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ConVal: Finding the key to adventure

  • Harrison Kim and Evan Turner learn about the college admissions process at Camp Sargent. (Brandon Latham / Monadnock Ledger-Transcript) Staff photo by Brandon Latham—Monadnock Ledger-Transcript...

  • Hannah Lehargh at the ropes course. (Brandon Latham / Monadnock Ledger-Transcript) Staff photo by Brandon Latham—Monadnock Ledger-Transcript...

  • Richard Haynes of UNH presents “A Day in the Life of Your College Application” at Sargent Camp in Hancock on June 29, 2016. (Brandon Latham / Monadnock Ledger-Transcript) Staff photo by Brandon Latham—Monadnock Ledger-Transcript...

  • ConVal district middle schoolers complete the rops course at Sargent Camp in Hancock on July 1, 2016. (Brandon Latham / Monadnock Ledger-Transcript) Staff photo by Brandon Latham—Monadnock Ledger-Transcript...

  • Students and staff listen to a lecture on the college admissions process at Sargent Camp in Hancock on June 29, 2016. (Brandon Latham / Monadnock Ledger-Transcript) Staff photo by Brandon Latham—Monadnock Ledger-Transcript...

  • Kryslin Stern at the ropes course. (Brandon Latham / Monadnock Ledger-Transcript) Staff photo by Brandon Latham—Monadnock Ledger-Transcript...

  • Riley Woodberry at the ropes course. (Brandon Latham / Monadnock Ledger-Transcript) Staff photo by Brandon Latham—Monadnock Ledger-Transcript...

  • Students and staff listen to a lecture on the college admissions process at Sargent Camp in Hancock on June 29, 2016. (Brandon Latham / Monadnock Ledger-Transcript) Staff photo by Brandon Latham—Monadnock Ledger-Transcript...

  • Students and staff listen to a lecture on the college admissions process at Sargent Camp in Hancock on June 29, 2016. (Brandon Latham / Monadnock Ledger-Transcript) Staff photo by Brandon Latham—Monadnock Ledger-Transcript...

  • Kryslin Stern at the ropes course. (Brandon Latham / Monadnock Ledger-Transcript) Staff photo by Brandon Latham—Monadnock Ledger-Transcript...

  • Cam Jordan at the ropes course. (Brandon Latham / Monadnock Ledger-Transcript) Staff photo by Brandon Latham—Monadnock Ledger-Transcript...

  • Noah Mertier at the ropes course. (Brandon Latham / Monadnock Ledger-Transcript) Staff photo by Brandon Latham—Monadnock Ledger-Transcript...

  • Jack Goen at the ropes course. (Brandon Latham / Monadnock Ledger-Transcript) Staff photo by Brandon Latham—Monadnock Ledger-Transcript...

  • Everett Benham and Sarah Walker at the ropes course. (Brandon Latham / Monadnock Ledger-Transcript) Staff photo by Brandon Latham—Monadnock Ledger-Transcript...

  • Noah Mertier at the ropes course. (Brandon Latham / Monadnock Ledger-Transcript) Staff photo by Brandon Latham—Monadnock Ledger-Transcript...

  • Noah Mertier at the ropes course. (Brandon Latham / Monadnock Ledger-Transcript) Staff photo by Brandon Latham—Monadnock Ledger-Transcript...

  • Logan Burnham and Cam Jordan at the ropes course. (Brandon Latham / Monadnock Ledger-Transcript) Staff photo by Brandon Latham—Monadnock Ledger-Transcript...

  • Jack Goen at the ropes course. (Brandon Latham / Monadnock Ledger-Transcript) Staff photo by Brandon Latham—Monadnock Ledger-Transcript...

  • Jack Goen at the ropes course. (Brandon Latham / Monadnock Ledger-Transcript) Staff photo by Brandon Latham—Monadnock Ledger-Transcript...

  • Willow Bariblaut at the ropes course. (Brandon Latham / Monadnock Ledger-Transcript) Staff photo by Brandon Latham—Monadnock Ledger-Transcript...

  • Kryskin Stern and Riley Woodberry ready themselves for the zip line. (Brandon Latham / Monadnock Ledger-Transcript) Staff photo by Brandon Latham—Monadnock Ledger-Transcript...

  • Jack Goen at the ropes course. (Brandon Latham / Monadnock Ledger-Transcript) Staff photo by Brandon Latham—Monadnock Ledger-Transcript...

  • Willow Bariblaut at the ropes course. (Brandon Latham / Monadnock Ledger-Transcript) Staff photo by Brandon Latham—Monadnock Ledger-Transcript...

  • Jack Goen at the ropes course. (Brandon Latham / Monadnock Ledger-Transcript) Staff photo by Brandon Latham—Monadnock Ledger-Transcript...


Tuesday, July 05, 2016

Seventy-five students from the ConVal district spent last week learning the Key to Adventure.

For the third straight year, the Peterborough Rotary Club sponsored the group of middle schoolers, allowing them to take part in Quest at Adventure Camp near Hancock’s Half Moon Lake.

Chair of the Quest fundraising committee Andy Peterson says it is a great opportunity for the kids and the district.

“It’s amazing how much it vitalizes their summer,” he said.

The one-week program is hosted at Sargent Camp, a property of Boston University located less than ten minutes from ConVal High School.

Peterson says the point is to keep kids ready for education through the summer, so they can learn skills you cannot learn in a classroom, and so that they might not struggle to get started again in the fall.

“What happens is they don’t know they’re learning,” he said. “But they’re doing math and chemistry and detailed reports and all kids of stuff.”

He gave one example of how this covert teaching works.

When given a problem on a test, finding the volume of a cylinder is an abstract, meaningless idea to the students, he said. The care much more when they need to it know how much water they need to keep a salamander alive.

Eliza Harris, one of the campers, said her favorite part was the physical challenges.

“I liked the high ropes and high elements,” she said. “It’s fun because it’s hard and scary and when you do it you feel accomplished.”

Cam Jordan says the thing he is most likely to take back to school with him is better language.

“They make me run laps if I use bad words,” he said.

What every student will take home with them is their keys, tangible symbols for what the camp hopes all its visitors learn.

The “KEY to Adventure” represents Kinship, Environment, and You.

“Sometimes kids are shy in school,” Peterson said. “And they come out of here with nicknames and they’re the cool kids.”

Lessons at the camp include things like rock climbing and archery, but also team building and workshopping.

One night, dinner was even followed by a presentation on how to begin thinking about college applications.

Peterson said statistics defend the success of the program.

Normally, schools will show a 30 percent drop in test scores from spring to fall, but Quest students actually show a 9.4 jump in the programs first year, 2014.

Rotary members are a constant presence at the camp, proud of the help they are able to give, and looking forward to the fourth edition in 2017.

Brandon Latham can be reached at 924-7172 ext. 228.