November 2019  
Camp Fitch Information

As I said in the Facebook post, I am a parent who attended the student meeting at school while my child was out of town and unable to hear it himself. If you have more specific questions, I would appreciate it if you would ask them directly to your child's homeroom teacher. 

I understand the sentiments expressed on nervousness. We also have our own reasons to be thinking things through in detail, but what I overwhelmingly heard from the teachers who spoke was this same attention to detail in the planning and execution of this event. Everything that I took down as notes, I'll include here. 

The kids learned what will likely be one of their camp phrases, but it will be an important one - "Hands up, mouth shut." It will be the way the teachers and chaperones encourage 200+ students to quiet down simultaneously. The kids did a marvelous job on this immediately during the assembly. 

Drop Off: The request is to drop between 8:35am - 8:45 am so the younger grades can get into the building before the 5th grade gathers. Luggage can be dropped as early as you wish. Teacher names are on windows in the back of the building. Look for your child's homeroom teacher's name, and leave their luggage there if you have to go to work and your child rides the bus to school. It was strongly noted that luggage cannot be transported on the morning bus to school and nothing can be loose. For example, it's great to bring a stuffed animal, but it has to be in a bag (trash bag, duffel, or luggage). And, students also have to be able to carry their own luggage. 

Busses will leave school in two waves - the first leaving at 9:15 am with five homerooms, and the second at 9:30 am with the next five. Students need to hand all medication to their homeroom teacher and all medication needs to be in a clear zip lock bag, well labeled (and a reminder to label all clothing was also shared.). Sack lunches will be collected before boarding the bus. Chaperones will help load luggage at the school (thanks, chaperones!), and students will be seated on the bus and travel to camp by homeroom. 

Suggestions for a fitted sheet and no sandals (except for shower shoes) were clearly recommended by the teachers. The need for gym shoes, and suggestions for including shoes that are waterproof, shower shoes, and a raincoat were also highlighted. 

There was also a discussion about no electronics, including digital camers, but the students were encouraged to bring disposable cameras. 

There will be no stops between Nord and Camp Fitch. Encouragement should be given to remember a final bathroom stop before boarding. 

Students were also encouraged to bring a flashlight (labeled with their name) and a small pack for carrying a waterbottle (like a "fanny pack" or string backpack). 

Students were encouraged to take short showers, and students with long hair were asked to consider showering at night to help the morning flow through the bathrooms. 

Students will find out their roommate/cabin assignments and group/chaperone assignments on Wednesday morning. when they receive their nametag. Because of the number of students to number of available beds, there will be no switching groups. Students will generally have at least one of their requested names as one of their roommates (the only time this may vary is if a student pulled out at the last minute). The students were encouraged to see this as a good time to meet and get to know other kids in their grade that they may not know - when they are in their roommate groups and/or their chaperone groups. 

Lights out is at 10pm; wake up is at 7:30am. 

There are 47 parent chaperones signed up to go with the students, and the kids were reminded that many parents took time off from work to be a chaperone. The teachers shared that kids have been sent home, that they wish to not send anyone home, and to treat their chaperones with the same respect as anyone at school. 

Return pick up: All the busses will leave camp together but will drop at two locations - Family Fellowship Church (which has been recently renamed as Grow Point) and Nord. Please check with your homeroom teacher if you do not know the return location for your child's homeroom. I did not write down the five going to Family/Grove and the five going to Nord. 

Return pick up should happen around 2 pm. Nord will have the exact timing and we are encouraged to call the office to verify. I also expect this will be communicated on Facebook. 

The teachers ended with a challenge to the students. (Disclaimer: This was new material. I believe I have it correct, but if you hear differently from your child's teacher, please follow their information. Things can, as we all know, be misunderstood and I want this to be information, not a record set in stone. Thanks!) The student's calendar will be collected at the end of September and the number of days with no marks will be counted. If the child has 80% or higher with no marks, they will be invited to attend a reward party at the end of the month, which will include activities. The only part of the calendar that will be considered will be the middle section, not the bathroom notations. If, however, the child has received a detention or an office referral, they lose the invitation to the party for that month. October and November will be combined months; however, if a detention is received in October, they can redeem themselves in November and still attend. One teacher noted that this basically comes down to 4 clear days per week for the month to attend the party. The teachers ended by sharing with students that they will be keeping a list of anything that should be noted on a calendar, but because the students were requested to leave all school work and calendars at home, this will be added to their calendar after their return from camp. 

I was impressed and pleased with the level of detail the teachers have put into this experience for the students. They highlighted over and over how they are excited they are to have this time to get to know the students better in such a wonderful and relaxed setting. It was very refreshing and encouraging to see. 

I hoped this helped answer some questions for folks who have questions. I'll be deleting this information from this website once the kids return from camp.