Seventh graders took a three-day journey on “the road of life” and encountered many twists and turns as they headed out into the countryside of Korea for Week Without Walls. The students and their teachers started at a farm where they learned about planting and harvesting sweet potatoes.
The winding road then took them high up in the clear blue sky as they ziplined through the trees, over rivers and ravines, and across swinging bridges. Of course, all the screams were of joy and not fear! The day ended with some reflection time and classwork, as well as team-building activities. Day two continued the fun, learning, and sharing as we headed to our service-learning project, where we had various activities planned at an assisted living facility. It was an excellent opportunity to share and give back to those who might need a little sunshine in their lives. Students painted a mural for residents to enjoy, presented a talent show, taught the residents how to square dance, and gave an origami class — hopefully brightening their day as much as they did the students with their laughter and joy.
The group then made their way to the river where blue skies and perfect temperatures again greeted them and made the time of hiking, kayaking, and dragon boat racing quite enjoyable. There were a lot of happy wet kids, and everyone stayed safe. The night finished with a talent show where the students showed off their acting and comedy skills, as well as encouraged each other, applying our annual theme of valuing and being there for others. The trip ended at a high ropes course where the students demonstrated their teamwork and problem-solving skills as they traversed high beams, catapulted their friends safely up in the air, and tried to defy the laws of gravity. It was great to see different students put themselves out there to overcome their fears and try new things, and even better to see the other students rally around them, supporting and cheering for them.
The best life lessons come from the journey, not the destination, and we hope that is what students take away from this experience. Life is like a week without walls: you need to get out there and experience it, learn all you can wherever you are, and connect with the people you meet on your way. For more photos from the trip, view the photo album.