Note: This event happened April 4. I waited to post it, hoping I’d get some pictures from the class. Here it is without the pictures.
Snow. Snow. Everywhere. White snow covered trees. This afternoon a group of students from Niles Adventist School are connected to Kiglauit Adventures participating in the Mushing Alaska program. We almost didn’t have the program because Alaska has had a big spring snowstorm and some of the mushers were snowed in.
The program started with a live dog run around the area. The dogs were so excited to run they were jumping straight up in the air. The students watched the run so intently, realizing they were watching the run live. The dogs were barking because it was so hard to pull. After one time around, Christina asked the students if they wanted to go again. The second time around the kids yelled “gee” to tell the dogs to turn right several times. (And the dogs actually heard them!) The students loved it!
Next we had a chance to ask a few questions. One of the mushers came in with one of the dogs to explain more. We learned about the fur, muscles, and the deep chest. Then the students asked many more questions. We saw pictures of puppies and the Iditarod, maps, and a live dog modeling the harness.
We ended with some interactive activities to help the students understand how the musher gets along with the dogs. It was great to get all the kids up and moving about.
It’s not too often any more that I get to watch kids new to videoconferencing participate in a videoconference. Today I realized afresh the importance of interaction. When the first student answered the first question correctly, he was ecstatic with joy! He said, “I feel so important!” Kids get a lot of affirmation from the interaction in these videoconferences! That makes it all worth it for me!