Posted by: csdailyblog | August 28, 2009

Community Raspberry-Picking

On Wednesday we kicked off our afternoon Campus Service Team program with an all-school raspberry pick. We have six campus service teams this year: Sustainability (promoting and maintaining sustainable practices), Trail Keepers (building single-track trails), Bikes (running the Green Bike program and maintaining the LRC bike fleet), School Store (ordering inventory and staffing the store), Art Room (keeping the art room clean, organized, and well-stocked), and Peer Tutoring (scheduling and running tutoring sessions). Each team is made up of a mix of staff and students and meets once a week to carry out tasks and projects in these areas. The raspberry-picking activity was a good way for team members (staff and students) to get to know one another better and a perfect opportunity to increase students’  familiarity with campus trails.

Jeff Rennicke photographed staff and students as they collected berries. You can see his photographs of Jake and Kath above, and Ben and Nancy, our Art teacher, below. More of Jeff’s photos are displayed in the photo gallery.

Ben reaches for a heavily laden branch.
Ben reaches for a heavily laden branch. (Photo by Jeff Rennicke)
Nancy up to her elbows in berry bushes. (Photo by Jeff Rennicke)

Nancy up to her elbows in berry bushes. (Photo by Jeff Rennicke)

 Later in the day, Jeff took some photographs highlighting the beauty of the fresh berries. Here is my favorite:

Raspberries and glass jar (Photo by Jeff Rennicke)

Raspberries and glass jar (Photo by Jeff Rennicke)

This year was a great berry year in the Northwoods. Usually the berry season is over by the time the students arrive on campus but, with the unusually cool weather this year, the berries are still going strong. Students enjoyed eating the berries as they collected (who doesn’t?) and by dinnertime the group effort yielded two gallons of ripe red berries. Several students commented that they had never gone berry-picking before, so we felt glad that we had organized an opportunity for them  to try out this northern Wisconsin tradition. I cooked the raspberries down into sauce that evening, and tonight (Friday night) we enjoyed an ice cream social at the LRC recreational center. Besides raspberry sauce, toppings included maple syrup made from our own Conserve School trees.

Sophie and Hannah and raspberry sauce

Sophie and Hannah and raspberry sauce

Gabe and Sophie -- Sophie is balancing three bowls of ice cream to take back to friends in the house

Gabe and Sophie -- Sophie is balancing three bowls of ice cream to take back to friends in the house

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Students Andy, Rachel, and Mariah stayed late to help wash dishes and wipe up all the ice cream and raspberry drips. Below you can see them chatting with Graduate Fellows Ryan and Rachel just before the LRC closed for the night.

Chatting after clean-up

Chatting after clean-up

Included in the  many benefits of attending Conserve School are the close relationships students develop with staff members and the unique experiences students and staff share with one another. So often teenagers’ opportunities to get to know adults on more than a superficial basis is limited, and so they have few adult role models. Here, students share day-to-day duties, pleasant pastimes, and frequent conversations with a wide array of diverse, interesting, hard-working adults who know them well and truly care about them. My children have grown up on this campus, with two attending school here, and these opportunities are one of the aspects of campus life I value the most as a parent.

Browse the photo gallery to find more shots of students and staff members picking side by side.

Mary Anna

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Responses

  1. ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhh……this is absolutely wonderful!

  2. I love these updates. Thank you for doing this.


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