~This blog entry is brought to you from the electronic portfolio of CS5 student Katlyn Wettberg. Conserve School electronic portfolios connect student experiences to the school’s 17 learning goals. Katie is from Sturtevant, Wisconsin where she attends Walden III High School.~
In my final thoughts I have been asked to reflect on the last 16 weeks while here at Conserve School. This simply cannot be done through just words. Therefore, I shall also tell my Conserve School story through photos of my time here and the amazing people I have met.
Everyone here at Conserve is so amazing and genuine. Nobody is afraid to be themselves and everyone gets along so well. This is a very rare occurrence. I wish everyone I met were like the people I have been so lucky to meet during this experience.
Let’s start out with my wing mates. Without them, this experience would have not been as great. I feel as if I have known them my entire life. We bonded right away and I consider all of them to be my sisters. We tell each other anything and everything and have an incredible amount of memories. From the late night sleepovers, to the many food circles, to just simply going for walks, and everything in between, we all have our differences, yet they piece together so well. I couldn’t ask for better wing mates. Thank you too much for everything. Can’t wait to see where you ladies end up!
Gradfellows: The most difficult group of people to explain to friends and family outside of this community. I still can’t explain what you guys are, but I like something about that. Simply put, you guys are amazing. You take care of us and make sure that we aren’t getting into trouble, yet you are so cool. You all have amazing personalities and I wish you all luck in your journeys through life! See you in the future!
The classes that I have taken here have been the best classes I have ever taken. I have never not been excited to walk into a classroom here. Each one is so interesting and fun, which I always have thought to be impossible until this experience. How “hands-on” the classes are amazes me. We are always doing something interesting and, instead of the teachers lecturing and teaching the class, we all teach each other. I will never forget all the times we had classes outside. Paddling on the lake while reading with Michael, throwing snowballs at Jeff, cutting trees with Andy, and simply sitting by the art wing door in between classes with friends are a few of my many memories I cherish here. The teachers here have given me a new perspective on learning, and I thank them very much!
At the beginning of the semester I set a goal for myself. This goal was to learn more about the environment and different ways in which I can help save it and to pass on my knowledge I had gained while here to all of my family, friends, and even strangers. I also wanted to meet great new friends! I believe I have accomplished my goal. I have learned SO much about the environment and things that I can do to make a difference and have met so many amazing new people. I have also been telling my friends and family about all of the things that I have been learning and ways that they can help the environment too.
Looking back at the person I was before attending Conserve School is funny. I feel as though I have changed so much! Before coming here I didn’t find myself outside as much as I am now. I was really only outside while I was playing sports. Now I am outside all the time and feel so much more observant! I noticed this over Thanksgiving break. While I was home I could now spot out different tree species, tell if certain forests and trees were healthy or not, and I noticed that I overall just absolutely loved it outside! I have found myself eating healthier, even over break, and do not care about make-up or what others think of me anymore. I have found myself to be so much more independent now and love hiking boots too!
In the future I can see myself going on backpacking, canoeing, and camping trips as much as I can. I have learned to love everything about them! I can also see myself teaching others so many things about the environment. Conserve School has taught a city girl to love nature more than anything, and I absolutely love it!
To sum it all up, my time here has been absolutely amazing. I am so thankful for this opportunity and all of the people I was able to experience it with. I feel so lucky to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard. Farewell Conserve, see you in the future!
~Katie Wettberg, Conserve School Semester 5
More photos from Katie’s semester at Conserve School.