Week 8 (2016) – The Declaration of Independence

This week marked the halfway point of our second session at Journey Academy. On Monday, our heroes reviewed their session goals (math, reading, writing, and spelling) and re prioritized what they needed to do. Throughout the week, heroes then discussed topics such asIs it more important to keep your end goal in mind or make each step of your journey an adventure? and When do you feel like you are in your panic zone versus your challenge zone?  The focus and flow in the studio was intense!

Project Time this week has been centered on The Declaration of Independence. Heroes began writing a speech to perform at the final exhibition (from the point of view of one of the signers) and summarized a portion of The Declaration of Independence. This was really difficult for some of the younger heroes, but it was also a great opportunity for some older heroes to step up in leadership! At one point, I heard an older hero asking a younger hero, “I mean, what is the purpose of The Declaration of Independence? Would you want King George bossing you around?”…They are learning to guide each other!!! 🙂

While this portion of our quest has included a lot of teamwork, conflict arose as well. Heroes  have learned how to use the “Peace Table” to calmly discuss their concerns when needed. They also learned to listen to another person’s concerns before coming to an agreement on some sort of action.

To finish off the week,  heroes undertook the fun task of making colonial apple crisp! They were only given the ingredients and a recipe, and they did everything else. I watched as heroes divided themselves into roles: mixing, measuring, apple-washing, reading directions, chopping, and laying apples in the dish. They only had 1 hour to work. Using their skills combined with teamwork, they were able to accomplish the task! Well, almost…

What started as apple crisp turned into cinnamon apples. The heroes were in such a rush to complete the task that an important ingredient was missed… FLOUR! During our end of the day discussion, heroes reflected on the experience and noted that though they split into separate roles, everyone was so concerned with getting the apple crisp into the oven in 1 hour, that they were shouting directions. The noise created chaos, and a feeling of being rushed…So rushed, that no one noticed the missing ingredient! Though the (gluten free) flour was missing, heroes noted that the apples still tasted good, and they could lower the noise level next time to help the focus and flow of the task at hand.

I am pleased to see heroes learning to work independently, learning to collaborate, and learning to find adventure within a task! These are some amazing kids!!

A few of the more interesting discussion topics that came up this week included:

  • If you were a colonist, would you have had slaves? What if you paid them?
  • Is there ever a good time to go to war, or is war a result of poor communication?
  • (1 Corinthians 12:12) We are all part of one body of Christ. How are you different/unique from others in our studio space? How can you use your gifts?
  • Does having a “Pursuit of Happiness” mean that you get to do whatever you want, whenever you want?
  • What makes a hero inspiring?
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