Wednesday, June 25, 2014

2014 Summer Trip Whiskeytown

Hello future and past IYELERS, this year’s summer trip of 2014 with the IYEL crew was at Whiskeytown. Whiskeytown was definitely a very interesting place to visit. Why Whiskeytown you may ask? Whiskeytown is a beautiful National Park that includes a lake, waterfalls, hot temperatures and biodiversity. It is what some may say, the perfect place for a summer trip because of the opportunity people have to swim into the National Park’s lake with perfect temperatures for the summer. The team also got the chance to kayak at Whiskeytown lake with the whole group, this gave the team a chance to work together as pairs on one kayak boat shared with two IYELERS. 
The IYEL team focused on creating four fun and educational lesson plans for the trip that focused on freedom because of Memorial Day weekend and Whiskeytown’s history. The lesson plans were presented by the four groups throughout the summer trip to keep excitement and energy flowing. We also wanted our fellow IYELERS to appreciate their time at the beautiful National Park by learning more about it, and realizing how freedom is important to them today. One of our groups focused on Social-Freedom and the way they expressed how Social-Freedom is important to them is by introducing the topic to us at the top of a waterfall, where they talked and had us participate in a game that made us realize about the water advantages the U.S.A has vs. other countries like Chad.
The group that focused on Whiskeytown’s history presented their lesson plan to us by a really beautiful beach that was near our campsite. They had us learn all about the gold miners because a lot of them would visit this National Park before it was a National Park because of all the gold nuggets it included. They also had us work together as a team in the beginning like the gold miners did. We learned a lot of history about the national park from this group because they were reading off a lot of statements and they wanted us to figure out which statements were true and which statements were false. This way we actually got to learn a lot about the park by having a little fun at the same time.
Our last day at Whiskeytown, a different group did a lesson plan about being thankful about each other and why it’s important to be thankful for the people around us. This lesson plan included a props activity where everyone had a card with their names written on the card and everyone in the group wrote a prop or why they were thankful for that person. This lesson plan made us appreciate one another a lot more, and it made us a stronger team knowing that we are all thankful for each other.   
Our trip to Whiskeytown was definitely something we are all going to take away with us. We all learned a lot about the National Park and its history, and the importance of freedom to us today. But the most important part of this trip is that it made us a stronger team. We got the chance to spend a lot more time with each other and to appreciate each other’s company, and it also gave us a chance to reunite with some old familiar faces which are the IYEL alumni. We were very glad to have them around and spend some time with us so that they can share their wisdom with all of us.

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