25 July, 2008
The realization is setting in that this is indeed our last day together at camp. We even had to say goodbye to one camper that left a day early. However, at breakfast, conversations were overheard concerning making the most of the last day and make it the best yet. What a great mentality to have!
Starting the day off in a positive manner was a reflection of on first impressions of camp and campers. This is an important introspective activity designed to analyze their default instincts, stereotyping and prejudices they may have. The campers then wrote a letter to themselves about their learning and memories of LTC. What an opportunity to receive this in a few months from now.
After lunch at the hotel, we participated in our final group reflections and evaluating our own goals for camp. The groups then presented their thoughts to the camp. Then it was off to pack and the final time spent in the village.
In the evening, we had a closing ceremony and had a final disco. It was a mixture of emotions. Many campers were both happy to be having fun with their friends but also sad to know they will be leaving tomorrow. We learned a great deal over the past two weeks about ourselves, our new friends and the necessary steps and skills it takes to become a leader. Hopefully we will see each other again!
24 July, 2008
The campers then had the chance to shower and get ready for the beach. A quick lunch followed then it was off to Le Bouveret to take advantage of the warm weather. Campers were able to take in the magnificent scenery while exploring the park and taking a dip in Lake Geneva.
Then in the evening we had an interesting exercise called Red/Blue. This is an activity that requires many different aspects of leadership. Teamwork, planning, goal setting, communication and problem solving were just a few. The solution to this game of negotiation is not straight forward and difficult to achieve the campers realized. However, the learning that took place was inspiring.
Click on the link below to see LTC photos for 24 July, 2008
23 July, 2008
Reaching the mountain hut around 5:00 campers were very hungry and ready for the barbeque. Hamburgers, sausages and salads filled the campers and some even attempted to do some of the cooking themselves. After eating, we had a camp fire with dough boys (sweet bread cooked on a stick over the fire). Then we had a series of activities from camper led skits to a night reflection with candles.
It was an amazing sight to see all of the campers spread out across the meadow with candles and silence. What a magical evening. The mountain hut is always a special time. Tomorrow we return from the hut and then headed to Le Bouveret Plage for a little R&R for our tired bodies. Stayed tuned!
Click on the link below to see photos from 23 July, 2008
July 22, 2008
What a beautiful morning! The warm weather will be a perfect fit for our day of outdoor adventure.
To start the day, we had a very challenging activity called Bigger or Better. This is a competition designed to practice the leadership skills of teamwork, taking positive risks, utilizing your environment and planning. The activity is a task of taking a seemingly valueless object and negotiating a trade to receive something bigger or better in return. This is not easy to do. However, if a leader is willing to draw the best out of the people and surroundings you never know what one can achieve.
Afterwards, the campers were split into two groups, grabbed some sunscreen and a warm change of clothes to go rafting and canyoning in Rougemont during the afternoon. It was a perfect mix of warm weather and cold refreshing water. This adventure is a terrific activity to expand students comfort zones and get know themselves better.
Campers were anxious to get back to camp for a hearty meal and take a shower. The topic of the evening was lateral thinking. Problems do not always have an easy solution and a leader must be able to explore the many option available to overcome the dilemma. Campers realized, through our activities, this is a learned skill and they have the ability to improve on lateral thinking if they commit to it.
What a fantastic day. It is amazing to see the close friendships that are developing, it will be difficult to say goodbye in just a few days. However, tomorrow we have more memories to be made when we make our trek to the mountain hut for our overnight stay. Stay tuned, this is always a special story.
Click on the link below to see LTC photos for 22 July, 2008
21 July, 2008
The Power of Lateral Thinking
The weather has remained cool and cloudy this morning but it has not dampened the spirits of LTC. The campers were jazzed from the autographs given by Tom Williams, the former Olympian speaker we had last night.
In addition, we had a rewarding morning ahead of us with Mr. Roger Ratner, owner of Village Camps at the Classic Hotel. He introduced problem solving techniques and strategies that all leaders need to develop. He emphasized teamwork, lateral thinking and the ability to communicate effectively.
Then it was back to the Central Residence for lunch and getting prepared for the afternoon. The groups were split in two for part two of the sensational salad competition and the water day on Lake Geneva. Luckily the weather cooperated enough for us to enjoy the experience of learning to wakeboard, ski and tube amongst the mountain backdrop.
The salad competition was intense. The groups displayed great teamwork and culinary skills while creating some of the tastiest unique dishes our judges have ever tasted. After dinner, our group went back to the local football pitch for a passionate game of football.
This is a tremendously sporty group with a lot of skill. Tomorrow we are hoping the weather improves a bit as we are headed rafting or canyoning. What a rewarding day we had in Leysin! Stay in touch for tomorrow’s stories from the river.
Click on the link below to see LTC photos for 21 July, 2008
20 July, 2008
Many campers enjoyed the sleep in today. Comments of being refreshed after our long but fun day yesterday were heard over breakfast. In addition, the fantastic weather has continued, which is perfect for our activities today.
After breakfast, the campers had an opportunity to examine the importance of development and maintaining trust in relationships, school and the workplace. Through a series of fun and education activities, the campers realized some techniques and commitments it takes in order for trust to be established.
The afternoon was even better! The campers had the choice of ice skating, beach volleyball, basketball or tennis. All of the choices appeared to be a hit as many campers participated in all four. This was a quick but very fun day.
In the evening, we had a chance to further develop our teamwork, communication, lateral thinking and problem solving skills. The campers had several dilemmas to overcome but required the use of all the above skills. This was extremely challenging yet rewarding. Today was a very full, fun and rewarding day.
Tomorrow we have Mr. Phil speaking of effective leadership in the morning, part two of the sensational salad competition and the water day in the afternoon, and a sunset campfire at Profandaz in the evening. Hopefully the good weather continues!