Just got back from a 3 day school trip to Camp Bernie. My kids new Middle School takes the new 6th graders there every Fall. It is a "team building" trip. It was really great. Most kids in Brooklyn go to grade school near their house. So most kids go to school up to 5th grade with a mostly homogeneous group. Most of my kids classmates were other children of (mostly) white, upper middle classes, uber-liberal parents. Now they are all mixed up with the rest of the kids that live in a larger part of Brooklyn.
For me I was happy to have a new audience for my chaperon jokes. There is nothing like the smile of an 11 year old girl when I take attendance by saying "If you are not here raise your hand." and she realizes I made a joke.
So the middle schools sends them all out to a summer camp to find out what they are made of. 150 6th graders broke up into groups and had to figure out things on their own. Many of the both physically and mentally challenging. Many of the challenges that they had to work out were not in the planned activities. For many it was the first time they had to work together to set up their eating a living arrangements. It all worked out fine, to the surprise of many parents.
I think the kids even got more out of the fact that the trip started out in the rain. They all had to deal with it together.
There was not much hat stealing, but I did notice that some of the girls were showing some of the boys how to comb their hair. Some of the boys did not run away.
Anyway, the next day we got to enjoy the woods. They had to work together on the "Low Ropes"
When the kids where playing, I took a walk and photographed some leaves and mushrooms
On the last day we took a short hike up the Point Mountain Trail. The round trip was about 1.5 miles. Some of the kids said they never walked that far in their lives. That might be true, but they all said the view was worth it.. The ridge of the last hill our guide was pointing at was in Pennsylvania..