lot of fun with each other. You never know how the group dynamic will turn out but this group, they really worked together and had a lot of laughs. A lot of the times, some kids will just say with their little clique of friends, even in a group of 10 but this time, they all just mixed really well together.
I have to say, it was one of the best trips I've ever had.
I even pushed my self. I was scrambling, spelunking and rock climbing right along with them. I even made it to the top of one of the rock climbing routes and I'm scared of heights!!!
Anyway, I have a couple of shirts I want to make to commemorate the moments - one being "screaming seagulls" and the other being "trail pizza". Great group of kids who were helpful, supportive and hilarious! I feel lucky to be their faculty chaperone.