This past week, everyone in the semester started to clean up, finish up work, and organize activities because two things were approaching. One was the end of classes; the other was the 80+ parents and family members who were going to arrive on campus. This meant that planning had to be done– such as organizing and scheduling activities. On Friday night, a slew of parents arrived ready to see their kids and meet the teachers. It was so interesting for me to see how similar looking the students and their parents looked. Then on Monday morning, the day began with a game the students re-created that is called “Bill is Coming” which involved forming different groups of people to create certain formations. For example, if someone called “Bill is coming!” everyone would have to find Bill and salute him, and you could only lower you hand if someone else said, “Amos is here!” (Amos is Bill’s son.) After that quick warm-up, parents chose two activities that the students led. Some examples included a species walk, mauling wood, a Chewonki walk, spinning and weaving, and Outreach. I led Outreach with my friend Eric, where we showed the parents the Outreach lab, which consists of injured reptiles or illegally-kept pets. It felt really great to show the parents and explain to them what I have been doing with my free time here at Chewonki. After the activities, we had what I considered the highlight of the weekend: parents vs. student dodgeball game. This was a game everyone took seriously, balls were dodged, bodies were thrown to the ground, and you could hear everyone panting from exhaustion. Of course, the students came out on top with a victory.
After an exhausting morning, students needed to prepare for dinner while the parents went to a meeting with Bill, and got a show from Lynn that consisted of the injured birds at Outreach. Next, there was an amazing art show put on by students that featured works of art such as paintings they did in class, field journals, phenology projects, and knitted articles of clothing. Then there was the finale of the night—the Decomposers (Chewonki’s a capella group) sang five songs directed by Amy Rogers, a few students were selected to read sections of their blogs, and Abby Holland put together an amazing slideshow featuring snippets of our semester. The pictures had dated back all the way to the second day when we were all out in the field harvesting potatoes and onions and all the way up to a dodgeball game we had played that weekend. After the slideshow we thanked Bill and the faculty who helped make this week come together, and then it was time to say goodbye to some, and get some well-needed rest. The next day was the start of Thanksgiving Break and I was sad to leave Chewonki, but I had no fear, because I was back in 8 short days.