All in the Circle Camp Format
Through councils the children develop the skills that are essential to healthy relationships with others and the Earth community. Every year the theme is woven throughout four areas of study. Thus the camp tells the thematic concept or story from these different creative forms of knowing.
Through story, council meetings and nature based activities, the campers will experience the wisdom gained from looking at the world we live in from a “bird’s eye view” and “as the crow flies.” At this stage of development, children and youth often have flying dreams and like Leonardo Da’Vinci, are possessed with trying to figure out how to fly. It seems that early on, we as humans have an instinct that drives us to take on the wider vision or the viewpoints of others in order to understand our world and our individual place in it. The nature-based classes will help bring these instincts to awareness.
In nature class, facilitated by a Master’s level nature-based therapist, campers will learn to express their insights and feelings, listen to others, and work through conflict with imaginative, sensory, and nature-based play.
The experiences in the nature classes help bring to life the theme of the camp and create the meaning behind the art classes and music.Through imaginative, sensory and nature-based play campers learn to express their insights and feelings, listen to others, work effectively through conflict and act as a team to navigate adventures and challenges.The curriculum, developed by AJ and Erin Pratt, is inspired by the work of: Richard Louv, author of Last Child In the Woods, David Sobel, author, professor and director of Antioch Center for Place Based Education and psychologist, Bill Plotkin, author of Nature and the Human Soul, and others.
The nature component will be taught by Erin Pratt. Erin has her Master’s in Wilderness Therapy and brings many years of experience working with children, youth and families in nature-based settings.
Puppet and Mask Making
Under the direction of professional artists that are experienced in the Heart of the Beast style mask and puppet making, campers will be constructing flying creatures, residents of tree canopies and billowing cloud formations. These creations will become part of the musical theater celebration. The campers will then have the imaginative power to fly and understand themselves as members of the Sky community.
Children will experience the aliveness of the sky that envelops their world through song and dance. The rhythms of the Council of the Sky will reverberate through their play of drums, xylophones and glockenspiels. Through the voice of song and instruments, the children will speak for the Sky residents.
This musical experience will be finely crafted under the direction of internationally known Master Orff instructor, Mary Helen Solomon. The Orff music approach being used allows for children with past musical experiences to grow in the complexity possible with the instruments while allowing beginners to be successful as well.
The campers will be guided by professional dancers and Heart of the Beast trained instructors in how to move their bodies and artistic creations through the Sky. This will be coordinated with the music and stories that help bring to life the theme of the camp.
Community Arts and Crafts
Based on the skills, gifts and interests of the community at prospect park and the larger MNIPL community volunteers will offer activities such as from beading, to kite making, hula-hooping, woodworking. This is a rich intergenerational relationship building part of the camp day.
On Friday of the second week of camp parents, freinds and community members gather as the campers share the stories of camp, with a final celebration showcasing their visual art, music, movement and nature experiences.