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We just returned from our first real camping adventure as a family. Before this trip, my idea of camping was roasting marshmallows over a late night fire, sleeping under the stars and doing everything to avoid having to get out of my warm sleeping bag to go to the bathroom in the middle of the night. My camping experiences were either pre-children or with toddlers, so I hadn’t factored ‘education’ into my idea of camping.

Fortunately for us, our camping companion was also an infinite learner who took the time to bring some books, learn new things and then share it all with us as we sat around the fire. It was fascinating to have someone with us who approached camping from a very different perspective and it was a wonderful role model for my boys.

I observed us learning and enjoyed that it was shared in a way that captured our attention. By the end of the trip, the boys were able to identify the trees in our campsite, we learned how to estimate the remaining daylight hours, there were discussions of different kinds of fires needed to attract attention if lost, as well as understanding the animals, plants and other wildlife in our area. We learned different techniques, different styles of camping and developed a new appreciation and understanding of the great outdoors.

I loved being able to step out of my role of teacher and observe our learning. I enjoyed our teacher’s enthusiasm and could see how far enthusiasm can carry a topic. It was fun to see how much we all retained and what was of interest to each of us based on our own learning styles.

The kids became an integral part of our camping team; helping us with set up, meals, keeping the site clean, and helping with tear down and packing up to go home. Camping gave the kids the opportunity to learn different leadership roles, gain some independence and have a lot of fun doing it.

Roasting marshmallows was fun too but I’m grateful to have experienced camping in a new way and see another great example of infinite learning in action.

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Today we met with a group of infinite learners for a picnic in the park. It was an unfamiliar group for most of us. We all knew a family or two, but largely, we were a group of strangers, brought together only because we are infinite learners. I cannot tell you what a beautiful experience it was to both participate in and observe.

We came around the corner to find the teenage boys cooking the burgers over the fire, a table of crafts where older children were shown what to do then they helped the younger ones, more than enough food to feed a small army, and children of all ages playing together and having fun.

Older kids playing with a soccer ball were welcoming of younger ones who wanted to play too, some of the children headed off to the playground, others engaged with one another and many were enjoying the beautiful natural setting and having fun with sticks, climbing trees and running free.

I loved watching this group because everyone was accepted, everything was acceptable and there was a real free-flow feel to the day and a natural interaction among people of all ages, genders and backgrounds.

It was a true joy to be part of this group today. I loved the feeling of acceptance among everyone, I loved watching everyone participate and I loved watching the natural interactions occurring everywhere.

I was truly inspired, proud and thrilled to be part of this group today and once again, feel blessed to be an infinite learning family.