September 13 through 16, students from grades 5-8 attended Outdoor School at Camp Lawroweld. The pictures displayed show the canoeing excursion to Mt. Blue State Park. Most of the students in grades 7 & 8 signed up for canoeing. Students spend time on the water familiarizing themselves with the basics of canoeing. They learn how to do a t-rescue with another canoe, some basic paddling strokes, and a few survival tips for the outdoors. In addition, they painted a bathroom for the rangers at Mt. Blue State park as part of a community service project. A highlight of the experience is a night paddle. God's glory is definitely visible through the nature all around us!
Pine Tree Academy's junior class enjoyed three weeks of touring historical sites in Massachusetts and Rhode Island, September 11-13. The tour focused on the infamous Salem witch trials of 1692 and New England's maritime history with a visit to Salem, Massachusetts. Monday focused on the Gilded Age with tours of the Vanderbilt Marble House and a servant's tour of The Elms, home of the Berwinds who earned their money in coal. The theme of Tuesday was presidents with stops at John Adams' and John Quincy Adams' birthplaces, as well as their family mansion. The last stop was the John F. Kennedy presidential library.
As the teacher, I thought it would be interesting to have our seniors’ reactions to being immersed in French once again. Spanish and French are taught at PTA through the “Teaching with Comprehensible Input” method (TCI) which is based on telling stories with a controlled vocabulary. After three days of classes, we are finally through the syllabus and on to our storytelling method. Here are some of the seniors comments after listening and responding to the first story of the year.
“Coming back to French class is awesome. I like the new classroom and I love that I can still actually remember French from last year. It sort of feels as easy to understand as English.”
“My brain’s on fire because I’m learning a lot, but the good thing about French class is that I remember a good amount of the words from last year.”
“I’m surprised I remembered as many words and terms as I did.”
“After not learning more French over the summer I thought it would be a little difficult trying to get back in the swing of things in this class, but actually it was Okay. I like the new classroom and I’m enjoying being back in this class and learning more French.
“Being back in French is a little difficult because I haven’t been using any French over the summer, but I remembered a little more than I thought I would.”
“Entering French II after a long summer break, I was surprised to have retained as much information as I did from last school year. Listening to the stories is no longer intimidating because I’m able to translate in my head.”
It looks like our seniors possess a positive attitude as they march forward into their second year of being bilingual. I will try to create a productive and learning-rich environment in French II as our students continue to advance. Vive la France!
Anne Goorhuis, World Language Teacher
For the past three Fridays, Pine Tree Academy's archaeology class has been working at the Swanson Farm site located at Mast Landing Audubon Sanctuary in Freeport, Maine. This project is being sponsored by Pine Tree Academy and the Freeport Historical Society and led by registered archaeologist, Norm Buttrick. It will continue throughout October and November, weather permitted. Work accomplished to date include the opening of nine pits and the recovery of several artifacts including hand cut nails, glass, pottery fragments, and a pewter button.
Attean Pond to Holeb Pond to Moose River back to Attean Pond
35 miles on the water
2 miles of portages
On Friday, September 9, 2016, the senior class of 2017 left for their senior survival trip. The first stop was Camp Lawroweld where they had a church service on top of Tumbledown Mountain and then learned the basics of canoeing on Webb Lake. On Sunday, they made their way toward Jackman, Maine. The students battled strong winds, some rain, long portages, and a lack of food on the part of some of the boys. Luckily the girls kept them nourished. The group popped corn over the fire, and participated in team building activities. Surviving in the wilderness, they made their way back to civilization on Thursday the 15th. Special thanks to Brianna Payne, Derek Boyce, Sara Huston, Jessica Larson, and Jon Larson (nicknamed Mr. Grylls), for braving the elements and adding to the educational experience of our young people.
Planning and preparations for the new school year are well underway. Our new teachers are gearing up for an exciting school year! (Left to right) Ms. Marcy Moore - Grades 5 & 6; Mr. Derek Boyce - Mathematics; Pastor James Reid IV - Religion; Mrs. Julie Dayen - Registrar, Mathematics, English.
Last week the French I and German II classes skyped with a college student about his experience learning a foreign language through Adventist Colleges Abroad (ACA). He was no other than Caleb Carter, the former PTA student and friend of many. Carter was newly returned from Argentina where he had spent eight months learning Spanish at Universidad Adventista del Plata.
“I like how Caleb shared first-hand experiences,” stated Andi Medrano, French I student. Whether listening to how Carter adjusted to life in the dorm or to his travels through South America with ACA, our PTA students were riveted. “It gave me a better picture of what it would be like,” said Chris Velasquez, also a French I student. Carter rated his experience abroad through ACA as “unforgettable - a 10!”
Key to the picture of becoming bilingual was the fact that it often takes until Christmas “to break through to the other side” - that moment when communicating in the target language all of a sudden seems much easier. This was also true for Katie Pekar ’12, Ryan Pierce ’12 and Shannon Pierce ’11, other PTA alumni who have studied languages abroad through ACA.
“I do view myself as bilingual now,” stated Carter, “although my definition of “fluent” has changed. There will always be room to improve.” Carter will be returning to Walla Walla University as a junior next fall. Thanks, Caleb, for the armchair tour of Argentina! ¡Vaya con Dios!
Earlier in the week, PTA graduate Annie Paige (Class of 2011), addressed the female students in grades 5-8. She talked to them about how to effectively communicate with each other using several strategies. She answered questions about relationships with friends and how to deal with disagreements. Annie also expressed the importance of understanding how you personally communicate and realizing that others may not communicate in that same way. During these impressionable years, it is important to give our young people assistance in dealing with interpersonal relationships. We are grateful that Pine Tree Academy graduates are willing to give back in this way!