Camp Day 2: Sun, Waves, and Hip Waders

Today was data day! And the weather was much more cooperative than Day 1. Jill and I rode the beach up to Charlotte with the campers after partaking in Harambee again, but with April this time. A few new servant leaders joined each of the groups as well as a few new campers that missed Day 1 due to religious commitments. Today we continued to build our relationships with the campers and grow their identities as scientists. Local news stations came by to take some photos and video of the investigations which got the campers exceptionally excited about being on the news, and being given credit for their work.

We continued to build a meaningful and safe learning environment by including all the campers involved by doing data collection in small groups, so that they got more hands-on experience with the DataHubs, as well as working in small groups before sharing out to the whole team to blend ideas and improve confidence in the campers’ abilities. I, personally, made significant strides with a camper, M, who was very disengaged during day 1 and even more so during day 2. M needed significant prompting to uncover his ideas and thoughts on a topic as well as to build his model. By sharing my ideas between the two of us verbally or textually first M was much more likely to respond to me in a agree/disagree fashion. From this experience I think it’s important to continue one-on-one instruction with M to make sure his voice is heard.

I worked with the two girls in our group to collect data from the six locations pre-selected along the beach (thanks to Eric). Unfortunately our DataHub refused to respond to pressing on its buttons to change the modes for multiple variable collection after one site (for reasons unbeknownst to me) which left my group bagging water samples and getting temperature readings. Here’s to hoping the other groups had better luck than we did.

The day did fly by. Between materials set up, (another huge shout out to Eric), suiting up and down with the waders, vests, gloves, and goggles, model creation, and data collection we were left with barely any time to plate for bacteria but it did get done by the campers before they got their exceptional sandwich lunches and were whisked back to the Freedom School.

As a group we did very well with materials management by prepping in advance the journals, writing materials, and safety equipment for data collection. We also did well staying on time with our activities even after the campers arrived about 20 minutes late, which I guess is a testament to our prep work. As a group we needed more work with accepting different campers participation styles which was evident through M’s work and engagement today.

Individually I am very proud of how I began to break through M’s ‘walls’ (so to speak), I spent a good chunk of time while we were sitting at the picnic tables working with him to get his ideas onto paper. Also, I think I did well helping the girls in my group collect the data while making sure to teach them proper techniques (this was especially evident while plating bacteria at the end of the day). I think I could have worked on my team’s background work today, as well as on my ability to step off the bus and still be up to speed and ready to work with the campers. This I think (/hope) is something that will come with time … and more sleep!

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