Campers had a blast traveling through time at SPREE holiday camps on November 20-21!
Monday's mission had us focused on exploring the Native American tribes of Colorado's plains. The Arapahoe and Cheyenne lived along the South Platte River for thousands of years and are still around today! We worked on reenacting three different aspects of their daily lives around 200 years ago: food, shelter, and lore.
For our food activities, we focused mainly on hunting- especially bison! These tribes, along with many others, are nomadic. One of the reasons they traveled around is that they were following herds of their main food source- bison. These animals were an integral part of their lives- they had a use for every part of the animal! We played a game to help us figure out what each part was used for. In another part of our activity, we explored different hunting methods that Arapahoe and Cheyenne used. We acted out one method where hunters used to disguise themselves as bison and use a sneak attack!
Next, we learned more about the homes that many Arapahoe and Cheyenne used to live in. Tipis were a type of home made of logs and hides wrapped around them. These homes were around 12 feet tall and could be taken down in about an hour! These tipis were lived in because they lent themselved to the nomadic lifestyle that these groups lead. They could be easily put up and taken down, and they could be traveled with when the group needed to move to a new place. We studied pictures of tipis, had a challenge to build a mini tipi, and drew our own stories and designs on paper tipis.
Our third activity focused on the stories that were told by Native American tribes. We discussed how history, stories, and information were passed on by stories because there were not always books or the internet to keep and share information! We read and acted out three different stories- "How the Beaver got His Tail," "Two Fawns and a Rabbit," and "Nihancan and the Mouse's Arrow."
Our last activity was critter crawl! We went down to the South Platte River and caught crawdads and macroinvertebrates.
Tuesday had us a little more recent in Denver's history and we reenacted the lives of the pioneers that traveled out to and settled in Colorado. First, we explored the journey of the pioneers by building mini covered wagons. Then we talked about what we would need to pack for our 6 month journey! We had a big list of items to choose from, and could only pack up to 2,000 pounds. What a challenge!
Next, we worked on our map following, trail following, and navigating skills. We completed a scavenger hunt, made obtacle course trails in the park, and learned how to make and use our own compasses!
Our third activity was about reenacting the lives of the pioneers after the settled in Colorado. we brianstormed all the chores that would need to be done each day and got to do a few of our own! We collected and carried water, did laundry in the river, and acted out collecting wood and bison chips! Then, we played some pioneer games and wrote in our pioneer journals.
We also got to practice crafting like pioneers by making our own yarn dolls.
We wrapped up the day "fishing" in the river and seeing if we could catch any crawdads and macroinvertebrates.