Seventh graders visit Camp Dodge

Over the course of three Wednesdays this fall, seventh grade students from Miller Middle School traveled to Camp Dodge in Johnston, visiting the Iowa Gold Star Museum and participating in the Leadership Reaction Course (LRC).

The activity was planned and sponsored by the seventh grade social studies department as a way to promote some of department’s curriculum components, as well to encourage concepts that are in line with the District’s PBIS (Positive Behavior Intervention Supports) initiative. 

The LRC is designed to challenge groups in problem solving, communication, teamwork, and overall analytical ability. The course is broken into 12 stations: five dry obstacles and seven wet. Each team enters their obstacle from a concrete tunnel, and then begins the work of developing strategies that will help them get from side of the course to the other side using only the tools provided.  Some teams managed to stay dryer than others, as the consequence for making mistakes resulted in some team members falling into the water. 

Staff organized students in to groups of seven or eight and funneled the entire seventh grade through this course over the span of three consecutive Wednesdays in September and October.

“As this course was new to most of the staff, it was a real adventure for most everyone involved,” said Brett Comegys, seventh grade social studies teacher.

Students also toured the Gold Star Museum.  The state’s military museum, the Gold Star Museum gives all who visit a glimpse of Iowa’s rich history of service to the United States. People who walk in the doors not only get to put their hands on displays relevant to the many eras of Iowan service, but they also get access to the real life veterans who run the museum.  Not only were students immersed in Iowa history, but they also got a chance to connect with a great source of pride for their state.

“In the end, the trip was a big success,” Comegys said. “Staff and students alike enjoyed some great weather and everyone had a chance to utilize outside resources to expand the student learning environment beyond the confines of the four walls that make up their classrooms.”