As a senior advisor (SA) who went to Camp Jewell as a sixth-grader, I was very excited to go back seven years later; however, when I got to advisee group Tuesday morning before Camp Jewell, the current sixth-graders made it very clear to me that they were not so eager to head to Colebrook, CT for two nights. They were overcome with fears about the food, being disconnected from electronics, and sleeping away from home. In an attempt to settle their nerves, my co-SA and I made a pros and cons list on the whiteboard at the front of the classroom, showing them how many more pros there were to going to Camp Jewell than having two normal days of school. The pros list included no homework and, of course, that we would be joining them for one of the days and one of the nights.
On the bus ride to Camp Jewell, the other seniors and I reminisced about our years in the Middle School and recalled a few of the memories we still had from seven years ago at Camp Jewell. There are eight other SAs who were in sixth grade with me, so it felt really weird to be back seven years later with them. When we got there, one of my peers exclaimed that he remembered everything being so much bigger around camp but perhaps we were just a lot smaller.
Personally, I was very excited to get away from class for one afternoon and one morning and to spend some time outdoors connecting with my advisees. While my fellow seniors and I were there, we participated in various activities such as candle making, boating, archery, a game called Predator vs. Prey and a campfire. Honestly, these activities were all pretty fun.
We ate two meals while we were at Camp Jewell, so of course we also got to participate in the ort report. For those of you who don’t know about this long standing Camp Jewell tradition ,let me explain it to you. Basically, after the meal you bring up any leftover food that you and your table did not eat to get weighed. The entire group then joins in on a song that goes something like “Ooh ah ort report, I said ooh ah ort report,” before hearing how much waste they had from the meal as a big group. The goal is to have no left over food meaning that your table took just the right amount of food for everyone to eat. Unfortunately, the other seniors and I were only able to participate in the ort report at dinner because we had to rush out before the breakfast report in order to get back to class.
Having one afternoon and then leaving during breakfast felt like such a quick trip. I wish we had more time at Camp Jewell and did not have to hurry back to school. I am very grateful for the time we were able to spend in Centerbrook, but going back to school in the morning and heading straight to class after the busy day was very hectic. We got back to school at around 10 a.m., and I felt so tired and gross . As I looked to my peers, it was so obvious we all just wanted to go home and take a shower and have a nice nap.
Overall, I am so glad I got to join the sixth-graders on this trip because it was genuinely so much fun and now after the trip during advisee group I can really see how much they bonded during those few days and unsurprisingly ended up enjoying the two nights in Centerbrook, Conn.