This year, my practicum started right away- I was in every day for the first two weeks of September. My placement was at Henry Munro Middle School in a grade 7 class.
The second week of school, I had the opportunity to attend Camp des Voyageurs Tim Horton in Quebec with 95 of the grade 7 students in the school. The students were put in different groups at their tables in the dining hall and for the activities in order to have students get to know each other as much as possible. It was also a great way to mix the students in the French Immersion program with the ones in the English program.
The students participated in a variety of team / community-building activities such as archery, soccer, tag, survival, orienteering, nature walks, arts & crafts, karaoke, bingo, and many others! The staff ran all the programming and were so enthusiastic and welcoming. The last night there was a campfire with a very funny skit from the counsellors!
The program at the camp focused on student leadership and community-building. While we were there, the students received reflection journals that outlined eight steps to becoming a community leader; each day focused on a different theme. While we were there, we focused on goal-setting, peace, relationships, teamwork, and challenge. Back at school, we thought of and implemented ways to give back to the school and the community including a food drive and making sandwiches for the homeless. The students will then return to camp in February to celebrate their successes through the next steps: responsibility, motivation, and reflection. Once completed, they will receive a necklace with eight different coloured beads for each of the steps as a “certification” of community leadership.
Overall, I thought that the camp was a wonderful experience. It allowed the students to get to know one another, and it allowed me to see them in a different light (outside of school). My practicum ended in December, so unfortunately I won’t be joining them for camp in February, but I wish them the best of luck on their journey to become community leaders!
For more information about Camp des Voyageurs Tim Horton, visit their website.