The Grade 7 Orientation Camp took place at Camp Chief Hector in the heart of the beautiful mountains outside of Canmore. The purpose of the camp is to welcome students into Middle School and to provide opportunities for all of them to get to know each other even better whether they are new to the School or have been part of the community for many years.
While there might have been snow on the ground, the enthusiasm of the Class of 2023 was undaunted! After soliciting feedback from the Grade 7s on their camp experience, this is what some of them had to say:
One of my favourite parts of Grade 7 camp was probably the hike just because it really pushed me. In addition, I also got to converse with people I normally would not have a chance to spend time with. I talked with many of the Grade Nine leaders and new kids. Overall, the hike was a great experience and I will cherish the time I got to spend with other people. Some even thought they heard a bear on the trail, thus scaring themselves, only to realize it was the dry leaves rubbing together. This lead to a great laugh for everyone.
My favourite activity was the shelter building. My group built a lean-to out of logs, and moss. When the tests happened, almost no water got in, and it didn’t break. It also gave us the time to work on our team working skills so that none of the logs would fall down and that everyone was happy with the final product. I also liked that everyone appreciated each other’s shelters.
Grade 7 camp was a blast! We did many exciting activities such as archery, hiking, geocaching, bracelet-making, shelter building, and fire creating lessons. Some of my favourite activities were archery where we played many games such as the hunger games where we tried to shoot other players targets. I also really enjoyed the campfire where we sang many sing- along songs.
Grade 7 camp was an amazing experience, because we got to connect and learn more about the people in our classes especially on the team building activity. It was challenging and we had to get through it as a class, and not as individuals. This made us really work together because if one of us didn’t contribute, then the others would not be able to make it through that obstacle. In my opinion, it was a great way to bring our class together, and have everyone communicating and working together.
The Grade 7 class were also fortunate to spend time with Grade 9 students who volunteered to be leaders at the camp. When asked for their perspective on the experience, these Grade 9 leaders all expressed how valuable the experience was for them. They now know many of the Grade 7 students by name; they visit with them in the cafeteria; they learned about their own leadership skills; and, they were reminded of just how much energy Grade 7 students can have!
All who participated, students and staff alike, came home from camp ready to sleep in their own beds, but also very pleased with what we learned about each other and about ourselves. It truly was a valuable experience to kick off the new school year.