Monday, July 18, 2022

Teachers Air Camp: Day 1 (Summer 2022)


 I left Tennessee as soon as I was awake, packed up and ready. There were a couple places I wanted to stop on my drive up to Dayton. It rained the whole drive to Louisville. Luckily it only down-poured for maybe 5-10 minutes, but the rest of the time was that awkward rain where you don't need your wipers on, but you have to keep flicking it because you can't see. Also, its too bright for regular glasses, but too gray for sunglasses.

After a time change, I made it to Louisville around 12:30 and stopped at Biscuit Belly for lunch. I had my heart set on the fried green tomatoes and the Fire In Your Belly biscuit sandwich when I had looked at the menu a couple weeks before, but when I got there I knew there was no way I would eat that much. I settled for the Edgy Veggie, and I'm glad I did. It was delicious! I got my fried green tomato fix on the sandwich, in addition to an over-easy egg, cheese, and mushroom gravy. I would absolutely order that again!


I continued my drive at decided not to stop in Cincinnati after all. I wanted to make sure to get checked in in Dayton and have a little time to rest before the evening's events began.

Day 1 - Monday, July 18, 2022

I arrived to the Marriot a little before 4 and got checked in with Air Camp before checking in to my actual room. They gave us a bag with a notebook, lanyard, and three shirts.  Normally they only give out two shirts, but there was a printing error on one (nothing bad, just a design change!) so we got a bonus shirts!


I unpacked in my room and rested for an hour before heading back down to the lobby to meet the rest of the crew.

My friend Missy from Space Camp found me and we boarded the bus for dinner. We're riding a coach bus all week - that AC will come in handy!! They shuttled us over to the University of Dayton for dinner where we were fed a catered dinner of salad, chicken/pork/roast beef, green beans, mashed potatoes, and delicious brownies.

One of the ladies in charge of camp spoke about inspiring STEM in students and she said something that really resonated with me. She talked about students building their STEM-identity. Students don’t have to want to go into a STEM-career, but it’s important that we inspire and develop the skills in them so that they could if they wanted to. She gave the example of a student starting the school year saying something like “I could never be a doctor, I’m just not capable.” But knowing at the end of the year, “I don’t have the passion to be a doctor, BUT I COULD if I wanted to because I have the skills X, Y, Z.” And I loved that. Don’t get me wrong, I love how many of my students are interested in earth and space science by the end of the school year, but everyone in the world cannot be an astronaut. It’s important to build the skill sets in students that are prevalent in STEM, so they can take those skills wherever their passions do lie, STEM-fields or otherwise.

We played a get-to-know-you game before splitting into one of our sets of groups. They had given different lanyard colors to the different age levels (elementary/middle/high), and that was the group we met with to begin the night. there were about a dozen of us that were elementary I think?

We headed back to the bus and shuttled over to Carillon Historical Park where we met our tour guides for the night. This time we were split into four groups - Alpha, Bravo, Charlie, Delta. Missy and I were both in the Bravo group which was nice. Our tour guide's name was Larry, but we ended up merging with another group whose guide was Ruth. She cracked me up! She was this elderly woman who was just straight up when she talked. She didn't try to be funny, she just was. Her and Larry got along like an old married couple.

At the park we saw a replica of the Wright Brothers' bicycle shop and visited the Wright Brothers' National Museum which holds the 1905 Wright Flyer III. It was their third plane, and the one they found to be most impactful.  It is the second oldest original place still in existence - they're first plane is in DC and their second was burned up. The poles on the plane look metal, but it is all made of wood. The reasons they painted them silver were two-fold. One, because it reflected the sun so people couldn't see their design, and therefore steal it. Two, if people saw it, they would think it was metal and would build their planes with metal which was way too heavy. Basically, they were trying to protect the patent they didn't have yet!



We also saw some originals AND replicas of old transportation, and inventions that began in Dayton.  There was an eagle's nest in the tree that belongs to two eagles named Orv and Willa. They have lived in the area for four years I think they said. We saw two of their babies as well! Fin Fact: It is a $100,000 fine if you're caught with an eagle feather. This is because poacher's were selling the feathers, and saying they found them. The fine helps to prevent that.


The tour ended back where it began, and there just so happened to be a carousel! Larry jokingly asked "do you want to ride it?" and when everyone cheered "yeah!" Ruth said no (it was 9 o'clock which was suppose to be our departure time). We kept asking to ride and they argued about it until finally it was decided that we could. I've never seen a group of teachers so excited!




From there we headed back to the hotel for the night. We were told where we could go for beverages....but I know the time change and having to actually wake up for something tomorrow, plus NOT getting to nap, means I need all the sleep I can get tonight!

You can find all Air Camp posts here:

No comments:

Post a Comment