Sunday, October 17, 2010

Nature Adventure Class - Week 2

My MooseBoots path, indeed my life, has been moving at an incredibly frantic pace, both professionally and personally.  The good news is that I have re-adjusted my priorities and feel good about the path I am on.  I do not know where it leads, but it feels right.  My newly adopted priorities are family first and work second.  I have reached a turning point ... I am working toward something new.  I am working to live, instead of living to work.  This has manifested, recently, in my attendance at weekly Nature Adventure classes and monthly Outdoor Skills classes, to the chagrin of my bosses (and perhaps, too, of the recently visiting customer).

So, on a rainy, dreary Wednesday afternoon we gathered.  The group met inside, but all was not lost.  We played a number of awareness building games.  I find, in homeschooling and in life, people learn better through play with no conscious effort toward learning.  At least, my kids and I do.  The first game was for one person to sculpt an animal using imaginary clay and the rest of the group to guess the animal based on the non-verbal clues.  Some rounds, the rules only allowed local species.  Others, kids were allowed global selection.  This game morphed into acting out your chosen animal.

Next, we practiced awareness.  We played a few games.  First, we had people stand in front of the group.  Then, these people left the room and changed a few things ... rolled up sleeves, removed earrings, etc.  Then, the person(people) would return and the group had to observe the differences.  To make the game more difficult, after a bit, we sent multiple people from the room and changed different numbers of things on each.  The culmination of the awareness games was an observation test.  We divided into two groups.  The whole class was shown a number of objects on a bed for 30 seconds.  Then, we, as a group, listed in as much detail as we could all of the things on the bed.

After, we were divided into three groups.  Each group was given a skull of a local animal.  The object was to study it and determine its species.  We payed attention to the aural cavities, the nasal cavities, and the eye sockets to identify them.  Then, the groups all gathered and each acted out its animal.  I was impressed with Big, Little Sister, who immediately knew that our skull was a Red Fox (not to be confused with Redd Foxx, whose skull is shaped very differently).  I'll leave the other two for you to identify below.  I guess Wendy was right ... I should have brought my possum skull.




The finale of the class, was a bowdrill demonstration.  Now, I thought Wendy was the only one who would not complain too much about the smoke of using one of these indoors (I have done it once), but ....  Mike lit a fire in the house using the bowdrill.

Overall, the class was amazing, in spite of the rain.  It is such a treat to take time to do and learn things that are so beyond that which most people even think to wonder.  My MooseBoots journey has certainly been enriched by the opportunities that have been presented, and by the fact that I have dared to take them.

17 comments:

  1. This was the summer I was supposed to perfect my bow-drill technique, but I am sad to say, it just didn't happen. There are still a few nice weeks of fall left, so you've given me incentive to squeeze it into this year yet...

    I loved the observation exercise - great skill-building, too.

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  2. You didn't mention that the bow-drill fire at the class was lit on a tile floor, but that you were lighting the fire, in our house, on our 'WOOD' floor ;).

    Did I mention to you that I really, REALLY appreciate your newly adopted priorities? :) It's nice to be first ... ;).

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  3. Oops! on a WOOD floor? What were you thinking Deux ex Machina???? (sorry, I've got to take Wendy's side here...;)

    I'm glad you did figure out the priorities on your own - I had to give my husband "the talk" just very recently, probably after going through the same thought processes as you..Life is too short, we are too important to each other...it's that simple...

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  4. Julie, I have been working with the bowdrill, too, but have not perfected the technique. I pick it up when it strikes my fancy.

    Wendy, thank you. I am pretty happy with them (my new priorities), too.

    Wendy/Julie, I was on the WOOD floor right in front of the woodstove so that I could chuck everything in if I needed to. I was being careful(ish). Besides, the smoke detectors didn't even go off ... which is a wonder in itself.

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  5. I dont have a clue what the skulls are! Cant wiat for you to tell us... you are going to tell us right???

    "Careful(ish)"- LOL

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  6. Leigh, I will tell at some point....

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  7. Hmmm... I see that I will have to investigate this a little farther... dont tell the answer yet, Im going to give it a go... Be back soon.

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  8. Raccoon!??!???

    http://www.boneroom.com/bone/smallmamskulls.htm

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  9. Leigh, none of the three is a raccoon. The top one, I'll give you, is a red fox. The other two are different species, but they are local to my area (hint, hint). Thanks for the link.

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  10. ERR... Back to the drawing board.... Another hint??? How large are they? Small Med Large?

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  11. No...no badger. The bottom one (because it is difficult to see well) is a bobcat. That only leaves one more ... I am from Maine ... maybe the University of Maine website has something (hint, hint).

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  12. Aye, I almost guessed that but thought it too small! Your killing me here!!!!LOL

    BRB. ;)

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  13. Ugh! Could ya tell already? I just can't bear the suspense!

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  14. So, the skull in the middle is .......... an american black bear. Thanks for playing along.

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